iPad Pro 2024 vs iPad Pro 2022: Biggest expected upgrades

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Apple hasn’t officially announced the iPad Pro 2024 but rumors suggest the tablet could launch just before the company’s WWDC 2024 event. If true, it would replace the iPad Pro 2022 since Apple didn’t release any new iPads in 2023. Given some of the rumors we’ve heard in recent months, the next iPad Pro will potentially offer a handful of welcome (and long- awaited) upgrades over its predecessors.

We won’t know for certain what has changed between the iPad Pro 2022 and the iPad Pro 2024 until the latter arrives, but we’ve been hearing about a brand-new OLED display, faster M3 chip and other upgrades. If what we’ve heard is true, the rumored tablet could find a spot on our best iPads and best tablets lists. Here’s a breakdown of all the rumored upgrades coming to the new iPad Pro.

OLED panel

Will an OLED-equipped iPad Pro justify a price hike? (Image credit: Tom’s Guide)

Rumors have long suggested that Apple would upgrade the iPad Pro with an OLED display. If this happens, it would be a significant improvement over the current mini-LED panel in the 12.9-inch iPad Pro. According to Bloomberg reporter and Apple tipster Mark Gurman, the panel should be “crisper and brighter” and “reproduce colors more accurately.”

On the topic of displays, Gurman has also said the 12.9-inch iPad Pro could get bumped up to a 13-inch screen. However, the 11-inch model would not receive a size upgrade. That’s something display analyst Ross Young has also claimed. At least the smaller iPad Pro would still receive an OLED panel.

Since OLED screens are inherently thin, discussions have suggested that the iPad Pro will be lighter. Currently, the 11-inch iPad Pro can weigh a little over 1 pound while the 12.9-inch iPad Pro can weigh as much as 1.5 pounds. We can’t say how much lighter the rumored iPad Pros could be, but any weight loss would be welcome.

Landscape front camera

(Image credit: Tom’s Guide)

The iPad Pro 2024 could take a design cue from the iPad 10 in the form of a landscape-oriented camera on the front of the tablet. Apple leaker Instant Digital (via MacRumors) posted on the Chinese social media platform Weibo posted an image of what the rumored iPad Pro could look like. If the image in question is legit, Apple plans to move the entire TrueDepth camera array to the right of the tablet. The microphone would remain on the top but newly centered.

We first heard about this rumored upgrade back in January 2024 after the iPadOS 17.4 beta code hinted that the iPad Pro’s Face ID sensors were being relocated from the top of the device when held in portrait, and to the top when held in landscape. “During ‌Make ID‌ setup, ‌iPad‌ needs to be in landscape with the camera at the top of the screen,” the code read. Instant Digital claimed the rumored iPad Air 6 would also get a repositioned front camera.

iPads have historically had the front camera positioned on the short side of the display. However, tablet usage has evolved and now most people tend to use slates in landscape mode instead of portrait. Other tablets, such as the best Android tablets, have shifted their cameras to reflect this. Given how the iPad 10 now has its front camera up top in portrait mode, it wouldn’t be surprising if the iPad Pro followed suit.

Apple M3 chip

The new iPad Pro 2022 is identical to its predecessor in terms of design. (Image credit: Tom’s Guide)

Given how the iPad Pro 2022 has an Apple M2 chip, its successor is expected to pack an Apple M3 processor. If true, it would make the iPad Pro the most powerful iPad ever — and potentially leave all competing tablets in the proverbial dust performance-wise.

The M3 chip uses TSMC’s 3nm process, which brings big improvements in efficiency and speed — as we’ve seen in the MacBook Pro 14-inch M3, MacBook Air 13-inch M3 and MacBook Air 15-inch M3. If the iPad Pro M3 has the same performance gains we saw between M2 and M3 in MacBooks, then it might not be a radical advancement. However, if you’re using an M1-powered iPad or older, then the performance boost should be significant.

I initially believed packing M-series chips into iPads was overkill since most people use the devices for web browsing, watching videos and light work. However, if you’re a video or photo editor who uses an iPad to make a living, then the performance gains M3 provides could greatly benefit you.

Magic Keyboard upgrade

iPad Pro 2022
(Image credit: Tom’s Guide)

If you use an iPad Pro for work, then you might own an Apple Magic Keyboard — which is one of the most useful peripherals for Apple’s large tablet. The Magic Keyboard hasn’t received a major update in a while, but if rumors are true, it’s about to receive a few.

According to Gurman, Apple is revamping the Magic Keyboard to make “the iPad Pro look even more like a laptop than the current setup.” In that same vein, the peripheral will also sport a “larger trackpad.” Gurman also says the Magic Keyboard could also receive an aluminum finish that would give it the aesthetic of Apple’s laptops. If true, this would be another step closer to realizing the dream of making the iPad Pro a laptop replacement — at least visually.

Lastly, rumors have suggested the iPad Pro 2024 would support the equally rumored Apple Pencil 3. The Apple Pencil 2 is arguably the best stylus out there (at least in my humble opinion), so it would be interesting to see what improvements Apple could introduce . The Apple Pencil 3 could also work with the Vision Pro headset.

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Tags: iPad Pro iPad Pro Biggest expected upgrades

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