Apple’s new iPad Pro launched with trackpad support and magic keyboard

Apple announced the release of its latest and most advanced iPad pro on 18th March in a press release leaving many surprised. The new iPad Pro is loaded with several advanced features including the A12Z Bionic chip that makes the iPad Pro faster as well as more powerful than most  PC laptops. 

While many people are surprised by the release of iPad pro at a time when an economic downturn is most likely, Apple seems to be in no mood to stop whatever the situation. Alongside its iPad Pro models, Apple also introduced the new Magic Keyboard for iPad Pro which will be available for purchase in May.

Apple’s stores outside Greater China are closed till March 27. However, customers can order the product online. Its stores in Greater China reopened on March 13 and much of Apple’s supply chain operations there are also restored. Apple recognized the efforts made by its China unit to restore operations in a  press release on 13th March. 

The new iPad Pro features several improvements apart from a better typing experience and Augment Reality as well as faster performance enabled by the A12Z Bionic Chip.

Software and main features:

iPadOS 13.4: 

The iPadOS 13.4 integrates trackpad support into an iPad for the first time to offer its users higher precision in terms of selecting text and working with spreadsheets.

“Designed specifically for the touch-first experience on iPad, the cursor appears as a circle that highlights user interface elements, text fields and apps on the Home screen and Dock, giving a clear indication of what users can click on. Fluid gestures on the trackpad make it easy to switch between apps, access the app switcher and activate the Dock, Control Center and apps in Slide Over.”

Apple Press Release.

Camera: iPad Pro features 2 cameras

The Pro camera system on iPad Pro features two cameras – a 12MP Wide camera for capturing photos and 4K video, and a 10MP Ultra-Wide camera that zooms out two times to capture a much wider field of view. The second camera brings extra possibilities for creative pros through different perspectives and multi-camera settings. 

Display: edge-to-edge Liquid Retina display

The edge-to-edge Liquid Retina display in both the models features P3 wide color support that allows users to see photos, videos, apps and games in vivid, true-to-life detail. The ProMotion technology on iPad pro adjusts the display refresh rate up to 120 Hz automatically allowing for ultra-smooth scrolling and higher responsiveness. True Tone, high brightness and an anti-reflective coating deliver the best viewing experience in every situation. Apple claims it is the world’s most advanced mobile display.

Audio and Mics: Five Studio Quality Mics and four-speaker audio.

The iPad Pro features five mics and four-speaker audio. The five studio-quality microphones capture super clean sound and the most silent details to deliver an immersive and musical experience with four-speaker audio. The audio system adjusts to any orientation irrespective of how it is held. Apple has created a mobile studio combining Pro camera system with Pro audio and large display which will particularly attract the creative pros and content creators.

LiDAR Scanner:

The LiDar scanner is something really SciFi. Verge has shared a gif of how the scanner can turn a room into an AR version of Hot Lava. The scanner enables a whole new level of AR experience. The scanner works over a distance of 5 meters in all directions, in both indoor and outdoor settings and operates at the photon level at nanosecond speeds. iPadOS combines depth points the scanner measures through its new depth frameworks with data from the two cameras and motion sensors and the computer vision algorithms on the A12Z Bionic enhance it to offer an improved understanding of the scene with finer details. By integrating these elements tightly Apple has brought the AR experience to a whole new level on the iPad Pro. The LiDAR scanner also brings new opportunities for developers to create scenarios that were previously impossible.

Performance: A12Z Bionic Chip

The iPad Pro is built to cater to the needs of those who perform the most complex and demanding tasks like editing 4K video or designing 3D models. The A12Z Bionic Chip with eight-core CPU offers a real performance boost. The eight-core CPU in the chip comes with an enhanced thermal architecture and tuned performance controllers. Together the eight-core CPU and the powerful Neural Engine (that enables next-gen apps) offer incredible performance, better than any other chip can. The battery life of the iPad Pro is 10 hours. Faster Wi-Fi connectivity and 60 percent faster gigabit-class LTE with support for more LTE bands than other tablets, iPad also enables round the clock productivity for users.

Accessories and Keyboard: Magic Keyboard and USB-C pass-through charging

The new Magic Keyboard has a magnetic attachment with the iPad Pro and works equally well in your lap or on a desk allowing smooth adjustments of the viewing angle up to 130 degrees. The USB-C pass-through charging feature of the magic keyboard keeps the USB-C port on iPad Pro free for accessories including external drives and displays. Navigation and adjustments are also easier with the click anywhere trackpad on the magic keyboard. 

Pricing and Availability:

  • The 11-inch iPad Pro starting $799 (US) for the Wi-Fi model 
  •  $949 (US) for the Wi-Fi + Cellular model, 
  • the 12.9-inch iPad Pro starts at $999 (US) for the Wi-Fi model and
  • $1,149 (US) for the Wi-Fi + Cellular model from Apple website.
  • The new iPad Pro is available to order from March 18th on the Apple website and in the Apple Store app in 30 countries and regions, including the US. 
  • iPad Pro will be available in stores starting March 25th.
  • Education pricing – The new 11-inch iPad Pro starts at $749 (US) and the 12.9-inch iPad Pro starts at $899 (US). The second-generation Apple Pencil for $119 (US) and the new Smart Keyboard Folio for the new iPad Pro for $159 (US) for the 11-inch iPad Pro and $179 (US) for the 12.9-inch iPad Pro for college students. The Magic Keyboard for iPad Pro for college students at $279 (US) for the 11-inch iPad Pro and $329 (US) for the 12.9-inch iPad Pro. More information available here:
  • Apple will make iPadOS 13.4 with trackpad support available on March 24 as a free software update for all iPad Pro models, iPad Air 2 and later, iPad 5th generation and later, and iPad mini 4 and later.
  • Any iPad running iPadOS 13.4 will have iPad track support. Trackpad support will work with Apple’s Magic Mouse 2, Magic Trackpad 2 and the Magic Keyboard for iPad Pro as well as third party mice connected over Bluetooth or USB.
  • The Magic Keyboard for iPad Pro can be bought in May for $299 (US) for the 11-inch iPad Pro and $349 (US) for the 12.9-inch iPad Pro.