iPad Pro vs Surface Pro 4 price, hardware and software
Apple didn’t just launch devices at yesterday’s event, as iOS 9 was one of the most important parts of the entire presentation. The iPad Pro will be launched with iOS 9 on board, and the two elements of the new release are aimed to work together seamlessly. iOS 9 is made for productivity, according to Apple, and that is reflected in the new features that the OS has. With the iPad Pro, iOS 9 comes with features like running two apps at the same time on the display, easy switching and pairing with devices, responsive on-screen keyboard and much more. iOS 9 could be compared to the step that Samsung took when redesigning TouchWiz when the Galaxy Note 4 was launched last year.
The Surface Pro 4 is going to be the flagship computer for Windows 10, which means the new device will come with a good deal of integration features, new software features for the stylus and probably new apps and services geared towards artists. Windows 10 puts a lot of emphasis on Cortana and we expect the virtual personal assistant to be an important part of the Windows 10 Mobile platform that will be loaded onto the Surface Pro 4 when it is launched. New cloud computing and Azure-related features are also said to be implemented in Windows 10 Mobile, not to mention new Office features, as Microsoft has made it clear over the past few months that cloud is the future.
When it comes to hardware, both the iPad Pro and the Surface Pro 4 will be the best ones in their niches. The iPad Pro uses the Samsung-made Apple A9x chipset coupled with the M9 motion coprocessor and Adobe says that chip is backed by 4 GB RAM, although that information has not yet been confirmed by Apple. Performance of the device cannot be quantified yet, as we’ve had only moments to test the device out, but based on the Apple A9 performance, the higher-end chip should be decent.
Under the hood, the iPad Pro will be available in three different variants. Check out the iPad Pro pricing information chart below for an easy look at how Apple is marketing the new tablet. Beware: it’s expensive.
iPad Pro Wi-Fi 32 GB price: $799
iPad Pro Wi-Fi 128 GB price: $949
iPad Pro cellular 128 GB price: $1079
The base model of the iPad Pro is a bit disappointing when it comes to specs, because a starting memory of 32 GB should not be priced so high. The base model of the Surface Pro 3 with double the ROM costs this much, which shows how much of a premium Apple is actually charging for the (in my opinion inferior) slate. The larger storage Wi-Fi model is also a bit too expensive for what it has to offer, as I think the almost $1000 price tag would have been more suitable for the LTE model, with the Wi-Fi model staying at $$850. But that’s just my two cents, I’m never happy with Apple pricing anyway.
The Microsoft Surface Pro 4 is expected to be much more affordable this time around, although we doubt that Microsoft would sacrifice the revenue it could make with the hybrid device just to please the community, but who knows. Apparently, the Surface Pro 4 will be available in a plethora of configurations, but a few things will be the same with every model: like the design and camera.
When it comes to processing power, the Microsoft Surface Pro 4 will either come with new Intel Skylake series H processors in i3, i5 and i7 variants or new fanless processor from Intel. The base model of the Surface Pro 4 will most likely sport an Intel Skylake H i3 processor, backed by 4 G BRAM and 64 GB storage. There will most likely be different models available, so here are our own versions of what to expect, alongside Surface Pro 4 prices.
Surface Pro 4 price for 4 GB RAM, i3 CPU and 64 GB storage: $750
Surface Pro 4 price for 4 GB RAM, i5 CPU and 128 GB storage: $950
Surface Pro 4 price for 8 GB RAM, i5 CPU and 256 GB storage: $1150
Surface Pro 4 price for 8 GB RAM, i7 CPU and 256 GB storage: $1350
Surface Pro 4 price for 8 GB RAM, i7 CPU and 512 GB storage: $1550
These prices are just rough estimates and if you’re familiar with Microsoft, you’ll notice they’re a bit lower than the Surface Pro 3 price. That’s because with the iPad Pro price being a bit high and Microsoft probably wanting to target customers who find the iPad Pro too expensive, the prices are sure to be more friendly to the consumer. If we’re right about the prices, Microsoft has a good shot at remaining the leader in the hybrid industry. If not and the Surface Pro 4 turns out to be even more expensive than the iPad Pro, the audiences interested in such devices might split up. Since we’re not analysts, we can’t accurately predict company or consumer choices.
