Review: Apple 9.7-inch iPad Pro | iLounge

Review

Review: Apple 9.7-inch iPad Pro

A-
Highly Recommended

Company: Apple

Model: (9.7-inch) iPad Pro

MSRP: $599-$1029

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Phil Dzikiy

Pros: Great form factor is easier to hold than larger Pro. Less expensive than larger Pro. Technology represents a step up from iPad Air 2 at same size. A very fast tablet. Great, bright display with True Tone. The best cameras ever seen on iPad. Very good battery life. Includes multi-touch display and Smart Connector in a smaller package. Untethered Hey Siri is an exclusive on iPad. More LTE bands with LTE Advanced in Wi-Fi + Cellular model. Only iPad Pro with 32GB Cellular edition.

Cons: Expensive compared to current iPad Air 2 price, and extra features may not be worth it to a fair number of prospective users. Smaller screen makes for a slightly diminished drawing/typing experience compared to larger Pro. Audio not as good as larger Pro. Just a tad slower than larger Pro. Not compatible with iPad Air 2 cases despite same tablet size.

The 9.7” iPad Pro’s body and design are simple enough to understand: it’s an iPad Pro in the form factor of an iPad Air 2. This new iPad Pro is exactly the same size and weight as an iPad Air 2 — it’s 9.4” x 6.6” x 0.24”, weighing .96 pounds (the cellular model weighs .98 pounds). The small changes to the exterior clearly illustrate the differences between the 9.7” Pro and the Air. There are four stereo speakers, two each on the top and bottom of the iPad. The Pro’s Smart Connector, meant to connect and power certain accessories such as keyboards, is found on the left side of the iPad. And the rear camera now features a raised bump, as we’ve seen on the iPhone 6/6s/Plus models. Underneath the camera is a True Tone Flash, which is new to iPad.


There’s not much more to say about the body — if you’ve seen or held an iPad Air 2, you know what you’re getting. If you’re not familiar with that iPad, we’ll just tell you that it’s a great design and feels nice and light. The 9.7” iPad Pro is big enough to have an immersive screen presence, but small enough to hold comfortably. There’s a reason it’s the standard size. If you’re looking to use an old iPad Air 2 case, it’ll fit, but you won’t be able to take full advantage of the new iPad’s feature set.

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Editors' Note: iLounge only reviews products in "final" form, but many companies now change their offerings - sometimes several times - after our reviews have been published. This iLounge article provides more information on this practice, known as revving.

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