iPad Pro Overview Updated January 15, 2022

iPad Pro

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October 2013 - January 2022

New iPad Pro vs 2020 iPad Pro

The iPad Pro is Apple’s professional tablet choice. This iPad promises to fill any professional user’s needs with a stunning display and high specs. Here’s everything you need to know about it.

History

The first-generation iPad Pro was first available in November of 2015 with a giant 12.9-inch screen. Later in March of 2016, Apple announced a smaller version, with a 9.7-inch display. Apple also introduced the first-generation Apple Pencil and Smart Keyboard with this iPad

The Apple Pencil was a key accessory to this iPad since it rejects the user’s palm while in use and is designed for low latency to enable smooth marking on the screen. The Smart Keyboard makes it easier for the user to take notes and work anywhere with the iPad.

The second generation arrived in June of 2017, featuring the A10X Fusion processor and up to 512GB of storage. The 9.7-inch model was replaced with a 10.5-inch version.

In October of 2018, Apple introduced the third-generation iPad Pro, giving the tablet its biggest update yet. With a bezel-less design, the 12.9-inch model became smaller, while Apple replaced the 10.5-inch version for the first-generation 11-inch iPad Pro.

ipad comparison

Apple added Face ID to the tablet, with the ability to unlock the iPad in any orientation. This was also the first mobile product from the company to feature a USB-C port. With up to 1TB of storage, Apple also introduced the second-generation Apple Pencil, now charging when attached to the iPad’s side, and a new Smart Keyboard Folio that protects the iPad when closed.

In March of 2020, Apple introduced the fourth-generation 12.9-inch iPad Pro and the second-generation 11-inch model. These iPads were the first product to feature a redesigned camera module and the LiDAR Scanner.

in April of 2021, Apple unveiled the fifth-generation iPad Pro with the M1 chip, Thunderbolt port, 5G support, and the mini-LED display technology in the 12.9-inch model.

iPad Pro Specs and Accessories

Apple sells today the 12.9-inch iPad Pro (5th generation) and the 11-inch model (third generation). Both versions feature the M1 chip, which is up to 50% faster than the A12Z Bionic in the previous model, 5G support, a Thunderbolt port, and up to 2TB of storage.

For the first time, Apple says the models with more than 1TB of storage have 16GB of RAM, and versions with less than 1TB of storage have 8GB of RAM.

The iPad Pro uses Face ID technology and has a redesigned camera module, with 12MP Wide Len, 10MP Ultra Wide Len, and a LiDAR Scanner, which is used for AR applications and helps to enhance focus while recording videos or taking pictures.

The TrueDepth camera now has a 12MP Ultra Wide Len with the “Center Stage” feature, which always puts the user in the center of a video call.

With up to ten hours of surfing the web on Wi-Fi or up to nine hours using a cellular data network, this iPad is available in Silver and Space Gray.

The fifth-generation Pro model works with the Magic Keyboard, featuring a trackpad, backlighted keys, a hinge to adjust the viewing angle, and a USB-C port for pass-through charging. It’s available in white and black. This model also uses the second-generation Apple Pencil, which charges attached to the iPad. You can learn more about the 2021 iPad Pro here.

iPadOS 15

The iPad Pro runs iPadOS 15. Previewed during the WWDC21 keynote, the operating system brings a redesigned Home Screen with widgets and App Library support.

In the productivity section, Apple, unfortunately, didn’t bring all the features pro users wanted to take full advantage of their new M1 iPad Pro, even though, later this year, it will be possible to create apps using Swift Playgrounds, as you can learn more about it here

There’s a new multitasking menu on the top of the screen. When you click there, it’s possible to see what configurations you can use on Split View or just go to Slide Over with just a tap.

The experience with an external keyboard allows users to get more done with all-new keyboard shortcuts and a redesign of the menu bar.

With the Quick Note feature, users can use the Apple Pencil to add a quick note. They just need to slide the pencil through the bottom right corner to the center of the screen and start writing.

iPadOS 15 is already out, with version 15.0.1 also available. Learn more about it here. In a future update, Apple will bring SharePlay for the iPad, which will let users share their screen, listen to Apple Music songs together, or watch Apple TV+, HBO Max, Disney+, and others while in a call.

iPadOS 15.1

One month after releasing iPadOS 15, Apple released iPadOS 15.1 More notable, the company finally brought SharePlay support for the iPhone, iPad, and Apple TV. Unfortunately, Universal Control wasn’t one of the features added with this new version. Here’s what else is new:

  • Mandarin Chinese (Taiwan) support in the Translate app and for system-wide translation
  • New automation triggers based on the current reading of a HomeKit-enabled humidity, air quality, or light level sensor
  • New pre-built actions let you overlay text on images or gifs, plus a new collection of games lets you pass the time with Siri

iPadOS 15.2

Five weeks after releasing iPadOS 15.1, Apple is releasing iPadOS 15.2. It brings more features that were expected to launch alongside iPadOS 15 but, unfortunately, Universal Control is still nowhere to be seen. Here are the top features of this version:

  • Apple Music Voice Plan is a new subscription tier that gives you access to all songs, playlists, and stations in Apple Music using Siri
  • App Privacy Report in Settings lets you see how often apps have accessed your location, photos, camera, microphone, contacts and more during the last seven days, as well as their network activity
  • Communication safety setting gives parents the ability to enable warnings for children when they receive or send photos that contain nudity
  • Digital Legacy allows you to designate people as Legacy Contacts so they can access your iCloud account and personal information in the event of your death
  • Apple TV app: Store tab lets you browse, buy, and rent movies and TV Shows all in one place

iPadOS 14

With iPad OS 14, Apple has redesigned widgets for the Home Screen, added a new enhanced sidebar, compact calls function, and Scribble. With this function, you don’t have to put Apple Pencil away to do other things. You can write by hand in any text field across iPadOS, and your words automatically convert to text.

Messages received pinned conversations, group photos, and inline replies. It’s possible to mention people in iMessage now and give your Memoji a more personalized look.

In April, Apple released iPadOS 14.5, with some major changes in the iPadOS 14 cycle:

  • App Tracking Transparency: iPadOS 14.5 includes the new App Tracking Transparency feature. This requires that applications ask permission from users before tracking them across other apps and websites. For example, when you open the Facebook app, you’ll see a prompt that says the app would like to track you across other apps and services. There will be two options from which to choose: “Ask App Not to Track” or “Allow.”
  • Siri: There is a new Siri intelligence feature that helps the virtual assistant adapt to your preferring music application. Apple also added two additional Siri voice options from which to choose. The company has said that these changes are part of its ongoing commitment to diversity.
  • Emoji: iPadOS 14.5 adds over 200 new emojis.
  • Podcasts: Podcasts Show Pages are redesigned to make it easier to start listening to a podcast. Option to save and download episodes, automatically adding them to your library for quick access. Top Charts and popular categories in Search help discover new shows.
  • Horizontal boot screen on the iPad
  • Updates to the Music app, including swipe gestures, a lyrics sharing feature, and more.

Although iPadOS 15 is available, users can stay with iPadOS 14.8 with important security patches and bug fixes.

Pricing

iPad Pro (2021) pricing starts at $799 for the 11-inch model, with a 128GB storage option, and Wi-Fi only. The prices can go up to $2,399 with the 12.9-inch model, 2TB storage option, and Wi-Fi + Cellular. Here are the full prices of the third-generation 11-inch model and the fifth-generation 12.9-inch version Apple sell:

11-inch iPad Pro and accessories:

  • 128GB with Wi-Fi: $799
  • 128GB with Wi-Fi + Cellular: $949
  • 256GB with Wi-Fi: $899
  • 256GB with Wi-Fi + Cellular: $1,049
  • 512GB with Wi-Fi: $1,099
  • 512GB with Wi-Fi + Cellular: $1,249
  • 1TB with Wi-Fi: $1,299
  • 1TB with Wi-Fi + Cellular: $1,499
  • 2TB with Wi-Fi: $1899
  • 2TB with Wi-Fi + Cellular: $ 2.099
  • Magic Keyboard (11-inch): $299
  • Apple Pencil (2nd gen): $129

12.9-inch iPad Pro and accessories:

  • 128GB with Wi-Fi: $1099
  • 128GB with Wi-Fi + Cellular: $1,299
  • 256GB with Wi-Fi: $1,199
  • 256GB with Wi-Fi + Cellular: $1,399
  • 512GB with Wi-Fi: $1,399
  • 512GB with Wi-Fi + Cellular: $1,599
  • 1TB with Wi-Fi: $1,799
  • 1TB with Wi-Fi + Cellular: $1,999
  • 2TB with Wi-Fi: $2,199
  • 2TB with Wi-Fi + Cellular: $2,399
  • Magic Keyboard (11-inch): $349
  • Apple Pencil (2nd gen): $129

Lower prices may be available from Apple’s official Amazon store. You can also find the Magic Keyboard and second-generation Apple Pencil.

2021 iPad Pro Launch

The fifth-generation launched on May 21. Orders started on April 30 2021.

Fifth-generation 12.9-inch iPad Pro review

In our video review of the fifth-generation iPad Pro, we say this is the perfect model to upgrade if you want the power of the M1 chip on the iPad but it still needs a better software update to unleash its full power.

