2020 iPad Pro Reviews: Minor Upgrade Today Paves Way for New AR Capabilities in Future

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The first reviews of the new iPad Pro have hit the web and we've rounded them up below.

Given that trackpad support is coming to all modern iPad models with iPadOS 13.4, set to be released later today, the actual hardware changes to the 2020 iPad Pro are rather minor. Reviews confirm that the device's new A12Z Bionic chip has very similar CPU performance as the previous A12X chip, and beyond that, the only additions are an Ultra Wide camera, LiDAR scanner, and better sounding microphones.


Moreover, the LiDAR scanner is more about the future than today. The Verge's Dieter Bohn noted that the sensor "improves some current apps for free, but there aren't any third-party apps that take full advantage of it yet."

"As I used the iPad Pro this week, I kept coming back to that LIDAR sensor," said Bohn. "It's a powerful and interesting sensor and Apple's total control over software and hardware means that it 'just works' to improve existing apps. But as powerful as it is, I'm not super sure a lot of users will be able to take advantage of it -- it's an extra thing they may not even use."


There are some benefits to the LiDAR scanner today. For example, all existing ARKit apps will now have instant AR placement, improved motion capture, and people occlusion, while the Measure app can more quickly calculate someone's height.

Apple has been heavily invested in augmented reality for years, and with rumors suggesting that the company is working on an augmented reality headset, the LiDAR scanner will likely have much more significance in the years to come.

As for the A12Z Bionic chip, Apple told WIRED's Lauren Goode that it has enhanced thermal architecture, meaning that it should heat up less when pushed to the limit. And while the A12Z does not move the needle with CPU performance, it does have an eight-core GPU -- up from seven in the 2018 iPad Pro -- for a modest boost in graphics performance.

The new Ultra Wide camera is mostly what you would expect based on the iPhone 11 Pro, enabling 0.5x zoom for those who take photos with an iPad.

2020 iPad Pro Reviews

We've also rounded up 2020 iPad Pro unboxing videos here.

Article Link: 2020 iPad Pro Reviews: Minor Upgrade Today Paves Way for New AR Capabilities in Future
 

haruhiko

macrumors 603
Sep 29, 2009
5,082
2,728
Paves the way by using your money. :)

It’s probably one of the most underwhelming upgrade Apple has had in recent years.
Don’t get me wrong the 2018 iPad Pro was so far ahead of its time that not many ones demand even higher speed. But still... I’m going to skip this generation. Probably considering the Magic Keyboard when it hits the shelves (?) later.
- - Post merged: - -

Really impressed with how far the iPad has come in just over a decade. Gone are the days of a giant iTouch and now a solid product in its own right
Am I seeing the word iTouch in 2020? 😱😱😱
 
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Ghost31

macrumors 68030
Jun 9, 2015
2,704
3,659
just to sum up what’s going on right now: ignore the iPad Pro if you have a 2018. The real upgrade is the magic keyboard and it’s not even out yet.

the lack of a real processor Upgrade is downright bizarre. So bizarre it scratches that part of my brain that thinks something else is going on. a year and a half in technology advances and yet barely a real processor bump? Yeah no. The rumors about the fall iPad update will probably be true. This is iPad 3 all over again.

I’m getting the magic keyboard and sittin happy until the real iPad comes this fall
 

RalfTheDog

macrumors 65816
Feb 23, 2010
1,448
122
Lagrange Point
I look forward to the new camera. It is the one upgrade I have needed. I hope it works better as a document scanner. More so in lower light.
 

nutmac

macrumors 601
Mar 30, 2004
4,427
2,412
Paves the way by using your money. :)

It’s probably one of the most underwhelming upgrade Apple has had in recent years.
Don’t get me wrong the 2018 iPad Pro was so far ahead of its time that not many ones demand even higher speed. But still... I’m going to skip this generation. Probably considering the Magic Keyboard when it hit the shelves (?) later.
- - Post merged: - -


Am I seeing the word iTouch in 2020? 😱😱😱
I agree. While industrial and education use cases exist for using iPad's cameras, most people don't buy iPad for cameras. I had iPad since 2012, and in that 8 years, my household probably used the rear camera about 2 dozen times, if at that. Front camera is occasionally used for video chat.
 

jcshas

macrumors 6502
Oct 8, 2003
399
313
I watched 2 video reviews, and I feel like I’ve already learned everything there is to know about this new iPad. Nothing to see here folks...move along, move along. I have a 2018 iPad Pro and am seriously considering cancelling my order for the 2020 iPad Pro.
 

