It’s definitely an answer to the Microsoft Surface, no doubt about it. It’s roughly the same size, 12.9” and, although you can’t directly compare performance as it runs iOS, it certainly looks speedy and the specs look pretty impressive.
There are two major areas that Apple iPad’s have missed in comparison to the Surface, pen input and poor multi-tasking capabilities. Both look to be resolved with the iPad Pro and iOS9.
There is a new way to interact with the Pro, the Apple Pencil. Due to new screen technology in the Pro, the Pencil is a fully functioning pressure sensitive device. It works in all the included apps, plus the Microsoft Office suite, allowing you to take notes and annotate anything. Same goes for design products, like Adobe, allowing you to get pretty creative with the combo.
Multi-tasking is changing with iOS9 (out on 16th September), so it’s not specific to the iPad Pro. A number of new features come with the new iOS version (Slide Over, Split View and Picture in Picture) to improve productivity on the iPad. You will now be able to have true side by side apps and switch between them easier than before. Add in the larger size and resolution of the Pro and get lot more screen space to work with.
For me, it’s the iPad I’ve been waiting for. I don’t own a Surface but long wanted an iPad with proper stylus input for note taking as I’ve been pretty envious of the Surface owners in our office at meetings.
I guess the question for you is, is it for you? If you have bought into the Apple eco-system then yes, it will be. The productivity apps available for iOS are excellent (see my other post) and it’s now as flexible as other devices and operating systems. If you have a Surface currently, or have invested in the Microsoft suite, then there may not be a reason to switch. The Surface Pro 4 has also been recently released.
But then again, sometimes the decision is more about want rather than need, and I want one!
Expect a review in November when I get my hands on one!…