Apple iPad Pro review: Apple’s giant tablet is simply superb but there’s a price to pay
The iPad Pro has just gone on sale on the UK
Apple iPad Pro • From £679
WHAT WE LIKE: Glorious screen • Super-fast processor • Great multitasking options • Apple Pencil works well
WE DON'T LIKE: High price • Not a laptop replacement • Nowhere to store the Apple Pencil
Apple’s next big thing is finally here and if you want the ultimate iPad this is definitely it.
The iPad Pro is Apple’s biggest ever tablet and, with a mighty 12.9inch display, everything about this machine is super-sized.
But what's this giant tablet really like to have crammed in your bag every day?
Express.co.uk has taken the iPad Pro for a spin and here's our ultimate verdict.
With the keyboard attached the iPad feels like laptop
When you first set eyes on this mega tablet you'll probably ask the question “what's the point?”
The iPad Pro is the same size as a laptop, but Apple is adamant it won't replace your portable computer.
This thing is made for people who want a big tablet and with iPad sales in decline it may seem like a strange decision by the US tech giant.
However, start using the iPad Pro and you soon begin to understand the concept.
With a truly stunning screen and ultra-fast processor, the iPad Pro is the best tablet Apple has ever made and the 12.9inch display allows you to multitask like never before.
The Pro has double the screen real estate of the iPad Air allowing you to split it in half without it affecting your experience.
This means you can type emails or documents on one side whilst displaying the internet, your diary or even a movie on the other.
It's a great iOS 9 feature, that's available on other tablets, but it works so much better on the iPad Pro.
The iPad Pro features the best ever display on an Apple iOS device
All of your content appears on Apple's best ever iOS display and, with a resolution of 5.6 million pixels, this screen is a thing of absolute beauty.
Colours are crisp, bright and the detail you’ll witness on the screen is astonishingly good.
Sadly, there's no iPhone-style 3D Touch, which will no doubt hit the iPad range later next year.
One criticism we do have of this giant screen is that not all apps have been optimised for it.
Twitter is a good example, as when you open the app you get huge areas of dead space around the display.
This niggle will no doubt be ironed out as more developers upgrade their software but for now it’s an annoyance.
As you'd expect from an iPad, the Pro’s touch screen is also super responsive and it does everything you ask of it with effortless precision.
Helping it achieve this smooth running is Apple’s A9X chip, which brings laptop power to this handheld device.
Incredibly, the iPad Pro offers double the performance of the current iPad Air 2 and is a staggering 360 times faster than the original iPad.
With this power house squeezed inside you'll have no problems editing movies, playing console-style games or re-touching your latest holiday snaps.
The iPad Pro will even edit the giant 4K movie files you shoot on your iPhone without breaking into a sweat.
The iPad Pro weighs the same as the original iPad
The 12.9-inch screen dwarfs the iPad Air
For entertainment the new iPad also features four market-leading stereo speakers which are some of the best we've ever heard on a tablet.
The mini boom boxes don't just sound superb but are also highly intelligent – automatically recognising whether the device is in portrait or landscape mode and changing the sound accordingly.
It’s rare we mention tablet speakers, but Apple’s design team have done a stunning job squeezing such quality sound into the iPad Pro’s slim 6.9mm thin shell.
Other extras include Apple’s fast fingerprint scanner and a decent pair of cameras.
Another new feature on the iPad Pro are the bonus accessories.
The Apple Pencil and Smart Keyboard have both been designed to work exclusively with the tablet and help to make this beast even better.
If there’s a budding artist inside you, the Apple Pencil allows you to draw and sketch on the glorious display with precision.
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The Pencil works really well and can even gauge how you are holding it for different brush strokes and angles.
There are a couple of niggles with the pencil and perhaps the biggest is where you store it.
Unlike some rival devices there’s no magnet, loop or storage slot for the pencil and we can see this £80 accessories easily vanishing down the side of the sofa.
It’s also a shame it doesn’t feature an eraser on the opposite end to the nib.
Using the Apple Pencil feels incredibly intuitive and we found ourselves wanting to rub out content like a traditional pencil.
Microsoft’s new Surface Pro 4 has this feature and we’re surprised Apple didn’t think it was worthy of including.
Apple's Pencil offers a great way to interact with the tablet
Meanwhile the Smart Keyboard instantly brings laptop functionality to the tablet and is easily connected via the new smart connection on the side of tablet.
We’re waiting to test Apple's Smart Keyboard properly but have instead been using LogiTech's £109 keyboard case.
One advantage this accessory has over Apple’s version is a backlit keyboard which gives the tablet a MacBook feel.
With a solid design it also gives the iPad Pro a MacBook weight and adds a fair amount of bulk to the sleek 713g tablet, plus powering the glowing keys will suck some juice from the iPad's usual 10-hour battery life.
Sadly, this case doesn't allow you to pick different viewing angles and it's design leaves a little to be desired – but it does offer a solid platform for typing your next novel.
• We'll update this article once we've tested Apple's official keyboard.
The iPad Pro's huge screen offers great multitasking options
The iPad Pro features a 12.9inch display
If you want a big tablet it's very hard to find fault with the iPad Pro.
It looks stunning, has a fabulous screen, is powerful and allows you to multitask like never before.
The device also has some market-leading speakers and is reasonably light for such a big lump of tech.
And Apple’s Pencil and keyboard accessories make this device a lot more than a basic tablet.
Sadly, there is one problem we can’t overlook on the iPad Pro and that’s its price.
The basic model will set you back a hefty £679, whilst the top-end machine has an eye-watering £899 price tag and that doesn't include the £80 Pencil or £139 Smart Keyboard.
This price might be justified if the Pro could replace your laptop, but by Apple's own admission, it won’t.
However, if you have the cash in the bank and want the best tablet money can buy, the iPad Pro is it.
It’s fast, feature-packed and is the proof that bigger really is better.