Published on April 21st, 2021 | by Andrew Bistak
Apple introduces new iPad Pro featuring breakthrough M1 chip, ultra-fast 5G, and stunning 12.9-inch Liquid Retina XDR display
Apple today announced the most powerful and advanced iPad Pro ever, pushing the limits of what’s possible on iPad. The addition of the Apple-designed M1 chip delivers a massive leap in performance, making iPad Pro the fastest device of its kind. The 12.9-inch iPad Pro features a new Liquid Retina XDR display that brings extreme dynamic range to iPad Pro, offering a stunning visual experience with more true-to-life details to the most demanding HDR workflows. Cellular models with 5G deliver even faster wireless connectivity when on the go, and to provide users with pro-level throughput for high-speed accessories, iPad Pro now includes support for Thunderbolt. Additionally, an all-new Ultra Wide front camera enables Centre Stage, a new feature that automatically keeps users perfectly framed for even more engaging video calls. The new iPad Pro is available to order beginning Friday, 30 April, on apple.com/au, and will be available in the second half of May.
“The revolutionary M1 chip has been a breakthrough for the Mac, and we’re incredibly excited to bring it to iPad Pro,” said Greg Joswiak, Apple’s senior vice president of Worldwide Marketing. “With M1’s huge jump in performance, a groundbreaking extreme dynamic range experience on the 12.9-inch Liquid Retina XDR display, up to 2TB of high-speed storage, Thunderbolt expansion, a four-speaker audio system, pro cameras with LiDAR Scanner, blazing-fast 5G connectivity, an amazing video-calling experience with Centre Stage — combined with the advanced features of iPadOS and a powerful pro app ecosystem all in a device users can hold in one hand — there’s nothing else like iPad Pro.”
M1 Comes to iPad Pro
The breakthrough M1 chip takes the industry-leading performance of iPad Pro to an entirely new level. The 8-core CPU design features the world’s fastest CPU cores in low-power silicon — delivering up to 50 per cent faster CPU performance than A12Z Bionic. The 8-core GPU is in a class of its own, delivering up to 40 per cent faster GPU performance. This combination of CPU and graphics performance on iPad Pro widens its lead as the fastest device of its kind. Powerful custom technologies, including a next-generation 16-core Apple Neural Engine, an advanced image signal processor (ISP), a unified, high-bandwidth memory architecture with up to 16GB of memory, 2x faster storage, and up to 2TB capacity, make iPad Pro more capable than ever. The industry-leading power efficiency of M1 enables all of that amazing performance along with all-day battery life in the thin and light design of iPad Pro.1 Because M1 shares the same fundamental architecture of A-series chips, iPadOS is already optimised to take full advantage of the powerful technologies in M1 to easily handle everything from simple navigation to the most demanding workflows.
12.9-inch Liquid Retina XDR Display Brings Extreme Dynamic Range to iPad Pro
The new Liquid Retina XDR display brings the stunning front-of-screen performance of the Pro Display XDR to the 12.9-inch iPad Pro. Engineered with a new cutting-edge mini-LED design that uses over 10,000 LEDs across the entire back of the display, the Liquid Retina XDR display features up to 1000 nits of full-screen brightness, 1600 nits of peak brightness, and a phenomenal 1 million-to-1 contrast ratio to enhance creative workflows. The result is a stunning visual experience that reflects what can be seen in the real world by capturing the brightest highlights and the most subtle details in even the darkest images. Now creative professionals, including photographers, videographers, and filmmakers, can view and edit true-to-life HDR content on a large display they can take anywhere. The new Liquid Retina XDR display includes other advanced technologies that can also be found in the 11-inch iPad Pro, including ProMotion, True Tone, and P3 wide colour support, delivering an unmatched mobile cinematic viewing experience for HDR and Dolby Vision content.
