Apple’s poor naming convention is starting to get really annoying. The company on Monday launched the new iPad Pro and called it the iPad Pro. The difference being the latest launch was a 9.7 inch tablet compared to its predecessor the 12.9 inch iPad Pro. Its hard enough getting a grip on the features of the various models of Apple’s tablets and the absurd naming convention doesn’t make things any clearer. Hopefully, this post will help you get a better understanding of what to expect in the 12.9 inch iPad Pro, 9.7 inch iPad Pro and the 9.7 inch Air 2.
Before we head to the feature comparison note that the original iPad Air has been discontinued. The price of the iPad Air 2 has been reduced by $100 and you can no longer buy a 128GB iPad Air 2.
The New iPad Pro vs the 12.9-inch iPad Pro vs Air 2
Some of the key points of to note between the new 9.7 inch and 12.9 inch iPad Pro models are:
Dimensions: The 9.7-inch iPad Pro and iPad Air 2: 9.4 x 6.6 x 0.24 inches; 0.96 pounds (Wi-Fi model); The 12.9-inch iPad Pro: 12.0 x 8.68 x 0.27 inches; 1.57 pounds (Wi-Fi model)
Processor: The 9.7-inch iPad Pro has the same processor as the 12.9-inch iPad Pro: A 64-bit A9X processor with an M9 motion coprocessor. The iPad Air 2 has the A8X processor, which is about 1.8 times slower than the A9X.
Screen size: The 9.7-inch iPad Pro is smaller, but has a wider color gamut with the same DCI(P3) support found in the Retina 5K iMac. It also supports True Tone, a feature that dynamically adjusts the screen’s white balance based on the room lighting. This provides accurate colors on a paper-white screen. True Tone is not available in the current 12.9-inch iPad Pro. The 9.7-inch iPad Air 2 has does not support either the color gamut nor True Tone.
Resolution: The 9.7-inch iPad Pro has a resolution of 2048×1536 as does the iPad Air 2. The 12.9-inch iPad Pro has a resolution of 2732×2048. Both have fully-laminated displays with fingerprint-resistant oleophobic coating and antireflective coating.
Battery Life: The 9.7-inch iPad Pro has a built-in 27.5-watt-hour rechargeable battery. The 12.9-inch iPad Pro has a built-in 38.5-watt-hour rechargeable battery. Both models support 10 hours of Web access, video watching, or music listening; and 9 hours for the cellular models.The iPad Air 2 has a built-in 27.3-watt-hour rechargeable battery that can last 10 hours.
Apple Pencil: The Apple Pencil works on both devices and you can even charge the pencil by plugging it into the 9.7-inch iPad Pro’s Lightning port. Air 2 does not have Apple Pencil support.
Camera: The iSight camera for the 9.7-inch iPad Pro is an improvement over the 12.9 model. It shoots 12 MP photos compared to the 8 MP camera in the 12.9-inch iPad Pro. The 9.7-inch iPad Pro also has improved local tone mapping and noise reduction. Live Photos, autofocus with Focus Pixels, True Tone flash, auto HDR, and a sapphire crystal lens cover are some of the other features supported by the new iPad Pro, which is not available in the 12.9 inch model. The iPad Air 2 iSight camera has an 8 MP like the 12.9 inch model.
Video: The 9.7-inch iPad Pro can capture 4K video at 30 fps (frames per second); the 12.9-inch iPad Pro’s highest video resolution is 1080p at 30 fps. The 9.7-inch iPad Pro can shoot at 1080p as well, but it has the option to shoot at 60 or 30 fps. The 9.7-inch iPad Pro has slow-motion video support at 1080p at 120 fps and at 720p at 240 fps.
The 12.9-inch iPad Pro’s slow-motion support is at 720p at 120 fps only. FaceTime camera on the 9.7-inch iPad Pro gets an upgrade with a 5MP camera with Retina flash; the 12.9-inch iPad Pro’s FaceTime camera is only 1.2 MP without Retina flash.
The Air 2 can shoot 1080p videos at 30 fps. FaceTime camera on the Air 2 is like the 12.9-inch iPad Pro – a 1.2 MP camera with the ability to capture 720p video. So comparatively, the 9.7-inch iPad Pro has a better set of cameras.
For more tech spec comparison, check out the official web page.
Color Variants of 9.7 Inch iPad Pro
Gold, silver, space gray, and rose gold.
Pricing of 9.7 Inch iPad Pro
Here is the pricing in the U.S.
- 32GB: $599
- 128GB: $749
- 256GB: $899
Wi-Fi and Cellular
- 32GB: $729
- 128GB: $879
- 256GB: $1,029
Availability of 9.7 Inch iPad Pro
The 9.7-inch new iPad Pro will be available for pre-order starting Thursday, March 24 on Apple.com in Australia, Canada, China (Wi-Fi models only), France, Germany, Hong Kong, Japan, New Zealand, Puerto Rico, Singapore, the U.K., U.S. Virgin Islands and the United States. The device will start shipping from March 31. The 9.7-inch iPad Pro will be available in Apple Stores from March 31 and through select carriers and Apple Authorized Resellers in the countries previously mentioned. As for the rest of the world, the 9.7-inch iPad Pro will start shipping from early April.