Moving on from processing power to connectivity, let’s see what each of these hybrids has to offer. The iPad Pro comes in with a Lightning port, Touch ID, a Smart Connector, dual microphones, headphone jack, volume buttons and a power button. Wi‑Fi (802.11a/ b/ g/ n/ ac); dual channel (2.4GHz and 5GHz); HT80 with MIMO and Bluetooth 4.2 are also on board, with LTE Cat 6 added to the cellular model. The lack of an USB Type-C port came as a surprise to everyone, seeing as Apple seemed pretty set on making it the standard as soon as possible.
The Microsoft Surface Pro 4 should sport the same Wi-Fi, Bluetooth 4.0 LE, stereo speakers, this time even better ones apparently, USB Type C, USB 3.0, microSD card reader, headphone jack, mini display port, cover port and charging port, of course. Connectivity-wise, the Surface Pro 4 might be launched with a cellular version, too, which would be pretty neat as many people have asked for LTE on a Surface. We’ll have to see about that, as most people find it unlikely.
iPad Pro vs Surface Pro 4 camera
When it comes to convertible devices, tablets and hybrids, few people give great importance to cameras. Most people concern themselves with the front camera, but pay little attention to the rear one, as video conferecing usually happens with the former. that being said, Apple amde it good with the iPad Pro, as both the front and back cameras are rather impressive. On the rear, the iPad Pro camera measures 8 MP and it’s an iSight sensor, so expect iPhone 6 Plus-grade photos, complete with video recording, autofocus, f2.4 aperture, and more. The front camera is a FaceTime 1.2 MP camera, which is pretty decent for video conferences and work-selfies.
The Microsoft Surface Pro 4 probably won’t pay that much attention to the camera setup, although some new augmented reality features have been rumored to involve a motion sensing front camera, in the spirit of the Microsoft HoloLens. Last year’s Surface Pro 3 came with 5 MP cameras on both the front and back, capable of 1080p video and were not too bright. This year, however, Microsoft might use motion sensing technology and 8 MP cameras on both sides for an entirely new experience. Even without motion sensing, the new cameras should provide decent results.
iPad Pro vs Surface Pro 4 battery and conclusions
The iPad Pro has to be a winner in the battery game, otherwise the entire launch would have been a bit amiss. Apparently, the iPad Pro comes with a 38.5-watt-hour battery that is said to last for about 10 hours on Wi-Fi. It is not clear if there will be a bigger battery in the LTE model of the iPad Pro, but our guess is not. Since the battery life of the slate has not been thoroughly tested yet, we can’t say for sure if the 10-hour battery life is real or not or how the iPad Pro will handle the extensive heavy use it is designed for. If the tablet surpasses the 10-hour goal or at least keeps its minimum at 8, people will be content. If not, the iPad Pro might flop.
The Surface Pro 3 had a good battery life, but it could have been much better. With about 7 hours of screen on time, the Surface Pro 3 was pretty decent, but people will definitely want more from the Surface Pro 4. We expect Microsoft to make the battery life of the new convertible at least 10 hours long if they want to compete agains the iPad Pro. Depending on whether LTE will be a part of the design, the battery life of the next Microsoft hybrid should be exemplary, otherwise people will start getting tired of always asking for more battery and less thinness and not getting any.
Conclusions can’t be draw yet, as the Surface Pro 4 isn’t official and the iPad Pro has not yet been thoroughly put to the test. Nonetheless, the iPad Pro seems like a pretty well-designed and well-engineered device for a first generation. Now all that remains is to test how far performance and battery life go, and if Apple truly made the iPad Pro a good tablet and an even better laptop, the bang for buck of the device will end up being fair. If the iPad Pro battery life is disappointing, or if performance and user experience aren’t as good as advertised, the Surface Pro 4 has more chances of becoming the staple of the Holidays. We’ll just have to see.