Apple has found themselves in a race. As technology advances, devices (phones, tablets, watches) get faster, easier to use, and shockingly…bigger. Yes, as technology expands, so does the size and the iPad Pro is the epitome of a tiny idea, expanded. This idea comes with the conception that all consumers are doing is paying more money, similar specs on a larger platform, sans really any difference. While there is some truth to this, Apple proves with the iPad Pro that things can get bigger and be better than their smaller brothers.
Bigger IS Better
The biggest draw to the iPad Pro is clearly the obvious; it’s massive. The size of the iPad Pro will surprise most people, especially those who use an iPad Mini or a traditionally sized one. The screen is a staggering 12.9 inches. This comes with an equally impressive 2732 x 2048 resolution. Something like this is almost unheard of, especially with 13 inch laptops usually sporting a lower resolution.
While the iPad Pro is surprisingly thin (6.9mm) the weight can feel quickly cumbersome. Sure, it clocks in about a quarter of a pound under 2 pounds, but those who power use devices, will feel it. Extending your arms for a matter of time becomes uneasy, amounting in a level of fatigue. Thankfully, Apple comes with a suite of products that allows the iPad Pro to be propped up in various ways. Most will find it reasonably comfortable in their lap, with little to no heat coming from the back side.
Looking Into Pure Wonderment
Apple implanted the same screen technology in the iPad Pro that is featured in their 5K retina Mac. This, featured with updated contrast ratio, accurate brightness and color really makes this screen stand out. At 226 ppi, the color ratio is not one of the highest for tablets, but still, the iPad Pro bolsters one of the most impressive screens on the market.
Colors are true to life. Going through various YouTube and Netflix titles really shows the depth of color, range of color and perfectly insinuates the high-resolution. Skin tones feel remarkably accurate, and the vibrant colors are truly eye-catching. You would be hard pressed to find something that this good.
Furthermore, web browsing is fantastic. The sensation of seeing an entire web page open on a tablet is a bit off setting. You truly are holding a laptop size screen in your hand, and web browsing, with the power of a desktop (allegedly). Pages are loaded with crisp text, allowing for ease of reading that you would expect from the freshly print Sunday newspaper.
Drawing (or photoshopping) with the iPad Pro is a user’s dream. The iPad Pro’s ability to accurate write, draw and edit pictures lends the reason why so many art majors request iPads and iMac’s. It isn’t just the ability of the iPad Pro to accurately translate what you do, but the numerous little technologies that go into it.
For those who are left-handed, and struggle with dragging their hand across what they’ve written, no need to worry, Apple has you covered. The screen uses a tech, when matching with the Apple Pen, that keeps your hand from marking up your work, and only focusing on what the Pen is doing. Sure, it sounds mind numbingly simple, but that’s what Apple does so well. It executes the simple things with tenacious efficiency.
The iPad Pro might warrant a purchase off this screen alone… might.
The Power Of A Desktop!?
The iPad Pro features Apple’s latest core chip, an A9x processor that stands to be two times more powerful than their previous chip, the A8x. The A8x processor was featured in the iPad Air 2, and based off benchmark performance, Apple is telling the truth. The A9x processor is faster in every way, from page loading, memory functioning, gaming, and content watching. Not only faster, but much faster.
While this is surely impressive, nothing is as truly as impressive as when you match it up to laptops/desktops. For instance, the 2015 MacBook is absolutely torched by the iPad Pro’s processor. The numbers are so significant that it’s almost hard to believe.
Clearly the match up to watch is the Surface Pro 4. The Surface Pro 4 marginally beats the iPad Pro is every test, enough so that the purchase should come down to really preference (although Apple fans will say the screen, and smaller size say otherwise, we tend to agree).
Processes are clear, quick and precise. Loading multiple pages at once is a breeze, and split screening the Pro allows for processing to go even further. This all can be done without a hitch, again, laptop power at the hands of something ‘tablet’ related. Impressive.
Gaming is smooth. More games should really harness the ability of the iPad Pro, but we are understanding, especially with the advancement, that things won’t be ready right off the bat. Still, frame rates were buttery smooth, and visually, things are gorgeous. HD textures will pop significantly, bolstered by the Pro’s incredible ability to accurately portray colors.
The iPad Pro has four speakers, four significant speakers that create an impressive audio immersion. While I won’t necessarily say these are the best speakers I’ve heard on a desktop free device (tablets, phones and laptops included) they do sound pleasant. A significant amount of bass erupts from them, calmed by an easy ability to hit high notes in music, trailers and video games. All four speakers handle bass, while two speakers handle highs, and two speakers handle low. Add in the fact that the iPad’s speakers handle dialogue well, and you have yourself an immersive experience.
Two cameras mark the front and rear of the tablet. The front camera is a simple 1.2 megapixel camera for selfies, and webcams. The quality is decent, for a front camera, and proves to be in line with what other tablets bring to the market.
The front facing camera, at 8 megapixels leaves some more to be desired. No tablet should be judged on the ability to take great pictures, so we won’t hold it against the iPad Pro for taking just decent pictures. Pictures come out reasonably sharp, with some decent color balancing, but as previously mentioned, this is the epitome of decent.
The App store currently features over 725,000 apps, so surely those expecting to get some use out of their iPad Pro will surely find it. Even more so, there is a special wedge that allows iPad Pro users to find ways to implement day-to-day living for them. This is simple enough, and an effective way to sort out iPad users.
However, most seeking a true desktop experience will probably find their ways to the Surface Pro 4. Truly, that, while not being nearly as beautiful (or powerful) does seem like a more traditional desktop experience (both in name and function).
The iPad Pro has one big problem, a problem that might scare most away, or at least cause some to question: Price. The iPad Pro starts off at 799, and can quickly send itself over $1000 dollars with the addition of more internal space/LTE/etc. This might be a hard bargain for most, especially most who will more than likely see this as a giant iPad.
Clearly, Apple did their best to circumvent that way of thinking, and add more functionality to the iPad’s growing form. For one, the screen is one of the best on the market, and is truly outstanding. Factored in with the impressive processing power, you have something that could easily be your day-to-day computer replacement.
That being said, those who love Apple products, rarely need to rationalize a purchase. For them, this might be another one of those obvious choices. For those looking outside-in, will find a solid, reliable and truly fantastic tablet, even if it isn’t completely perfect.