At the initial mention of the iPad Pro at the Semptember 2015 Apple Event, we were eager for its launch. The marketing hype around the device, it’s features, elegance and power was indeed a consumerism’s dream. The fact that the IPad Pro boasted a larger than life screen at 12.x inches for an iOS device, the 4 slurping sound bass-boosting speakers, the sensitivity of the glass surface and the internal A9 chip were all features to drool over.
Then, this week, they got the stores. To be frank, we were slightly disappointed. Yes, we are creatives, we love digital publishing, we appreciate aesthetically pleasing digital creations, but were are also business people. Our overall feel for the iPad Pro is that it is a great tool for creatives, but it lacks in many respects for the business world. It is quite over-sized for business people, and quite heavier than the iPad Air. It becomes quite fiddly with the new Smart Keyboard front, and if you are like us who love to take care of their belongings, adding a back cover will make it quite thicker. In addition, the Apple Pencil was not working at first in-store, and theo experience of the Apple Genius at using the Pencil did not help the demo.
Playing with the device for a bit longer, we also came to terms with the few Apps specifically designed at taking advantage of the screen realestate and the power of the chip.
Quite a disappointing fact is that, at least here in Australia, the price tag for the iPad Pro alone starts at almost AU$1,200 for the base 32GB model. It you wanted more space (without the option of a SIM-enabled device), include both Smart Keyboard, back cover and the Apple Pencil, you are looking at over AU$2,400! It is better to but a MacBook for that hefty price tag.
The marketing and hype around the iPad Pro being a somewhat replacement for a notebook in our opinion, is false. It may be suited more towards word processing, sketching, other desktop publishing and perhaps gaming.
Overall, this seems like quite a disappointment considering the above. Makes you wonder if this would have been the case if Steve Jobs and Scott Forstall would have been there. Although it is the first generation of the iPad Pro, similarly to the shortcomings of the Apple TV (we will write a quick thought on that soon as well), the next generations may well improve on the reviews and shortcomings the device has at the moment. Yet, we should not come to expect every first generation of Apple devices to lack things. This is a trend that may very well hurt the company moving forward. As devout Apple supporters, this is the third “disappointment” we have had as consumers in the last few months.