Faster Speeds with 5G
With 5G available on iPad Pro, customers on the go can do even more with better performance and access to next-generation download and upload speeds — great for higher-quality video streaming, real-time collaboration, or FaceTime in high definition. Users can stay creative and productive using a secure, fast connection, reducing the need to connect to public Wi-Fi hotspots. Featuring the most 5G bands on any device of its kind, iPad Pro offers the broadest 5G coverage worldwide. iPad Pro models in the US support millimetre wave, the higher frequency version of 5G, allowing iPad Pro to reach speeds up to 4Gbps. iPad Pro also features support for eSIM, making it easy to find a network and sign up for a 5G data plan on the spot.2
Thunderbolt Comes to iPad Pro
Support for Thunderbolt and USB 4 makes the USB-C port on iPad Pro the fastest, most versatile port ever on an iPad, with 4x more bandwidth for wired connections than the previous iPad Pro — up to 40Gbps. Thunderbolt supports 10Gbps Ethernet and opens up a massive ecosystem of high-performance accessories, like faster external storage and even higher resolution external displays, including the Pro Display XDR at full 6K resolution, all connected using high-performance cables and docks. With support for more peripherals than ever, iPad Pro now fits even more seamlessly into creative workflows.
Centre Stage Delivers a New, More Engaging Experience for Video Calls
The TrueDepth camera system on iPad Pro features an all-new 12MP Ultra Wide front camera designed specifically for iPad, enabling Centre Stage, a new experience for video calls. Centre Stage uses the much larger field of view on the new front camera and the machine learning capabilities of M1 to recognise and keep users centred in the frame. As users move around, Centre Stage automatically pans to keep them in the shot. When others join in, the camera detects them too, and smoothly zooms out to fit everyone into the view and make sure they are part of the conversation. So whether whiteboarding with coworkers or attending a virtual family gathering, the experience of connecting is now more engaging than ever.
Additional New Features of iPad Pro
- The ISP and Neural Engine in M1 unlock even more capability from the pro camera system, bringing support for Smart HDR 3 for the first time to iPad Pro. And in low-light conditions, the ISP and LiDAR Scanner quickly and accurately focus images and videos to capture incredible details from almost no light at all.
- The Magic Keyboard, which offers a comfortable typing experience with backlit keys, an integrated trackpad, and its floating design, now comes in a gorgeous new White colour.
- iPadOS 14.5, which will be available to iPad customers starting next week, comes with new additions, including expanded language support for Apple Pencil features like Scribble and Smart Selection, new emoji, support for the latest gaming controllers, and the ability to share lyrics and see top songs in cities around the world with Apple Music.
Committed to the Environment
Today, Apple is carbon neutral for global corporate operations, and by 2030, plans to have net zero climate impact across the entire business, which includes manufacturing supply chains and all product life cycles. This means that every Apple device sold, from material collection, component manufacturing, assembly, transport, customer use, charging, all the way through recycling and material recovery, will be 100 per cent carbon neutral.
iPad Pro now features an enclosure made with 100 per cent recycled aluminium, and 100 per cent recycled rare earth elements in the magnets of the speakers and enclosure. iPad Pro remains free of harmful substances, meeting Apple’s high standards for environmental responsibility in materials, renewable electricity, and energy efficiency, and uses wood fibre in the packaging that is recycled or comes from responsibly managed forests.
Pricing and Availability
- The new iPad Pro is available to order beginning Friday, 30 April, on apple.com/auand in the Apple Store app in 31 countries and regions. iPad Pro will be available in Apple Store locations in the second half of May.
- The new 11-inch and 12.9-inch iPad Pro will be available in silver and space grey finishes. iPad Pro is available in 128GB, 256GB, 512GB, 1TB, and 2TB configurations3 — providing pro customers more room for their apps and content.
- The 11-inch iPad Pro starts at RRP A$1199 inc. GST for the Wi-Fi model and RRP A$1449 inc. GST for the Wi-Fi + Cellular model, and the 12.9-inch iPad Pro starts at RRP A$1649 inc. GST for the Wi-Fi model and RRP A$1899 inc. GST for the Wi-Fi + Cellular model from apple.com/au.
- Education pricing is available to current and newly accepted university students and their parents, as well as faculty, staff, and homeschool teachers of all grade levels. The new 11-inch iPad Pro starts at RRP A$1129 inc. GST, and the 12.9-inch iPad Pro starts at RRP A$1509 inc. GST. The second-generation Apple Pencil is available for RRP A$189 inc. GST, and the Smart Keyboard Folio for the new iPad Pro is available for RRP A$239 inc. GST for the 11-inch iPad Pro and RRP A$279 inc. GST for the 12.9-inch iPad Pro for university students. The Magic Keyboard for iPad Pro will be available for university students at RRP A$419 inc. GST for the 11-inch iPad Pro and RRP A$509 inc. GST for the 12.9-inch iPad Pro. For more information visit apple.com/au-hed/shop.