iPad Pro 2019 price, release date, features and the biggest leaks
Apple is quite comfortably the king of the tablets market, with the 2018 iPad Pro currently being the jewel in its crown. Evidently, we’re very excited to learn what the company has in store for what we’re dubbing the iPad Pro 2019, especially considering Microsoft’s recent launch of the Surface Pro X.
So when are we likely to see Apple’s next premium tablet, what will it look like, and what features can we expect? Given the relative freshness of the current model, there isn’t all that much information out there about the next iPad Pro, but here’s what we think we know so far.
iPad Pro 2019 release date – When is it out?
Here are the launch dates of previous editions of the iPad:
- iPad Pro 12.9 − September 2015
- iPad Pro 10.5 − March 2016
- iPad Pro 2017 − June 2017
- iPad Pro 2018 − October 2018
There’s no clear pattern to be had here — the launch dates are all over the place, so it’s hard to draw out any obvious conclusions from it. However, with the trend being for a wait slightly longer than a year in between Pro launches, an early-to-mid 2020 launch could be a decent bet.
iPad Pro 2019 price – How much will it cost?
The iPad Pro 2018 starts from £769 for the 11-inch model and £969 for the 12.9-inch model. We’d be quite surprised to see the iPad Pro 2019 vary much from those starting prices, especially as the improvements are likely to be limited to the internals.
However, Apple pretty much screwed over UK-based consumers with the 10.2-inch iPad 7 that launched in September. It starts at $329 (~£270) in the US, but retails for a whopping £349 in the UK. Something similar could well happen again, with Brits getting a raw deal based on the currency conversion mark-up.
iPad Pro 2019 – Performance
The iPad Pro 2019 will almost certainly run on a variant of the A13 Bionic, which is the name of the powerful chip that the iPhone 11 and iPhone 11 Pro both run on. The A13 Bionic is an update on the A12 Bionic that powered the iPhone XS. Last year’s iPad Pro, meanwhile, ran the A12X − which was a souped-up version of the A12.
The A13 Bionic uses the second generation of Apple’s 7nm process, which packs 8.5 billion transistors onto each chip (up from the 6.9 billion transistors of the A12 Bionic). It features 18 cores: six-core CPU, four-core GPU, and an eight-core Neural Engine processor, which is dedicated to handling on-board machine learning processes.
Four of the six cores on the CPU are low-powered, dedicated to handling basic operations, while two bigger performance cores won’t kick in until you’re doing something a lot more taxing.
However, along with powering basic functionality, the chip allows for special features on the latest range of iPhones, including 4K video capture at 60fps, “slofies” and Smart HDR functionality.
iPad Pro 2019 – Design and display
Apple completely ripped up its iPad design book for the iPad Pro 2018, with new squared-off edges, significantly reduced bezels, and the omission of the classic home button; the screen sizes even increased to 11-inches and 12.9-inches.
Most significantly of all, the proprietary Lightning port was replaced with the widely-compatible USB-C.
As the refreshed design was so well-received, we’re expecting the next iPad Pro to look more or less the same as last year’s efforts. Naturally, that would mean the display sizes will match the previous models.
We’re not holding our breath for a switch to OLED technology either. Apple made a lot of noise about the latest iPad Pro generation having super-responsive 120Hz display technology, and that’s something that can’t be achieved quite so easily with OLED.
Instead, analyst Ming-Chi Kuo believes that a switch to next-gen Mini-LED technology is in the offing. Mini-LEDs are expected to allow Apple to create thinner and lighter products without compromising on colour, contrast and HDR performance.
Along with the design benefits, Apple is reportedly turning to the technology to rely less on Samsung for its product displays – the Mini-LED display panel production will reportedly be led by LG Display – and avoid the negative effects of burn-in on LED screens.
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iPad Pro 2019 – Additional features
The iPad Pro 2018’s most notable feature had to be its second-generation Apple Pencil support.
The new stylus was a huge improvement over the original in several ways – providing a more compact form factor, wireless charging, a magnetised attachment system, and an anti-roll shape. It’s a fair bet that the third iPad Pro will introduce a few more tweaks to the stylus.
Elsewhere, we’d hope for the iPad Pro 2019 to offer an increased minimum storage amount, perhaps 128GB rather than the current 64GB because – let’s face it – that’s no-one’s idea of a ‘Pro’ spec. But cynically, the lower storage option might remain if only for Apple to advertise a lower starting price for the device.
The next iPad Pro could also feature a triple camera setup, similar to that of the iPhone 11 Pro, a change that would really set it apart from the rest of the tablet competition. It has been speculated that this is intended to allow users of the iPad Pro the ability to film and edit 4K video footage, as well as superior 3D imaging for augmented reality features.
But would people really care so much about camera quality on a tablet? The jury’s out on that one.