iPad Air 2 vs iPad Pro 9.7" with iOS 10

ccard3dev

macrumors regular
Original poster
Nov 6, 2013
138
23
Michigan, US
I've been considering either the iPad Air 2 or the new iPad Pro, to compliment my 15" MacBook Pro for mostly schoolwork and other tasks that a laptop isn't necessary for. However, I've decided to wait until after WWDC to make my purchase, partly in waiting for a good sale on either tablet. I'm also interested in seeing what features iOS 10 will bring to iPad, and if those features will be universal to all iPads or if they will introduce "Pro-only" features (maybe with file management, homescreen, or multitasking) to differentiate the higher end devices.

Anyone else waiting to see what iOS 10 has to offer before buying? Also thoughts on if Apple will bring certain advanced features to only the Pro models?
 

rui no onna

macrumors 604
Oct 25, 2013
6,799
3,089
I thought the Pencil was already a Pro-only feature?

While I'm getting the iPad Pro 9.7", I don't want Apple to include Pro-only software features in iOS 10 unless there's something specifically lacking in older hardware that makes the Pro necessary.
 
  • Like
Reactions: Night Spring

TheRealAlex

macrumors 68000
Sep 2, 2015
1,906
1,050
I've been considering either the iPad Air 2 or the new iPad Pro, to compliment my 15" MacBook Pro for mostly schoolwork and other tasks that a laptop isn't necessary for. However, I've decided to wait until after WWDC to make my purchase, partly in waiting for a good sale on either tablet. I'm also interested in seeing what features iOS 10 will bring to iPad, and if those features will be universal to all iPads or if they will introduce "Pro-only" features (maybe with file management, homescreen, or multitasking) to differentiate the higher end devices.

Anyone else waiting to see what iOS 10 has to offer before buying? Also thoughts on if Apple will bring certain advanced features to only the Pro models?
iOS 10 Features Exclusively to the iPad Pro Line. Hmmm My guess is more Advanced Multitasking. Maybe an A9X Xbox class game. WWDC we will finally start to see Apps taking full advantage of the A9 class CPU's
 

Wackery

macrumors 6502a
Feb 1, 2015
721
705
What would be a pro only feature that the air 2 couldn't do? Similar power, same ram... Only pro features would have to do with the pen, keyboard and the speakers.
it would be artificially limiting updates to the air 2, that would validate my purchase of the pro and it's something apple would do
 
  • Like
Reactions: d5aqoëp and Booji

Cakefish

macrumors 6502a
Oct 14, 2015
508
303
File management isn't a 'Pro' level feature, it's a very basic fundamental that iOS has been sorely lacking since the beginning of time. Low end Android phones have file managers so definitely no hardware-related excuse on that one. I will be very angry if Apple arbitrarily keeps such a basic function from the Air 2.

Split-screen multitasking is already present on iOS 9.x and any refinements that Apple makes to this feature I don't see being an exclusive to the Pro tablets only... both Pro 9.7" and Air 2 have 2GB RAM. Again, no hardware excuses here. It's a feature that still needs a little polish, can't see Apple leaving it unpolished on the Air 2.
 
  • Like
Reactions: d5aqoëp

username:

macrumors 6502a
Dec 16, 2013
705
363
Interesting question... I hope the pencil stays positioned as an art tool and doesn't gain any productivity features built into the software. I hope Apple steer well clear of doing an S pen style thing because I don't want to have to "need" an extra tool to use the iPad.

Seriously though, I hope Apple create a retro Digimon app and people with iPad pros and stick their smart connectors together and have Digimon battles. That would be killer pro feature.
 

sracer

macrumors G3
Apr 9, 2010
8,357
8,718
Prescott Valley, AZ
I've been considering either the iPad Air 2 or the new iPad Pro, to compliment my 15" MacBook Pro for mostly schoolwork and other tasks that a laptop isn't necessary for. However, I've decided to wait until after WWDC to make my purchase, partly in waiting for a good sale on either tablet. I'm also interested in seeing what features iOS 10 will bring to iPad, and if those features will be universal to all iPads or if they will introduce "Pro-only" features (maybe with file management, homescreen, or multitasking) to differentiate the higher end devices.

Anyone else waiting to see what iOS 10 has to offer before buying? Also thoughts on if Apple will bring certain advanced features to only the Pro models?
Wise move to wait for WWDC before committing to the Air 2 or 9.7 Pro.