Hardware-wise this is the complete package. The 2021 iPad is basically a Mac computer without macOS. But it’s so much more than a Mac, and that’s what makes the iPad such a compelling product. The iPad has a display that’s better than any MacBook, can connect to the Internet independent of Wi-Fi, has a better speaker system, features easy Face ID authentication, works with the Apple Pencil, and so much more.

If Apple can provide big enhancements in areas like multitasking, external display support, and file management, I think the iPad will finally be able to compete with the Mac and be the laptop replacement that so many people have wanted it to be.

Deals

Over at 9to5Toys, you can find the best deals on the iPad Pro and other Apple products. Download the 9to5Toys iPhone app to receive push notifications for new deals as well.

Rumors

With less than a year since Apple released the M1 iPad Pro, there are already some rumors about its next generation.

According to Apple analyst Ming-Chi Kuo, the company has been investing in more miniLED display suppliers as it plans to adopt the technology in more products as of the next 11-inch iPad Pro model.

Kuo’s report also corroborates that the 2022 iPad Pro will likely keep the same screen sizes as the current generation, which are 11 and 12.9 inches. A Bloomberg report in June claimed that Apple has been developing a redesigned iPad Pro with a glass back, but it’s unclear whether Apple will actually adopt the new design in 2022. Mark Gurman also said in his Power On newsletter that the company has been exploring iPad models with larger screens, but Kuo believes that we shouldn’t expect this next year.

In December of 2021, Mark Gurman’s Power On newsletter gave Apple customers a tidbit of what to expect from the new iPad Pro:

He says that Apple is planning a new iPad Pro design with support for wireless charging, as well as updates to the lower-end iPad Air and entry-level iPad.

In January 2022, 9to5Mac was able to report that Apple is indeed working on a new iPad Pro, but it won’t feature a full glass back. As a matter of fact, the company is planning to grow the Apple logo with glass material so it can charge the device through MagSafe support.

iPad Pro Stories January 15

Apple is set to release another generation of iPad Pro in 2022. After the model with the M1 chip, miniLED display, and 5G support in 2021, the company is rumored to launch an even better iPad Pro this year.

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iPad Pro Stories January 3

To boost sales of Apple devices, Verizon and T-Mobile partnered with Apple on a rebate program in which carriers would give a discount for new devices such as the iPad Pro, iPhone 13, and Apple Watch Series 7. Unfortunately, after a lot of users complained about not getting the proper discount, carriers decided to discontinue the program.

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iPad Pro Stories December 5, 2021

Apple had a busy year in 2021, announcing the iPhone 13 lineup, new Apple Silicon-powered Macs, and more. Looking ahead to 2022, there’s still a lot to expect from the company. In the latest edition of his Power On newsletter, Bloomberg’s Mark Gurman breaks down everything he expects Apple to unveil in the new year.

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iPad Pro Stories November 5, 2021

Tested: Lululook Urban magnetic iPad stand for 11- or 12.9-inch iPad Pro

One of the things I like about Apple’s Magic Keyboard for iPad is that it also serves as a magnetic iPad stand ideal for cooking. It keeps the screen upright and safely off the worktop surface, which are the two requirements when using your iPad as a cookbook. The only drawback is that the orientation is landscape, when portrait mode allows you to see more of the recipe at once.

That’s something the Lululook Urban magnetic iPad stand solves. Clearly modeled on the iMac stand, it can be used in both landscape and portrait modes.

iPad Pro Stories November 3, 2021

Early today, a report by The Elec suggested that the first OLED MacBook has been delayed while there isn’t a sign of a product with a micro-LED display, the successor of miniLED. Now, a story from Nikkei Asia says that Apple is in an “active development program” of new products with this technology.

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iPad Pro Stories October 6, 2021

A new supply chain report suggests that we’ll see OLED iPad Pro models in 2024, but there is a great deal of uncertainty surrounding Apple’s plans for the various display technologies.

There is a potential four-stage transition strategy for iPad displays, with Apple having already moved to the second of these …

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iPad Pro Stories September 24, 2021

A horizontal iPad Pro orientation is set to become the new normal with future models, suggests a leaker with a decent track record.

Currently, there are a number of ways in which an iPad signals vertical – or portrait – orientation as the default, rather than horizontal or landscape …

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iPad Pro Stories August 13, 2021

Apple’s current iPad Pro hardware is remarkably strong, but the Xerox machine that is Xiaomi thinks it can out-iPad the iPad. Astonishingly inexpensive price aside, Xiaomi has some good ideas on how to make an iPad…

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iPad Pro Stories August 9, 2021

If you’re looking for special iPad deals, Apple on Monday began selling the 2020 iPad Pro models in its Apple Refurbished Store. Customers can now buy a refurbished iPad Pro from the previous generation for as low as $609.

