The iPad Pros are for people who want the fastest and most powerful Apple tablets available. It’s been more than a year since the last update: both the 11-inch and 12.9-inch Pros received significant upgrades in April 2021, bringing the M1 chip to the platform. But is now still a good time to buy one?
iPad Pro: Pricing and specs
Last update: April 2021
Apple introduced the 12.9-inch iPad Pro back in November 2015, followed by the smaller 9.7-inch Pro a year later. Since then, the series has gone through several revisions, with the smaller device moving up to an 11-inch panel in 2018. Now, after being announced in April 2021 and released the following month, the fifth-gen iPad Pros are incredibly powerful devices that Apple is positioning as a potential replacement for your laptop.
The two devices share the majority of their tech specs, including M1 processors, up to 2TB of storage, quad speakers, 120Hz refresh rate ProMotion displays, 12MP f/1.8 Wide and 10MP f/2.4 Ultra Wide cameras, 4K/60fps video recording, 12MP f/2.4 Ultra Wide front-facing camera, Face ID, Wi-Fi 6, Bluetooth 5 and a LiDAR scanner, plus support for the second-gen Apple Pencil and Apple’s Magic Keyboard.
Here’s how the two models are priced on the Apple Store:
iPad Pro 11-inch (2021)
- 128GB: $799/£749
- 256GB: $899/£849
- 512GB: $1,099/£1,049
- 1TB: $1,499/£1,399
- 2TB: $1,899/£1,749
iPad Pro 12.9-inch (2021)
- 128GB: $1,099/£999
- 256GB: $1,199/£1,099
- 512GB: $1,399/£1,299
- 1TB: $1,799/£1,649
- 2TB: $2,199/£1,999
You may be able to find them for a lower price, however, if you buy from another retailer. Check our roundup of the best iPad deals for the lowest prices right now.
iPad Pro: Why you should buy
Although the latest generation of the iPad Pros has been out for around a year now, Apple tends to upgrade them around every 18 months or so, meaning there’s still several months until new models are likely to appear.
With this in mind, if you want a flagship iPad, then buying a Pro now would be a good idea. With the M1 chip upgrade, the new Pros are already overpowered for most people’s needs, so even if Apple does surprise us with an early release of the 6th-gen Pros, you’ll still have an extremely capable device that will last you a good few years. The Super Retina (11-inch) and Super Retina XDR (12.9-inch) displays are also some of the best panels Apple has ever produced, and the tablets’ USB-C ports means the Pros are future-proofed for compatibility with external devices and peripherals.
iPad Pro: Why you should wait
We’ve already covered the news that new iPad Pros with M2 chips are reportedly coming in the fall, so if you don’t need an iPad Pro immediately then waiting a few months will mean you can buy the brand-new ones around October/November. Read our guide to the new iPad Pro release date for the latest launch news.
Macworld recommends: BUY
The current iPad Pros are incredibly powerful devices, so we can’t see how the next generation will be a huge step forward for the platform. Add to this the fact that it could be another six months until the 6th-gen models arrive, and we think buying an iPad Pro now would still be a good investment.