But I think that you may find that any new features introduced in iOS 10 might cause you to consider the 12.9 Pro. Hardware-wise the differentiating factor between the Air 2 and 9.7 Pro are the smart connector, support for the Pencil, and faster processor. I can't see any feature added to iOS 10 that would be exclusive to the Pro (in that it requires Pro-specific hardware). 2GB of RAM in the 9.7 Pro ensure that there will not be any exclusive features for that Pro (vs. what is available for the Air 2)

All that to say, IF there will be any Pro-exclusive features in iOS 10, it will be more likely exclusive to the 12.9 Pro... partly because of the 4GB RAM, partly because of the screen size (that implies a larger area for an optional smart keyboard that includes a trackpad. just sayin' ;) )
 

ColdShadow

macrumors 65816
Sep 25, 2013
1,286
1,265
choosing between Air 2 vs Pro 9.7 has to be one of the most difficult decisions.

the price can be close depending where you buy them.
I myself am having a very hard time between 64GB Air 2 vs base 32 GB Pro.
(To make things more complex add 64 GB Mini 4 to the mix).

the main reasons why its such a difficult choice imo are:

-Pencil is not supplied with Pro (it really should have been included).
-unlike original Pro with 4GB Ram, the 9.7 Pro has 2GB Ram just like Air 2
-Pro starts with 32GB and there is no 64 GB whereas Air 2 starts with (insufficient 16GB) and there is no 32GB!
-the performance lead of Pro over Air 2 in real life appears to be very minimal

I really don't see Apple introducing any Pro only feature that cannot be implemented on Air 2,there could be some for the original Pro because of 4GB Ram but then doing that would make 9.7 Pro look so inferior and not even worthy for the Pro name.

I think they should have made 9.7 Pro with 4GB RAM just like the original Pro and included the pencil with both.
With current setup,Pro 9.7 is more like Air 3.
 

d5aqoëp

macrumors 65816
Feb 9, 2016
1,050
1,412
Apple will manage to render Air 2 useless by adjusting the performance in such a way that Pro would look faster side by side in iOS 10.

We will see loads of complaints like "Air 2 stuttering/lagging on iOS 10" Right now, 1 layer of translucency does not bog down Air 2. So Apple can introduce multiple layers.

I do recommend Air 2 today for what it is now and not for what it may become on iOS 10 release date. My speculations are based on past experiences with each iOS update.

Air 2 felt ridiculously overpowered on iOS 8. Now on iOS 9, it feels "just adequate". No prizes for what it will feel like on iOS 10.
 
  • Like
Reactions: Wackery

Channan

macrumors 68030
Mar 7, 2012
2,592
2,107
New Orleans
What would be a pro only feature that the air 2 couldn't do? Similar power, same ram... Only pro features would have to do with the pen, keyboard and the speakers.
They don't care if the Air 2 is capable of the same features or not as long as their Pro gets something that other iPads don't get so they feel better about themselves.
 

sethlution

macrumors regular
Dec 13, 2011
202
48
For those of you saying, the iPad Pro (9.7) won't get any exclusive features just because it has the same RAM as the Air 2, you might be forgetting about previous OS updates. Take the iPad 4 and iPad Air for example, which has the same amount of RAM. There are lots of features available on the Air that the 4th gen don't have (slide over, Picture-in-Picture, Night Shift, Safari content blocker,...). I know it sucks cuz when I jailbroke my iPad, those features ran fine without any lag or what so ever. That's why I decided to update to the new Pro. Great device by the way. Super fast compared to the 4.

I'm not saying I want this exclusive thing to happen just because I have the pro, but based on past experiences Apple will likely do it just cuz the pro is newer and faster. It might not happen this year, but I'm willing to bet there will be some exclusive features starting next year.
 

Cakefish

macrumors 6502a
Oct 14, 2015
508
303
For those of you saying, the iPad Pro (9.7) won't get any exclusive features just because it has the same RAM as the Air 2, you might be forgetting about previous OS updates. Take the iPad 4 and iPad Air for example, which has the same amount of RAM. There are lots of features available on the Air that the 4th gen don't have (slide over, Picture-in-Picture, Night Shift, Safari content blocker,...). I know it sucks cuz when I jailbroke my iPad, those features ran fine without any lag or what so ever. That's why I decided to update to the new Pro. Great device by the way. Super fast compared to the 4.

I'm not saying I want this exclusive thing to happen just because I have the pro, but based on past experiences Apple will likely do it just cuz the pro is newer and faster. It might not happen this year, but I'm willing to bet there will be some exclusive features starting next year.
There's another reason for the discrepancy in features between those models:

iPad 4 has a 32bit CPU
iPad Air has a 64bit CPU

Both the Air 2 and Pro 9.7" have 64bit CPUs.
 

Serban

Suspended
Jan 8, 2013
5,160
920
since the air 2 and pro 9.7" has the same 2 gb ram, there will be no such difference with ios10
 
  • Like
Reactions: Math889