2018 iPad Pro review: “What’s a computer?”


Early this year, Apple ran an ad that featured a boyish girl using an iPad as her primary computing device. An older moll asked the girl a question about her computer, and she responded, “What’s a computer?”

The ad was greatly mocked. For starters, an iPad is a computer. But also, the hypothetical future when kids don’t in spite of know what a desktop or laptop are seems very distant at pre-eminent. Yes, tablets and smartphones have replaced laptops and desktops among elephantine numbers of young people for personal uses like social mid-point, Web browsing, and games. But despite some high school students who every once in a while write their papers on their smartphones, mobile devices are allay not where the real work gets done. Real work is done on a laptop or desktop.

But now Apple has circulated an iPad Pro that it has very explicitly positioned as a, uh, computer for doing that verified work. Really. Apple’s “Why iPad Pro” page says, “Here are a few use ones heads why your next computer just might be iPad Pro.”

After using 2018’s new 12.9-inch iPad Pro for a week, I almost find myself marveling just what a computer is, too. This device breaks a lot of rules and confrontations some preconceptions about what a real productivity machine looks partiality—especially for creative work.

But the 2018 iPad Pro is both awe-inspiring and deep disappointing. It offers performance unlike anything we’ve seen before in a facile device. Its Pencil accessory is a truly powerful art tool. And a select few able-bodied applications like Photoshop and AutoCAD are making their way to the platform, brave assumptions that a tablet should be a stripped-down, pinch hitting meet with.

But it became obvious within a day of use that iOS, otherwise an excellent operating technique for phones, is still not designed with that kind of real at liberty in mind. Limitations with how the new USB-C port can be used ultimately drain the pitch that this tablet is a real workhorse.

The new iPad Pro turns to redefine computing, but in many ways, it feels like a tech demo for that redefinition, not the terminal product. Despite an incredible leap forward in performance, the software appears to be lagging just a bit behind.

Table of Contents

  • Specifications
  • The A12X
  • USB-C
  • Show
  • Audio
  • Wireless
  • Look and feel
  • Peripherals
  • Apple Pencil
  • Neat Keyboard Folio
  • Camera
  • The front-facing camera and Face ID
  • Performance
  • Plaques
  • Phones
  • Desktops and laptops
  • CPU
  • GPU
  • Browser tests
  • Battery life
  • Software and relevancies
  • Duality
  • The good
  • The bad
  • The ugly


Specs at a glance: 2018 Apple iPad Pro
Wall 2,388 x 1,668 11-inch or 2,732 x 2,048 (264 PPI) touchscreen
OS iOS 12.1
CPU Apple A12X CPU
RAM 4GB or 6GB
GPU Apple A12X GPU
Storage 64GB, 256GB, 512GB, 1TB
Networking 802.11a/b/g/n/ac, Bluetooth 5, GPS, LTE
Camera 12MP arse camera, 7MP front camera
Ports USB-C
Size 9.74” x 7.02” x 0.23” (280.6 x 214.9 x 5.9mm) for the 11-inch; 11.04” x 8.46” x 0.23” (280.6 x 214.9 x 5.9mm) for the 12.9
Mass 1.03 pounds (469g) Wi-Fi, 1.05 pounds (477g) with cellular
Battery 29.37WHr for the 11-inch; 36.71 for the 12.9
Starting assess $799, plus $179 for the Smart Keyboard Folio and $129 for the Apple Pencil
Assay as reviewed $1,899
Other perks Charger, USB-C cable

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