12.9–inch iPad Pro (2021)
Mac Life|August 2021
Apple’s largest tablet is better than ever — if you can afford it
By Rob Mead-Green

1,000,000:1 contrast ratio, 1,600 nits of peak brightness, P3 wide color, True Tone, and ProMotion… the XDR Liquid Retina display looks incredible.

Features 12.9–inch Liquid Retina XDR display (2732x2048 pixels), Apple M1 chip (8–core CPU, 8–core GPU), 8GB of memory (128GB, 256GB and 512GB)/16GB of memory (1TB and 2TB), up to 2TB of storage, Pro camera system with 12MP Wide and 10MP Ultra Wide lenses, 12MP True Depth camera, Wi–Fi 6 (aka 802.11ax), Bluetooth 5.0, Face ID, Thunderbolt/USB 4 port, 40.88w/hr battery with up to 10 hours battery life

Big things are happening to Apple’s biggest tablet. The 12.9– inch model on test here now sports the M1 — the same Apple silicon System on Chip (SoC) found on the Mac mini, MacBook Air, 13–inch MacBook Pro, and 24–inch iMac.

The 2021 iPad Pro also includes a much-improved display. Dubbed the Liquid Retina XDR display, it features 10,000 mini LEDs with 2,596 local dimming zones for improved color fidelity and brightness — up to 1,600cd/m2 in fact — and a 1,000,000:1 contrast ratio.

Like its Mac siblings, the 12.9–inch iPad Pro also now comes with a Thunderbolt/USB 4 port connection, enabling you to connect a huge range of peripherals — from Thunderbolt docks and displays to external drives, making it much more flexible.

And the iPad Pro Wi-Fi + Cellular also includes support for 5G, so you can now get even faster connectivity when you’re on the go (conspiracy theorists need not apply). Also onboard are Wi-Fi 6 (aka 802.11ax Wi-Fi) and Bluetooth 5.0, plus a Pro camera system with Wide and Ultra-Wide lenses on the back and a 12MP TrueDepth camera on the front.


Those are the headlines, now let’s delve into the options list. The base $1,099 model includes all of the goodies mentioned above and comes with 128GB of onboard storage, the $1,199 doubles that to 256GB, and the $1,399 version doubles that again to 512GB. Spending $1,799 nets you 1TB of storage space, while the $2,199 version gets 2TB. These two top–tier models also get more memory. While the 128GB, 256GB and 512GB versions get 8GB of unified memory, the 1TB and 2GB models get 16GB. Those are the Wi-Fi-only prices.

Wi-Fi + Cellular models cost even more — expect to pay $1,299 for the 128GB model, $1,399 for the 256GB, $1,599 for the 512GB, $1,999 for the 1TB, and $2,399 for the 2TB. Phew! Oh, and you’ll need an extra $428 to add a second–generation Apple Pencil ($129) and Magic Keyboard ($299).

Apple 11-inch iPad Pro

Apple M1 chip for next-level performance; Stunning 27.96 cm (11-inch) Liquid Retina display with ProMotion, True Tone, and P3 wide color

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