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Apple Launches New 12.9″ iPad Pro with Apple Pencil, Smart Keyboard

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The “little birdies” were right: Apple today unveiled the iPad Pro at its “Hey Siri” media event. The tablet has a 12.9-inch display and features a resolution of 2732 × 2048 (5.6 million pixels), with a width the same as the length of the iPad Air.

ipad pro specs

“iPad Pro is the most advanced and powerful iPad we have ever made. Its beautiful and large 12.9-inch Retina display has 5.6 million pixels and provides an immersive experience for content and apps. The iPad Pro is far and away the fastest iOS device we have ever made — its A9X chip beats most portable PCs in both CPU and graphics tasks, but is thin and light enough to hold all day,” said Philip Schiller, Apple’s senior vice president of Worldwide Marketing. “The innovative Apple Pencil and new Smart Keyboard enable users to customize their iPad Pro experience to the particular apps they use and the work they do, making iPad Pro ideal for everything from professional productivity to advanced 3D design.”

The iPad Pro incorporates a 64-bit A9X processor, a 1.6-times faster chip than that of the iPad Air 2, with up to twice as fast graphics. Phil Schiller described it as “desktop-class performance”, as the iPad Pro is faster than 80% of the PCs shipped in the past six months, and the graphics are faster than 90% of those PCs.

The new gigantic tablet measures 6.9 mm thick and weighs 1.57 pounds. It incorporates a four-speaker audio system providing a powerful, clear and rich stereo sound, and a refined unibody enclosure of anodized aluminum gives iPad Pro a sturdy feel with a thin and light design that is easy to hold. Despite its huge screen, the iPad Pro has a 10-hour battery life (standard for iPads).

ipad pro multitasking

Apple also introduced two new accessories for the iPad Pro: the Smart Keyboard and the Apple Pencil. The former is a Surface-like physical keyboard for the iPad Pro that connects to the device without Bluetooth through a new connector on the side called the Smart Connector, which carries power and data to the keyboard. It is covered in custom woven fabric and features keys that provide the accuracy, stability and satisfying key feel of standard keyboards, but it can be transformed into a Smart Cover.

The second accessory is the Apple Pencil, which incorporates “highly responsive sensors that can sense the difference between pressure, tilt and stroke. The Apple Pencil works with popular apps like Mail, Notes, Procreate and Office 365 for iPad, offering new levels of creativity and productivity.

The iPad Pro launches in November in three colours: silver, space gray, and gold, at a starting price of $799 (USD) for the 32 GB Wi-Fi-only model, up to $949 for the 128 GB Wi-Fi-only model, and $1,079 for the WiFi+LTE model with the same storage.

The Apple Pencil costs $99 and the Smart Keyboard, $169. They will all be available in November.

Image credit: The Verge

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