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During today’s “Let Us Loop You In” event at Apple’s Town Hall, the company introduced several new Apple Watch bands, a tvOS update and the release of iOS 9.3, as well as their new 4-inch iPhone, the iPhone SE. To round out the event, Apple finally formally introduced their newest iPad – the 9.7-inch iPad Pro.
Apple senior VP of worldwide marketing, Phil Schiller, introduced the new iPad, which packs all of the same technology (and more) of the 12.9-inch iPad Pro into their most popular iPad size – 9.7 inches. The demonstration began by highlighting the incredible display technology that the new iPad Pro offers.
The iPad Pro’s display is 40% less reflective than that of the iPad Air 2 – important for professionals who will spend a good portion of their day looking at the screen. The display is also 25% brighter, and offers 25% greater color saturation that on the iPad Air 2, offering a more accurate and beautiful picture. Schiller also pointed out that not only does the display on the new iPad Pro work with their new Night Shift feature, but it also offers new “True Tone Display” technology, which adjusts the color temperature of the screen based on the ambient light the iPad is currently operating in.
Schiller went on to highlight the incredible hardware in the new iPad Pro. It features the same four-speaker audio that was introduced with the 12.9-inch iPad Pro, which optimizes the sound depending on the orientation of the device, as well as the same A9X chip and M9 motion co-processor, which Schiller claims is capable graphics performance superior to an Xbox 360 in the small 9.7-inch body.
The device supports a wide range of Apple accessories, including the Apple Pencil and a new proportionally-sized Smart Keyboard accessory. Lastly, the new iPad also features a 12MP iSight camera capable of capturing 4k video, as well as a 5MP front-facing FaceTime HD camera.
The 9.7-inch iPad Pro will be available in four colors – Silver, Gold, Space Gray, and Rose Gold, a first for any of Apple’s iPad models. The 32GB model will be made available for $599, with a 128GB model available for $749, and a new 256GB model for $899. Schiller also mentioned that the 12.9-inch iPad Pro will be gaining a 256GB option, available for $1099. Online orders for the new device will begin this coming Thursday, March 24, and devices will begin shipping the following week on March 31.