iPad Air vs iPad Pro: Buying guide!

The iPad Pro is Apple’s best in class offering to showcase the future of computing. Of course, it’s a great tablet as well but it’s unclear what exactly it aims to do. It packs so much raw computing power with very little actual use in the real world as iPadOS is very limiting. iPads have largely improved in the multitasking segment but it’s just not as smooth as desktop class operating systems such as macOS or Windows.

The iPad Pro is a great machine but it’s not worth investing in if you just need a tablet that is future proof and looks modern. Apple unveiled the updated iPad Air at its September event alongside the new Apple Watch Series 6 & Apple Watch SE. The iPad Air uses a very similar design language as that of the iPad Pro with uniform bezels across the screen, however the bezels are slightly thicker on the iPad Air.

iPad Air vs iPad Pro: Buying guide!

Slightly different screen dimensions

The iPad Air also has a slightly 0.1” smaller screen to accommodate the thicker bezels but it’s such a small difference that it can be ignored altogether unless an extra 0.1” is essential to you. The iPad Air also uses an updated TouchID mechanism which is present on the power button now instead of the home button as on the previous gen iPad Air. To add to that, there is no home button on the iPad Air similar to the iPad Pro and the new flagship iPhone models. 

The iPad Air packs the A13 Bionic chip – the same chip found on the latest iPhone 12. On the other hand, the iPad Pro packs the A12Z Bionic chip. The A13 Bionic has an edge over the A12Z in terms of CPU performance and it is also the first 5nm chip. However, the A12Z has a much faster GPU – making the “Pro” name sound real.

The iPad Air costs $599 for the base variant whereas the iPad Pro starts at $799. The iPad Air is a much better deal as it packs almost the essential features with the latest A13 Bionic chip. However, if you need to have a high refresh rate 120Hz display, the iPad Pro is the only choice.