“Today we have the biggest news in iPad since the iPad,” says Apple CEO Tim Cook. That’s right: Apple has just announced the “iPad Pro”, and it’s the biggest iPad yet. The iPad Pro has a whopping 12.9-inch display with 2,732 x 2,048 pixels i.e. 5.6 million Pixels in the screen. To put that size into perspective, that means the screen is almost exactly the same width as the regular iPad’s is tall. It’s also, in case you didn’t run the math, got the same familiar 4:3 iPad aspect ratio and a functionally identical pixel density to the iPad Air. Apple says it’s so big the on-screen keyboard is “full-sized,” like on its laptops.
Inside iPad Pro, there is a brand new A9X chip. Apple’s third-gen 64-bit chip. Doubled memory bandwidth of A8X and graphics performance. One thing Apple isn’t saying how much RAM the Pro has, but chances are its silence on the matter means that it’s the same 2GB as the Air 2.Despite the larger display and increased power, the new iPad will apparently run for 10 hours on a charge.
But wait, there’s more! And this might be a game changer for this iPad Pro. iPad always lacked a pressure sensitive pen for artists. Apple has announced a stylus, called Pencil. Sensors in the Pencil detect position, force and tilt while you draw or write. Apple is calling it “Force data,” which is a fancy way of saying the screen is pressure-sensitive.
Oh, and it charges from the iPad’s Lightning port. At least you’ll never lose the cable?
In addition to the stylus, Apple also trotted out a “Smart Keyboard,” which is a keyboard case for the iPad Pro that turns the tablet into a Surface-a-like. It connects to the iPad via a new port called the “Smart Connector,” and contains a full keyboard with the same butterfly key technology as the Apple’s recently launched super-thin Macbook.
So. What’s the price for all of these additions? The iPad Pro will start at $799. That’s for a 32GB WiFi model. The 128GB WiFi models will cost $949, while the LTE 128GB model costs $1079. The new iPad Pro will be available in November.