iPad Pro now available for sale

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The iPad Pro features a high resolution 12.9" screen.
The iPad Pro features a high resolution 12.9″ screen.

Apple’s new iPad Pro went on sale this morning, available for order from the Apple online store or through its retail app. Orders placed this morning are scheduled to arrive this Friday, November 13. You’ll also be able to buy one in person at Apple’s retail store on Friday as well.

The all new iPad Pro features a large 12.9″ screen and is primarily targeted towards students, creative professionals and those that prefer an iPad for daily use instead of a laptop. The screen has a high-resolution 2,732 x 2,048 pixel display, and the larger allows the on-screen keyboard to be presented at a size comparable to what you’d find on a similar sized 13″ laptop.

The iPad Pro features both a front and rear facing camera, and 4 speakers located on both the top and bottom of the tablet (2 more than the iPad Air). It incorporates a brand new A9X processor that Apple claims to be better performing than 80% of the portable PCs sold in the last year. Battery life is advertised to be the same as existing iPads at 10 hours, but the weight comes in at only 1.57 lbs–just a hair more than the original iPad weighed when it was launched in 2010. It’s also remarkably thin for the large size, coming in at 6.9mm, compared to 6.1mm for the iPad Air 2.

Like the iPad Air 2, it supports the new iOS 9 split-screen feature, making it a great display for running two apps side by side. It also includes a built-in barometer and anti-reflective screen coating, which we’ve found to be a real improvement over the traditional glossy iPad screen.

A stylus is available as an accessory to help with note-taking and drawing.
A stylus is available as an accessory to help with note-taking and drawing.

To add additional capability you can add Apple’s smart keyboard accessory (picture a Microsoft Surface cover) for a better typing experience. A stylus is also available as an option, called Pencil, that is sensitive to both tilt and pressure to enable realistic note-taking and drawing on the tablet.

There are 3 iPad Pro models to choose from, starting with the 32GB WiFi-only model selling for $799 and $949 for 128GB. A 128GB Wi-Fi+Cellular model is available for $1,079, which also includes an internal GPS. The smart keyboard cover will retail for $169 and the Pencil stylus goes for $99.

The iPad Pro will be a tight fit in most cockpits, though some may want to make use of the the larger size to run 2 apps simultaneously with the iOS 9 split-screen multitasking feature. We can also see some value in using the iPad Pro as large panel-mount display for experimental airplanes, since it would be able to dedicate plenty of real estate to both flight instruments and a GPS moving map.

8 COMMENTS

  1. Thanks to the backside camera the new iPad pro is really great to replace the side windows of a plane and if Apple would build in a tilted camera into their next (bigger) model I could replace the windshield too.

  2. Way, way too big.

    I prefer an iPad mini with Foreflight/Stratus 2s for maps & charts, and an iPad 3 for backup, tucked in a cabin pocket by my left knee. The smaller iPad sits tilted towards me in one of those Ram mini holders afixed to the yoke bar of a Beech 33. It does not obstruct my view of Garmin moving maps nor the power quadrant. Simple clean set up.

  3. I don’t see a place in general aviation for the iPad Pro. Maybe in the classroom, but certainly not in the flight deck.

    As a CFI, I see instructors possibly using the iPad Pro for one-on-one interactive ground lessons. That’s about the usefulness of this mobile-plasma TV.

    Maybe I’m just not that creative. Does anyone have any suggestions on how the iPad Pro can be of use in aviation?

  4. Until Apple comes up with a way to be able to directly import data (I.e. SD card, USB, etc.) it is WORTHLESS. Just more of the same, a little bigger.

  5. Way too big, and big on the price too. Mini or Air2 are much better alternatives. Can’t have this get in the way in most cramped GA cockpits.

  6. I tried the iPad Pro in my C182. It was nice – screen was great…. But a bit too big – I am upgrading to the iPad Air 2

  7. I love my Ipad Mini 4th gen (last model?) size is perfect for a piston/prop cockpit; with the Appaero Stratus 2S I’m all set for ‘positional awareness’ in IMC/night flight
    There’s no way PIC should yoke mount a iPad Pro, or an ipad for that matter – blocks the 6-pack, panel
    BTW, there’s Apple Lighting USB & SD card adaptors available

  8. I’m seriously considering upgrading to the iPad Pro from my Air 2. My first tablet in my Bonanza was a 12″ Motion Computing tablet sitting on my lap. It used a stylus and worked great running JeppView with XM Weather. It was essentially the same size as the iPad Pro. I don’t use the iPad Mini due to its small screen. Bigger is better if you have the room. I have a yoke mount for my iPad Air 2 but I’m not sure about yoke mounting the Pro. I’ll have to do some experimenting. It might work in landscape mode. My Air 2 mounts nicely in portrait mode.

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