It’s literally been years now that we’ve been fielding rumors of a new, larger-sized iPad. Would Apple ever push north of 10 inches and give us an iPad that would compete with larger laptops to supercharge mobile productivity? Today at its September event, Apple put those rumors to rest as it formally announced the iPad Pro.
The tablet introduces Apple’s new A9X SoC, offering what Apple claims is 1.8 times the performance of the A8X. That spells performance that outdoes the majority of laptops out there (and makes it clear just which users Apple is going after here).
Apple says to expect ten hours of battery life from the 6.9mm-thick tablet.
As rumored, Apple has a new keyboard accessory to go with the iPad Pro. The fabric-covered keyboard connects thanks to a new “smart” connector.
But that’s not the only accessory debuting alongside this largest iPad yet, and rumors of pen input are also panning out, as Apple introduces its Pencil stylus.
The Pencil senses pressure and tilt, and the iPad Pro allows you to use Pencil simultaneously with finger input. Microsoft even showed up (how far we’ve come) to help demo what’s possible with Pencil input, talking about some of the ways stylus support can enhance Office.
Pricing starts at just about $800 for the 32GB model. The 128GB model will go for $950 – no 64GB model, after all. And while there will be an LTE option, it looks like cellular connectivity is constrained to the 128GB tablet, bumping the price up to $1080.
The Apple Pencil costs $100 on its own, and the Smart Keyboard will fetch an extra $170.
Sales of the iPad Pro and its accessories will get underway this November.