Yes, you read that right, I’m calling the 7th generation iPad which Apple launched yesterday, a rebranded 2017 iPad Pro, but that’s not a bad thing at all considering the impressive Rs 29,900 price for it in India. Now technically, this is not exactly an iPad Pro from 2 years ago, but it is so close but all positive things here which make this a great general-purpose computer for the masses.
- The iPad Pro in 2017 had a “pro-motion” display and it had a 10.5-inch screen size. The 7th gen iPad now gets a big bump in the screen size which bringing it closer to the 10.5-inch screen size with a 10.2-inch panel but again there is no pro-motion which was a big deal, but for most people, this isn’t a feature they will notice.
- In 2017, the iPad Pro came with the A10x processor. The iPad now has the A10 Bionic processor but the fact that it has a smaller screen driving fewer pixels and it doesn’t have the high refresh rate panel, the performance should be equalled. And the performance is going to be very good with iPad OS 13 considering I’ve been running it on a 2017 iPad Pro.
- Apple Pencil support now comes to the masses which makes this kind of cool. Though this is still the first-generation Apple Pencil, any kind of support is very good. Especially, if you’re a creator, then the Pencil support makes the iPad a very powerful creative tool something which most Chromebooks and Windows 10 machines at a similar price can’t compete with.
- Apple has also added support for the smart connector which makes it compatible with accessories like the smart keyboard; a crucial feature for people who want to use it as a general-purpose computer for drafting documents, browsing the web, watching movies and listening to music.
- iPad OS is what makes this iPad so wonderful compared to Android tablets, Windows notebooks and Chromebooks. iPad OS adds a new Safari browser which gives desktop-class performance allowing the use of web apps like Google Docs and a download manager. The new Files app operates like a traditional file system coupled with the fact that there the OS now supports USB drives and a bunch of accessories. It also adds mouse support in accessibility settings and new multi-tasking abilities.
- The screen of the iPad is also brighter than before with a retina plus resolution which makes this a fantastic screen for reading text, creating documents, playing games, and whatnot. Its screen will be a level above anything that a Windows notebook or a Chromebook can offer the price of the iPad.
- Apple’s services push also works in favour of the iPad. Apple’s App Store is already a playground for millions of apps tuned for the iPad, but now you get cool exclusive services like Apple Arcade with more 100 exclusive games for just Rs 99 per month and Apple TV+ starting with 5 high profile original shows for the same amount, but free for the first year of purchase.
Two and a half years ago, this was the argument for an expensive iPad Pro, that you could use it as a full computer. But even then because of the limitations of iOS, you couldn’t achieve what you can with this Rs 29,900 iPad in its seventh generation.
This is a classic example of Apple smartly repackaging its older hardware which was cutting edge at one time to the masses at a very affordable price.