It was during the keynote speech at the Apple event on September 9, 2015 that the group unveiled its biggest and most powerful tablet. The iPad Pro is set to hit retail this month, with reports suggesting it will drop November 11 or 13. The new tablet will be in direct competition with the brand new Surface Pro 4 and the upcoming Google Pixel C, each of which is regarded as a viable alternative to a laptop computer.
The iPad Pro has a 12.9 inch screen with a resolution of 2732x2048 pixels. It is described as the most powerful ever produced by Apple with its new A9X chipset that can compete with many laptop computers. It will be offered in three metal finishes (silver, gold and space grey). It will be available in the US from $799 for the Wi-Fi model and from $1079 for the Wi-Fi + cellular model.
This tablet will have a stylus as an add-on option, which is a first for Apple. The iPad Pro Multi-Touch screen’s tactile sub-system has been specifically designed to operate with this Apple Pencil, which is aimed to be as precise as possible for all artistic and 3D design purposes. It is compatible with all apps, including an office suite such as Office. The new “Smart Keyboard” is connected directly to the tablet, without Bluetooth, and its design is very slim and resilient.
Hybrid devices midway between a tablet and a PC
With these features, the iPad Pro looks like a credible rival to a laptop. It is in the same market position as Microsoft with its Surface Pro range.
This new generation Microsoft tablet, with a starting price of $899, is bigger (12.3 inches) and thinner (8.4mm) than the Surface Pro 3. Its stand-out feature is its new stylus, which has up to 1024 degrees of pressure sensitivity -- a first for a touch screen, according to RedmondMag.
And Google recently unveiled a similar tablet, derived from its Chromebook Pixel, with an aluminum body, a USB Type-C port and an LED battery charge indicator. This 10.2 inch tablet (2560x1800 pixels) can also be used with a keyboard, available as an option, making it a high-performance hybrid solution. This Pixel C tablet is retail for a starting prices of $499 in the US.