Since the iPad first came onto the scene, we’ve been asking ourselves the question as to whether or not the next tablet release is going to kill the laptop once and for all. I’ve personally found the question to be a bit loaded – it’s like comparing “Apples” and oranges. But the question still presses on. So the question is, will the iPad Pro, with its gigantic (for a tablet) screen replace your laptop?
Though we won’t fully know the answer unless we get our hands on it this November, let’s take a look at some of its qualities, specifications, and capabilities, and see if this device is capable of replacing your laptop computer.
Display, bulk, and dimensions
The iPad Pro boasts a 12.9-inch retina display with a 2732 x 2048 resolution with 264 pixels per inch (or ppi). The newest Macbook meanwhile, has a 12-inch retina display with a 2304 x 1440 resolution.
The iPad Pro is weighed in at 713 grams (1.57 lbs), while the Macbook is at a notch higher at two pounds. We can assume the former will be as heavy if attached to a keyboard. In the thickness category, the former is a 6.9 mm while the Macbook is twice as thick at 13.1 mm.
In terms of carrying them around, the iPad Pro definitely has the advantage despite it having a larger screen. It’s not everyday you get to see a mobile device possessing a larger display than a laptop computer.
It will run on the iOS
The iPad Pro will run on the same operating system as your iPhone. In work-related matters, will this pan out?
Fortunately, the iOS 9 is well-suited for the iPad Pro: the operating system has multitasking, split-screen features which Apple says are tailor-made for the device. The company also mentioned that the new operating system is designed to make devices run more smoothly and respond more quickly.
Take note that the iPad Pro is still a mobile device, despite being freakishly large compared to its counterparts – my call is that the laptop really cannot be replaced unless iOS can provide the capabilities of OS X in full.
The Game Changer? Apple Pencil
Arguably one of the reasons why iPad Pro posts a distinct advantage over laptops is it being complemented by the Apple Pencil, a $99, high tech stylus paired with the device.
The Pencil is one of the most advanced styli in the world. It is pressure-sensitive and it’s comparable to using a real pen: when you write or draw something on the iPad Pro, it feels like ink or pain is flowing from the tip. You can use the pencil to take handwritten notes and more importantly, draw.
This alone makes it a must for professionals who rely on their artistic abilities to make a living, like architects and artists. Rather than use a laptop and a scanner to upload and send drawings, the iPad Pro can easily do both. So I would say, in that sense, for the artist: you are getting closer to ditching the laptop.
I must admit that the selection of creative suites in iOS is becoming pretty robust. Some of the most notable ones include:
- Notes – this built-in app can be used to…well…take notes. The Apple Pencil can be used in doing so.
- iMovie – perfect if you need to edit videos, whether as a hobby or for work. Though video editors prefer software like Final Cut and Vegas, iMovie has the edge in simplicity and intuitiveness.
- Pages – primarily a word processing app.
Other mainstay apps and features, like Safari, Photo Booth, and Mail are also present. There will be third-party applications – which can support Apple Pencil and iPad Pro’s new features – on the App Store too.
Microsoft Office and Photoshop Fix
Yes, the iPad Pro supports Microsoft Office applications. Ironically, Microsoft presented it during Apple’s event: it’s a story you don’t get to hear everyday.
The Office apps support the device’s multitasking features. For example, you can work on an MS Word document and a Powerpoint presentation simultaneously via split screen. It has also been optimized for Spotlight, supports the iPad Pro’s external keyboard shortcuts, and is compatible with the Pencil. Though this has not been talked about yet, we assume you can print documents straight from your iPad Pro by connecting your device with a Bluetooth or wireless printer.
Meanwhile, Adobe is set release a new Photoshop for iOS on October, called Photoshop Fix. It was presented during Apple’s keynote event two weeks ago and is works well with the iPad Pro.
Verdict: iPad Pro or MacBook?
Though the iPad Pro seems like a must-have device, it’s not for everybody. The Apple Pencil is awesome and all, but to fully utilize it, you have to be an artist or someone who works in design. Photoshop and MS Office are on laptops as well.
The iPad Pro offers the functionality of a laptop on a mobile device, but it’s not enough to replace your laptop if all you’re going to do is simply use it to edit spreadsheets, create presentations, and write documents.