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Last week, Apple announced and made available to order its sixth-generation iPad — the second in its series of ultra low-cost, but remarkably well-spec’d, tablets computers built on the venerable 9.7-inch form-factor.
While the addition of Apple Pencil support is arguably among the new tablet’s most impressive feature additions, allowing budget-minded customers the opportunity to interact with Apple’s advanced stylus on the device’s relatively unchanged display — there’s a number of other component upgrades and worthy enhancements that make the latest iPad one of Apple’s most promising.
Though it’s not quite “Pro-grade,” to be sure.
- Apple’s latest iPad Pro models boast 10.5- and 12.9-inch LED-backlit displays.
- The company stuck with its mainstream form-factor for the sixth-generation model with the same basic design, 9.7-inch display, and iconic Home Button of its predecessor.
- Although all three full-size iPad models (9.7-, 10.5-, and 12.9-inch) boast varying screen resolutions of 2,048 x 1,536, 2,224 x 1,668, and 2,732 x 2,048, all three feature the same pixel density of ~264 ppi.
- The one key area where iPad Pro pulls away from the pack is given its inclusion of Apple’s ProMotion display technology, which is designed to raise or lower the screen refresh rate depending on the intensity and demand of its user’s activities.
- Both iPad Pro models ship with True Tone and Wide Color (P3) image enhancing displays, rendering them capable of reproducing a more realistic, true-to-life color saturation. The sixth-gen iPad does not.
- Apple’s new sixth-generation iPad is equipped with a zippy, quad-core A10 Fusion SoC clocked at 2.2 GHz, which is certainly fast in its own respect, and especially considering its clear “education-centric” nature.
- Apple’s 10.5- and 12.9-inch iPad Pros, in comparison, are absolute beasts powered by the company’s hexa-core (six-core) A10X SoC, which is clocked at 2.39 GHz per core.
- iPad Pro also takes the cake when it comes to onboard RAM, sporting a total of 4 GB in each.
- The 2018 iPad refresh boasts just 2 GB of RAM.
- Sadly, Apple’s sixth-generation iPad lacks any notable camera upgrades in comparison to its predecessor, and sports the same 8MP rear-facing iSight camera and 1.2 MP front-facing FaceTime cameras — capable of capturing videos in 1080p and 720p HD, respectively.
- Both the 10.5- and 12.9-inch iPad Pros, in comparison, boast significantly upgraded camera hardware including iPhone 7-grade 12 MP rear-facing and 7 MP front-facing camera lenses with their associated slate of advanced features like auto-focus, quad-LED Dual-tone flashand f/1.8 apertures.
Of course, among the most important variables of consideration for most would-be iPad buyers is the cost-value ratio of the tablet they’re looking to buy.
- While Apple’s 2018 iPad (with Wi-Fi only) comes in either 32 GB or 128 GB storage capacities for $329 or $429, iPad Pro really ups the ante (and the price) in comparison.
- A 10.5-inch iPad Pro (with Wi-Fi only) comes in either 64 GB, 256 GB or 512 GB capacities, retailing for $649, $799, or $999.
- The (Wi-Fi only) 12.9-inch iPad Pro, boasting the same storage capacities, retails for $799, $949, or $1,149, respectively.
- And if you’re looking for the addition of Cellular/LTE connectivity on any of the available iPad models, regardless of their storage capacity, you can go ahead and tack on an additional $130.
Remember that for about half the price of a base-model iPad Pro, you get essentially the same Apple Pencil functionality on Apple’s sixth-gen iPad.
While an Apple Pencil will cost you an extra $99, it’s also worth noting that Apple and Logitech announced a new stylus option alongside the sixth-gen iPad that’s also about half the price.
At the end of the day, it really all boils down to a matter of what you’re planning to use your iPad for most. With that being said, Apple’s latest sixth-gen iPad will likely be more than capable to suit all of your needs.