If you listen to the BYOD podcast (and you should) you will already know that I did a complete 180 over ordering a new iPad. I don’t often get caught up in reviews or hype, but when the reviews are so overwhelmingly positive it’s hard to not want to try one out.
So I received my unit a couple of weeks ago and I’ve been over the moon with it ever since. My initial impressions break down into only two areas that really matter so here they are.
One of the areas other people have made a big deal about is the fantastic screen. This is something I initially very dismissive about, granted the iPad is essentially a screen with computing power, however I was unsure of the value of this in general usage.
When I first took the unit out of the box and began the set up process I though there was something wrong with my brain. The ProMotion display feels very wrong to start with, almost as if the screen is false. It makes such a huge difference to the smoothness of movement on the screen that going back to a regular refresh rate feels sluggish and old.
Whilst going through the set up process it is also immediately obvious how much of a different that the 0.8inch also makes to the experience. I have to keep reminding myself that the unit is more or less the same size. The squeezed bezels make the 10.5” 2224x1668 screen feel much larger than it is. The experience is far more immersive and feels much larger than the 9.7” version.
The ProMotion update and the larger display make the iPad fell like your holding the future. The experience gives the impression you are using a piece of modern technology, after spending 4 years carrying around a 9.7inch version this never version feels like the future, and the right mix between screen and bezels.
I cant think of anything worse than a bezel less iPad, there needs to be an area to comfortably grip with using and reading, and all the rejection the colony in the world sometimes cant make up for a bezel. Due to the increased width of the screen I have also found myself using more in landscape.
With the footprint bing not much bigger than the old version, this allows for the unit to still be very portable. I am not sure if again my mind is playing tricks on me because of the increased screen real estate but the unit does feel larger. However holding the iPad, even one handed, takes no more effort than the ‘regular’ version we are used to.
The size makes little difference when handling and also using tablet pockets or pouches. Both my shoulder bag and backpack, with these first world options included, fit the new iPad Pro in comfortably.
The extra size does make a huge difference to the Smart Keyboard, in a very positive way. I never struggled with the old version, but it may be one of those cases that you don’t know what you’re missing. The keys are much better spaced and typing is easier to get used to, especially for those that switch between an iPad and laptop.
Its hard for me not to strongly recommend the new iPad Pro. I realise now that the benefits I didn’t think were worth the upgrade actually make an immense difference. However I also realise that the performance increases or those made to the screen may make little difference to someone working on their iPad.
For someone so immersed in using my iPad as my computer the new version has improved things to a level I didn’t think was possible from small upgrades. The technology used shows that Apple have really thought about the end user and what they may use it for.
In reality through if you have a current 9.7” version perhaps think about upgrading when iOS11 launches. The new hardware will really shine once the OS is updated - it is great to use right now but will get much better. Even when using the new iOS11 beta the improvements make it even more useful.
I am not going to bother reviewing the iPad like I did the 9.7” version, because I just don’t think I need to with some many great reviews out there already. I al very happy with the new version and will continue to use it as my computer as I have for the past 4 years.