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The iPad Pro Promises An Ecosystem For Creatives Share This on LinkedIn   Share This on Google   Tweet This   Forward This

9 September 2015

Apple introduced a larger iPad today but size was only one of its wrinkles. It features the highest resolution in an Apple product, a processor so fast it handles graphics like a desktop, expanded memory, 10-hour battery life and a weight about that of the original iPad. But the accessories Apple announced along with it may be the more interesting part of the story.

iPad Pro. Just three colors.

The Apple Pencil turns the iPad into a graphics device that can register changes in pressure and tilt as you draw. The $99 device has a 12-hour battery and recharges via a Lightning connector hidden in its top end.

Apple also introduced a $199 Smart Cover that includes a Smart Keyboard which communicates with the iPad Pro through a magnetic Smart Connector port. The 4mm thin keyboard is made from "a sheet of highly durable custom-woven fabric that's laser ablated to form the shape of each key. The fabric also provides the spring-like tension for each key, eliminating the need for conventional mechanisms," Apple said.

Both the pencil and cover will ship in November, Apple said.

The iPad Pro itself starts at $799 for the WiFi-only 32-GB model and ranges to $1,079 for the cellular model with 128-GB of storage).


Specifications for the iPad Pro include:

Screen 12.9-inch screen
2732 x 2049 pixels
5.6 million pixels
Multi-Touch subsystem
Processors 64-bit A9X chip
M9 motion coprocessor
Sensors Touch ID
Three-axis gyro
Ambient light sensor
Audio Four speakers, one in each corner
iSight Camera 8-Mp photos
f2.4 aperture
Five-element lens
Hybrid IR filter
Backside illumination
Improved face detection
Exposure control
Panorama (up to 43-Mp)
Burst mode
Tap to focus
Photo geotagging
Timer mode
iSight Video 8-Mp photos
Timer mode
FaceTime Camera 1080p HD video recording (30 fps)
Slo-mo (120 fps)
Time-lapse video
Video image stabilization
Improved face detection
3x video zoom
Video geotagging
Dimensions 12 inches by 8.68 inches
0.27-inch thick
Weight 1.57 pounds
Power 38.5-watt-hour rechargeable lithium-polymer battery
Accessories Apple Pencil
Smart Keyboard


Adobe said it has been working on a suite of photo and video applications, collectively called Creative Cloud mobile apps to take advantage of the iPad Pro. That includes Project Rigel, which will be releases as Photoshop Fix, Adobe revealed. They already offer a range of apps for iOS like Photoshop Mix and Adobe Clip that run on screens as small as an iPhone. So they are hitting the ground running.

And Apple itself already has a set of apps including Photos and iMovie that run on iOS.

Pressure sensitivity isn't new to iOS but it has been restricted to specialized apps. Adobe first announced its ruler and pen in June 2013 before they were released as Ink and Slide the next year.

Whether it's thanks to the new chip in the iPad Pro or some other magic (like Bluetooth 4), the Apple Pencil advertises "virtually no lag."


With the iPad Pro, hardware may have at last caught up with the dreams of creatives who have long pined for a tablet with a responsive and pressure sensitive stylus to draw, sketch and retouch.

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