The home button is out and Face ID is in on Apple's new premium tablets, available in 11- and 12.9-inch sizes.
As expected, Apple revamped and expanded its iPad Pro lineup at Tuesday's event in Brooklyn. The premium tablets now come in three sizes: a brand-new 11-inch model that starts at $799 (£769, AU$1,229); a redesigned 12.9-inch version that now starts at $999 (£969, AU$1,529); and the 10.5-inch model from 2017 that remains priced at $649 (£619, AU$979).
The new iPad Pros can be ordered today and will ship on Nov. 7.
The rumors that circulated prior to today's event were remarkably accurate. The two models announced today have a new design featuring rounded corners, thinner bezels and a slightly slimmer profile. The home button is gone, replaced by Apple's Face ID authentication technology, and the Lightning port and headphone jack are out, replaced by USB-C.
Inside, the new iPad Pros are packing considerably more power, driven by Apple's new eight-core A12X Bionic processor that supports its Neural Engine technology, also found on late-model iPhones. Storage capacity now tops out at 1TB. The Apple Pencil stylus has also been updated, and now features wireless charging.
With this redesign, Apple has doubled down on the iPad Pro's strengths, equipping creatives with tools backed by serious processing power, and ramping up its capabilities for AR and gaming.
Here's everything we know:
Apple also announced a new MacBook Air, which starts at $1,199 (£1,199, AU$1,849). That means that the new 12.9-inch iPad Pro now costs as much as the previous-generation $999 MacBook Air, reinforcing the company's desire to position its premium tablet as a true laptop replacement. That noted, Apple's magnetically attachable Smart Keyboard costs extra -- the 11-inch model is $179 (£179, AU$269) and the 12.9-inch version is $199 (£199, AU$299). Maxed-out configurations cost $1,899 -- and that's before adding accessories.
Apple hopes the revamped iPad Pro will be better positioned to compete with contemporary tablets like Microsoft's Surface Pro 6, which starts at $899, and Google's Pixel Slate, which starts at $599. But it's also important for Apple to re-establish the Pro as a higher-end device after adding Pencil support and a faster processor to its entry-level iPad back in March.
Since then, the $329 iPad offered many of the features that were once exclusive to the considerably more expensive 10.5-inch Pro and 12.9-inch Pro models, which started at $649 and $799, respectively, coming in to today's event. With the new design and features announced today, Apple has restored some of the premium that separates the basic iPad from the Pro lineup.
Originally published 7:46 a.m. PT, and updated frequently thereafter with additional information and new links.
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