iPad Pro I'm a big iPad fan but isn't the Surface Pro more of a "pro" than the new iPads?

Kendo

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Original poster
Apr 4, 2011
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I refuse to buy a Surface simply because I'm locked into the Apple ecosystem but I played around with the new Pro models in the Apple Store today and functionally they look, act, and smell like all the other iPads, even the 9.7" version. Yes they are much more premium feeling but looking at a $300 9.7" iPad and an $800 11" Pro, they don't really seem to offer that much more of a user experience for the price. Am I crazy here?
 

DaveOP

macrumors 68000
May 29, 2011
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Portland, OR
Nope you’re not. Apple are yet to offer a compelling argument why one should choose an iPad Pro vs a surface pro as a stand alone computing device
My sales guys leave their Surfaces in the car in favor of their iPads. Cellular + our apps are much more useful than a full blown computer. Each device has their own use case and customer base.
 

840quadra

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Staff member
Feb 1, 2005
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Get a Surface pro, the choice is simple since it is yours to make.

Making a transition can be painful but there are many great guides out there as to how to migrate some or all services over to other devices. You can still access Apple Music, iTunes Match, calendars, email, photos, etc via web accessible features such as iCloud.com, or Native (Apple) applications installed on the Surface.
 

Knowimagination

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Apr 6, 2010
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I have owned and used a surface and now have an 11” pro I find the iPad much more useful and a better overall experience for all the things that I use it for.

The surface for me ultimately was just a laptop with a removable keyboard it isn’t really a tablet or at least I didn’t find any enjoyment trying to use it in tablet mode.
 

TheColtr

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Feb 1, 2014
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California
Surface is nowhere near a pro level device for me. I have the newest iPad Pro and surface pro. Cellular is huge for me, being able to take my iPad anywhere without the worry of tethering and whatnot is fantastic. Yeah surface has cellular model but they come out like 6 months later. Also battery life. With the iPad I know I’ll habe the battery I need to get me through the day. And yeah my iPad is usually around 10 percent by the time I plug it in at night and that’s with about 8 hours of screen on time.
 

bluespark

macrumors 68000
Jul 11, 2009
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So when you say Pro you mean laptop.
This sums up the entire debate. Microsoft is pushing a traditional, document-oriented version of "pro." There's nothing wrong with that, and many pros need exactly that. For those people, the iPad isn't truly "pro" because, for example, it lacks a traditional file system.

On the other hand, if you're a photographer or designer, you'll probably find the iPad Pro to be far more of a professional-level tool. If your work is app-based and doesn't require a mouse, the iPad Pro is more likely to be your machine. It just depends.

OP, what are you looking for? What does "pro" mean for your own work? That should be the starting point, not what "ecosystem" you believe you are in.
 

JP913

macrumors regular
Sep 18, 2014
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Orlando
I owned a Surface Pro, a Wacom MobileStudio, and now two iPad Pros.

To me, the iPad is miles ahead of what any of Microsoft or Wacom can offer.

The only difference is a "full OS," but I'd rather be hampered in iOS than deal with Windows and tablets that are heavier and have significantly less battery life.

BUT, that said, everyone's needs are different. Maybe a full OS is what you need. If so, then you know where to go.
 

JayMysterio

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Apr 24, 2010
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Rock Ridge, California
I enjoyed my Surface Pro. But it eventually comes down to which set of quirks grind your gears more. The Surface allows for the use of real programs instead of apps trying to pass for full programs. So instead of buying a yearly subscription to Clip Art Studio on iPad, I can just buy the program itself once on a Surface and have the true experience. You don't have to wait for Adobe's suite to get fully added to iPad, you can get them now on a Surface. I actually liked the tablet appearance with info ( news, weather, etc ) directly on the screen at a glance. What I didn't care for? The painfully long updates, especially when M$ initially didn't want to allow the user to decide when to update. You'd be doing something, and Windows would decide NOW is when it wants to update, what you're doing is no longer important. I never had that level of intrusion on IOS.

So it's just a trade off you can learn to live with if you want to badly enough. Getting full programs, being able to run Steam & some games is no joke, and is wonderful. It ultimately falls on what you can stand from either service.

For me, it was something as small as the M$ pen on the surface drove me nuts. I didn't care for the cursor below the glass & trailing. I just like that the latency on Apple pencil is so low & the iPad gives the appearance of drawing on the glass/tablet itself to me.
 
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JP913

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Sep 18, 2014
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The Surface allows for the use of real programs instead of apps trying to pass for full programs. So instead of buying a yearly subscription to Clip Art Studio on iPad, I can just buy the program itself once on a Surface and have the true experience. You don't have to wait for Adobe's suite to get fully added to iPad, you can get them now on a Surface.
Clip Studio Paint on the iPad IS a true experience, don't sell it short. The subscription is a pain in the butt, but EX is $220 for the Mac version, and just $72 a year for the iOS version. If you use the iOS version for 3 years, it's actually $4 less than the Mac version (plus, the iOS version is free for 6 months!)

Also, I've completely switched from "real programs" (like Photoshop and Clip Studio) to one of those "apps trying to pass for full programs" - Procreate.

In my opinion, there isn't a better drawing program, iOS, OS or otherwise, that's better. Procreate on the iPad should be making Wacom shake in their boots.

The ONLY drawback with Procreate (and this is an iOS problem more than a Procreate problem) is the lack of fonts / font support. If I could load up my iPad with my own fonts, then I would be nearly ready to ditch my iMac.
 

rowspaxe

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Jan 29, 2010
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For me, it was something as small as the M$ pen on the surface drove me nuts. I didn't care for the cursor below the glass & trailing. I just like that the latency on Apple pencil is so low & the iPad gives the appearance of drawing on the glass/tablet itself to me.
Surface has had bonded glass for 3 years, but whatever...
 