Lobwedgephil

macrumors 601
Apr 7, 2012
4,933
3,565
This seems like an upgrade just to have one, biggest difference is LIDAR, which you really can't use at all as of now.
 
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tothemoonsands

macrumors regular
Jun 14, 2018
175
271
just to sum up what’s going on right now: ignore the iPad Pro if you have a 2018. The real upgrade is the magic keyboard and it’s not even out yet.

the lack of a real processor Upgrade is downright bizarre. So bizarre it scratches that part of my brain that thinks something else is going on. a year and a half in technology advances and yet barely a real processor bump? Yeah no. The rumors about the fall iPad update will probably be true. This is iPad 3 all over again.

I’m getting the magic keyboard and sittin happy until the real iPad comes this fall
Another way to think about it though is that the processor is still very capable to handle all tasks, and as such, Apple is instead beefing up other components of the device (camera, Lidar, increased min. storage size, WiFi 6, etc)

On paper, the lack of a large processor spec bump is disappointing. In reality though, iPad apps, even the most powerful ones, are a breeze, so then it’s not quite as important to see a bump.

Apple devices, in general, have never been about pure specs. Rather, it’s about the synergy between hardware and software. Software that makes the most out of given hardware.
 

AceFernalld

macrumors 68000
Mar 3, 2008
1,820
1,189
Massachusetts
I watched 2 video reviews, and I feel like I’ve already learned everything there is to know about this new iPad. Nothing to see here folks...move along, move along. I have a 2018 iPad Pro and am seriously considering cancelling my order for the 2020 iPad Pro.
Out of curiosity, why did you order a 2020 in the first place? Processor is almost identical, new keyboard works on the 2018s. Only substantial upgrade is the camera system, but unless you heavily rely on that I personally don't see a reason to throw a grand.
 

roland.g

macrumors 604
Apr 11, 2005
6,584
1,571
Ooh. Augmented Reality. Novel idea. But not what a devices future should focus on. Tim, Craig, do some real work.
 
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CarlJ

macrumors 68040
Feb 23, 2004
3,854
6,056
San Diego, CA, USA
It’s probably one of the most underwhelming upgrade Apple has had in recent years.
To be fair, the crowd here has said the exact same thing about numerous Apple devices that then went on to be bestsellers.

The standard most here use is “how does it compare to the previous model”. But in the real world, most are not upgrading from the previous model - they‘re more likely upgrading from a device that’s 3-5 years old, in which case it’s a huge upgrade.
 

Rogifan

macrumors Core
Nov 14, 2011
21,039
24,730
I don’t get the point of this upgrade especially since the new keyboard works with the previous model. They should have just introduced the new keyboard and software changes and waited to release a new iPad until the fall or spring 2021.
 
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roland.g

macrumors 604
Apr 11, 2005
6,584
1,571
I can't think of anything more useless to the majority of iPad users than this camera. Apple has to give us more than that to cause folks to shell out big bucks...
That $350 Keyboard comes close when you can use a keyboard at a fraction of the cost. Tim money grab. Suckers.
 
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Jim Lahey

macrumors 6502a
Apr 8, 2014
901
1,606
Sunnyvale
Very happy with the Pro I just recently bought. But no one is saying that everyone has to buy every new model. Those who aren’t ready to upgrade won’t, and those who are, will. Never really understood the notion that if a new iDevice doesn’t have a million new features then it’s somehow pointless.
 

TheShadowKnows!

macrumors 6502a
Sep 30, 2014
838
1,667
National Capital Region
Apple's Cook is transferring (ill-proven) trickle-down economics (as it relates to the population at large) to the yearly feature set of Apple's hardware releases -- not just iPad but iPhone, Watch, AirPod, TV, and Mac as well.

Drip ... drip ... drip ... one major yearly drip at the time.
[Worked well for him up to the current malaise -- and now the jury is out on the effect this may have long term.]
 
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johnnylarue

macrumors 6502a
Aug 20, 2013
705
23
I can't think of anything more useless to the majority of iPad users than this camera. Apple has to give us more than that to cause folks to shell out big bucks...
Well, I might have used it once or twice a year... if it had Night Mode. 😡
 
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