Apple on Tuesday revealed an upgrade to the flagship iPad Pro with the same design but a flurry of new features. Apple updated both the 11-inch and 12.9 inch models, and customers can place online orders now, with availability in the retail Apple Store starting on October 26.
The new iPad Pro features the M2 processor, an upgrade over the M1 it replaces. The M2, which was introduced earlier this year in the MacBook Air and 13-inch MacBook Pro, has the same 8-core CPU as the M1 (four performance cores and four efficiency cores) but is roughly 15 percent faster than the M1.
The M2 chip in the iPad Pro also includes 10 GPU cores, an increase over the 8 GPU cores in the M1, which delivers a 35 percent graphics performance improvement. Apple also says the M2’s 16-core Neural Engine is 40 percent faster, and the 100 Gbps of unified memory bandwidth is 50 percent better. The new iPad Pro supports up to 16GB of memory in the 1TB and 2TB storage configurations.
Like the M2s in the MacBooks, the iPad Pro’s M2 has an improved media engine that includes acceleration for ProRes video, and Apple says the M2 can transcode ProRes video three times faster than the M1 iPad Pro. The new iPad Pro is the Apple’s device to upgrade to to Wi-Fi 6E, which allows the tablet to take advantage of the 1200MHz spectrum of the wireless technology–if the router providing Wi-Fi connectivity also supports it.
Apple Pencil hover experience
iPad Pro users often use the Apple Pencil (second generation) for precision input, and Apple has added a new hover feature for the Pencil. The iPad Pro can sense the Pencil up to 12mm away from the screen, and you can preview your mark before applying it for greater precision. You can also perform adjustments, such as resizing a spot before placing it, and text fields expand with hover.
Hover works in Apple apps on the new iPad Pro, and third-party developers will be able to implement the new feature. The new feature requires iPadOS 16, an M2-equipped iPad, and the second-generation Apple Pencil, so it’s not available on older iPad models of the original Pencil.
M2 iPad Pro pricing and availability
The new M2 iPad Pro is now available to order online for delivery on October 26. Apple offers the tablet in silver or space gray in a variety of storage options. The following is the iPad Pro and accessories price structure.
11-inch iPad Pro: starts at $799/£899 (128GB, Wi-Fi only) and $999/£1,079 (128GB, Wi-Fi + cellular)
12.9-inch iPad Pro: starts at $1,099/£1,249 (128GB, Wi-Fi only) and $1,299/£1,429 (128GB, Wi-Fi + cellular)