JayMysterio

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Apr 24, 2010
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Clip Studio Paint on the iPad IS a true experience, don't sell it short. The subscription is a pain in the butt, but EX is $220 for the Mac version, and just $72 a year for the iOS version. If you use the iOS version for 3 years, it's actually $4 less than the Mac version (plus, the iOS version is free for 6 months!)

Also, I've completely switched from "real programs" (like Photoshop and Clip Studio) to one of those "apps trying to pass for full programs" - Procreate.

In my opinion, there isn't a better drawing program, iOS, OS or otherwise, that's better. Procreate on the iPad should be making Wacom shake in their boots.

The ONLY drawback with Procreate (and this is an iOS problem more than a Procreate problem) is the lack of fonts / font support. If I could load up my iPad with my own fonts, then I would be nearly ready to ditch my iMac.
I mainly use Procreate now. Now that they've added the shape tool, it's so much easier to make panels.

I've always purchased Clip Studio on Mac when it goes on sale annually so I've never paid over $80 for. While this year the price for IOS version was dropped to $24 from all the outcry over the original price. I am still not sure if I will resub when my year is up and Smith Micro tries again with that price. I'm thinking Luna Display drawing on the original program with my iPad connected to the Macbook Pro.

Wacom should be keeping a very close eye on anything iPad & IOS related. So many have been shut out because of their expensive equipment that a market of wannabes developed. Now with the likes of Procreate and programs making tablet versions, the need for external tablets is quickly dwindling away.
 

Kate.

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Aug 30, 2009
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The ONLY drawback with Procreate (and this is an iOS problem more than a Procreate problem) is the lack of fonts / font support. If I could load up my iPad with my own fonts, then I would be nearly ready to ditch my iMac.
Savage has promised text support in the next update. There are other iOS apps like Over that allow you to add custom support. Don't see why Procreate couldn't do the same.
 

JayMysterio

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Apr 24, 2010
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Surface has had bonded glass for 3 years, but whatever...
That maybe true, but the issue is the pencil's cursor/reticle to it's point difference. There is no seeming gap of any sort on the iPad. You drag the pencil, your line directly follows. On the surface, the cursor, then the line follows. Many learn to adapt just as they've adapted to tablets on a table & looking up at monitor. Those are two things I never cared for, and now don't need to with the iPad Pro.
 
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rowspaxe

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Jan 29, 2010
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The ONLY drawback with Procreate (and this is an iOS problem more than a Procreate problem) is the lack of fonts / font support. If I could load up my iPad with my own fonts, then I would be nearly ready to ditch my iMac.
To me the problem with procreate is bringing things back to windows world. Fortunately, sketchbook
is set up to save all saved files to a Sketchbook folder an icloud drive. The latency is very good.
No exporting and fishing around. I do many roughs on the ipad pro and I like to exchange files
between the ipad and the desktop.
 
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JP913

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Sep 18, 2014
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Orlando
That maybe true, but the issue is the pencil's cursor/reticle to it's point difference. There is no seeming gap of any sort on the iPad. You drag the pencil, your line directly follows. On the surface, the cursor, then the line follows. Many learn to adapt just as they've adapted to tablets on a table & looking up at monitor. Those are two things I never cared for, and now don't need to with the iPad Pro.
You're talking about Parallaxing, and yes, there's virtually none of that on the iPad Pro. The Pencil tip on the glass IS your line.

I tried out a Surface Pro at the Microsoft store, and it just felt...cheap. The pen is no good. It felt sluggish, like I was drawing on rubber or something.

I own a Cintiq 22HD, and I barely use it anymore. It's a glorified second monitor right now. I do all my drawing on the iPad, and really haven't looked back at the Cintiq.
 

rowspaxe

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Jan 29, 2010
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I will continue to say there is nothing pro about ipads.....and I own one.
If you do art--its very pro. The 4:3 (ish) aspect ratio means you have almost as much
prime drawing area on a 12.9 as 15.6 16:9. The pen tech is great. I don't finish
projects on the ipad so software is not an issue
 

rowspaxe

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Jan 29, 2010
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I tried out a Surface Pro at the Microsoft store, and it just felt...cheap. The pen is no good. It felt sluggish, like I was drawing on rubber or something.
Different strokes for different folks. I like the pencil but it drawback is a plastic skatey feel. I really
like the feel of surfcae pen. Wacom new pro pen 2--imo--is the best.
 
Last edited:

840quadra

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Feb 1, 2005
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Twin Cities Minnesota
I will continue to say there is nothing pro about ipads.....and I own one.
Well Pro is a subjective term. I agree there could be quite a bit more functionality added to iPad iOS, however I have been amazed how quickly and efficiently the iPad Pro can handle my editorial, photo, and video work.

Biggest gripe with iPad though, APPLE ENABLE EXTERNAL storage. The iPads are screamers for editing video content, but locking out attached storage (especially via USB-c) remains a frustrating and deliberate firewall. It’s great they have a file system tool, however ‘pros’ sometimes work away from cloud served internet access.
 

JP913

macrumors regular
Sep 18, 2014
139
324
Orlando
Different strokes for different folks. I lke the pencil but it drawback is a plastic skatey feel. I really
like the feel of surfcae pen. Wacom new pro pen 2--imo--is the best.
I use the slim Wacom Pen, so the Pro Pen 2 is too big for me (makes my hand cramp up)

I've tried the Paperlike screen protector, which added some tooth to the screen, but I didn't actually like that as much as just the plain ol' glass.

What you prefer to make art on and with, just like the art itself, is subjective!
 

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