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iPad Pro Stories August 3, 2021

Following a big move to bring the iPhone 12 to almost 20,000 Delta flight attendants back in April, the airline is again partnering with Apple and AT&T to upgrade all of its pilot’s electronic flight bags with the new M1-powered iPad Pro and 5G.

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iPad Pro Stories July 28, 2021

Satechi launched its Aluminum Stand and Hub for iPad Pro/Air last month with a foldable design that brings 6 ports, integrated USB-C cable connector, and features like 4K output at 60Hz and 60W power. We’ve been testing out this handy iPad accessory that also works with MacBooks for a few weeks, read on for our full review.

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The 2020 iPad Air is a compelling tablet and will be the top pick for a lot of users. However, while it matches and even surpasses the 2020 11-inch iPad Pro in a variety of aspects, the latter still holds the upper hand when it comes to certain use cases. And now the 2021 iPad Pro with M1 chip outperforms both. Let’s break down the similarities and differences to help you decide if you should buy the iPad Air or the 11-inch iPad Pro.

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iPad Pro Stories July 19, 2021

A close look at the miniLED backlighting in the 12.9-inch M1-powered iPad Pro

One of the headline features of this year’s 12.9-inch iPad Pro was the miniLED backlighting – or what Apple calls the Liquid Retina HDR display. A pair of new photos posted on Weibo provides a very close look at this tech …

iPad Pro Stories July 14, 2021

While Apple entered the 5G phone market after Samsung, the iPhone 12 line has been a major splash for 5G adoption. Competition between US carriers to win over iPhone customers with the best 5G experience is real, so we’re curious how the next generation of wireless service has been so far for readers.

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iPad Pro Stories July 13, 2021

JetBlue first got FAA approval to use iPads on the flight deck of its fleet of airliners back in 2013, and is now introducing the latest M1-powered iPad Pro models.

JetBlue says that the iPad quickly proved to be an invaluable tool, replacing reams of paperwork as well as providing convenient access to operational apps …

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iPad Pro Stories July 9, 2021

Apple announced earlier this year a new generation iPad Pro with the M1 chip, 5G support, and a Mini-LED display. The new display technology, however, is exclusive to the 12.9-inch model — at least so far. In a new research note obtained by 9to5Mac, reliable analyst Ming-Chi Kuo says that both 11-inch and 12.9-inch iPad Pro will feature a Mini-LED panel in 2022.

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iPad Pro Stories June 27, 2021

With the iPad Pro, Apple introduced a 12.9-inch screen, its bigger touchscreen size yet. Now, Bloomberg‘s Mark Gurman reports the company is in the early days of creating iPads with even bigger sizes. Would you consider buying one?

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When Apple announced the M1 iPad Pro in April with a new mini-LED display, the M1 chip, and up to 2TB of storage with 16GB of RAM, there was only one thing missing: the software that would take advantage of this high-end machine.

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iPad Pro Stories June 15, 2021

Market intelligence firm Counterpoint is out with its latest report on the global tablet market, which shows that the iPad market share increased in Q1, year-on-year.

Apple had already enjoyed 33% more iPad sales in 2020 than in 2019, and the data shows that the good news continued into the first quarter of this year …

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iPad Pro Stories June 12, 2021

In an unlisted video, Apple is promoting the new iPad Pro with the series “Your next computer is not a computer.” This time, the company creates a parody of The Little Mermaid’s “Part of Your World” song.

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iPad Pro Stories June 11, 2021

Apple held its kick off keynote for WWDC 2021 earlier this week. WWDC21 brought lots of improvements to iOS, iPadOS, macOS, and watchOS, but there are also some things users were expecting to see that didn’t ultimately make the cut.

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iPad Pro Stories June 4, 2021

Following its in-depth teardown of the M1 iMac last month, iFixit has now shared a video teardown of the M1 iPad Pro. In a new video posted to YouTube today, iFixit tears into the 12.9-inch M1 iPad Pro with a particular focus on the new Liquid Retina XDR display technology.

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Apple has a new iPad Pro design coming next year, according to a new report from Bloomberg. The report says that the new iPad Pro could feature a glass back to enable wireless charging on the iPad for the first time. Apple is also testing reverse wireless charging support to allow the iPad Pro to charge other devices.

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iPad Pro Stories June 3, 2021

When it came to trying the upcoming Brydge Max+ keyboard for the 12.9-inch iPad Pro, it seemed most sensible to write it up as a head-to-head against the Apple Magic Keyboard. Both are premium-priced keyboards with integrated trackpads, and are essentially chasing the same user demographic.

I’ve long been a fan of Brydge keyboards, and have used them with all my iPads – but have so far been using Apple’s Magic Keyboard with my 12.9-inch iPad Pro…

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