Why The 12.9-Inch iPad Pro Refresh Will Be The One To Buy Over The 11-Inch Model

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Apple is preparing to refresh its iPad Pro tablets in “a matter of days,” according to reports. New 11-inch and 12.9-inch tablets are said to be on the way, packing Apple’s potent M2 SoC, delivering a performance uplift of approximately 20% from the previous generation. However, the larger (and costlier) model may be particularly attractive as it expected to remain as the only model to feature Mini-LED screen technology.

New Apple iPad Pro devices are code-named J617 and J620, according to Mark Gurman, the seasoned Apple news insider at Bloomberg. In Gurman’s weekly email he said that the new iPad Pro designs will come packing the latest and greatest ‘Apple Silicon’—the Apple M2 SoC—as found in the newest MacBook Air.

It has been 18 months since the last iPad Pro refresh, and the M2 will inject a decent shot of extra speed to Apple’s line of content creator tilted premium tablets. The move from M1 to M2 processor will be more modest than from the A-series, but a 20% performance gain is still decent gen-to-gen. Moreover, the upgraded processors are claimed to deliver efficiency gains under the hood.

Though the new iPad Pros will look similar to their predecessors—sticking with the flat-edge design aesthetic for the fourth year—the 12.9-inch model is expected to benefit from improved visuals. Both current gen iPad Pro models feature Apple Liquid Retina displays with fully laminated True Tone technology. The larger current gen model has a Mini-LED display, and industry insiders say that this differentiation will remain in place. Mini-LED is attractive for delivering near-OLED reproduction of deep blacks, and greatly enhanced contrast, thanks to its backlighting system with "full‑array local dimming zones" in the current gen iPad Pro 12.9-inch model. Ross Young, CEO of Display Supply Chain Consultants (DSCC) is certain that this difference will continue to mean the larger model is the premium model to choose for a great screen.

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Current Gen iPad Pro 12.9-inch Mini-LED technology explainer

There are some more tasty iPad morsels in Gurman’s email about all things new in the Apple universe. If the iPad Pro models aren’t attractive due to price, size, or some other reason, you might be interested in a purported new entry level iPad with USB Type-C. It very likely won’t be powered by an M1 or M2 chip—using an A-series processor instead. One of the other new aspects of this accessibly priced product is that it is expected to come with an iPad Pro style makeover.

Another interesting rumor is that Apple is preparing “a new accessory that lets you dock [like] the [Google] Pixel Tablet and use it like a smart display and home-control device,” says Gurman. We look forward to checking out Apple’s first-party dock aimed smart home style usage. Lastly, Apple iPadOS 16.1 is expected to be released in about a week’s time. This will be iPad users’ first version of iOS 16.