After almost 1.5 years, Apple has refreshed its iPad Pro lineup with faster internals and other major upgrades. If you are wondering how the 2020 iPad Pro lineup is better than the 2018 lineup it replaces, read our in-depth comparison below.
Apart from the usual performance upgrades, Apple has also added a new LiDAR Sensor to its iPad Pro lineup this time around to offer an improved AR experience. The camera setup has also seen a decent upgrade and there are many other creator-focused improvements.
2020 iPad Pro vs 2018 iPad Pro: What’s the Difference
Design and Display
- 2018 iPad Pro 11-inch – 247.6 x 178.5 x 5.9mm, 468/468gms (Wi-Fi/LTE)
- 2020 iPad Pro 11-inch – 247.6 x 178.5 x 5.9mm, 471/473gms (Wi-Fi/LTE)
In terms of design and display, the 2020 iPad Pro and the 2018 iPad Pro lineup are almost the same. They are available in the same 11-inch and 12.9-inch configurations and have the same dimensions. There is a slight weight difference between the two generations but it is nothing major.
The weight difference between the 11-inch iPads is mentioned above, while the difference between the 12.9-inch iPad Pro models is as follows:
- 2018 12.9-inch iPad Pro – 280.6 x 214.9 x 5.9mm, 641/643gms (Wi-Fi/LTE)
- 2020 12.9-inch iPad Pro – 280.6 x 214.9 x 5.9mm, 631/633gms (Wi-Fi/LTE)
The display brightness, refresh rate, and other aspects are also the same between the two generations of the iPad Pro. This means you are still getting an excellent fully laminated Liquid Retina display with a max brightness of 600 nits, ProMotion technology, and Wide color display support.
- 2018 iPad Pro – A12X Bionic chip, 7-core GPU, Neural Engine, Embedded M12 coprocessor
- 2020 iPad Pro – A12Z Bionic chip, 8-core GPU, Neural Engine, Embedded M12 coprocessor
This is an area where the 2020 iPad Pro is a step up from the 2018 iPad Pro, though it is surprising to see Apple go with a variant of the A12 Bionic chip inside its newest iPad Pro instead of A13. Apple has also improved the thermal management on the 2020 iPad Pro lineup which should lead to it offering higher sustained performance for a longer period of time. The GPU performance has also improved as the A12Z Bionic comes with an 8-core CPU compared to a 7-core one on the A12X.
- 2018 iPad Pro – 64GB, 256GB, 512GB, 1TB
- 2020 iPad Pro – 128GB, 256GB, 512GB, 1TB
The 2020 iPad Pro now ships with a base storage of 128GB — 2x of what the 2018 iPad Pro shipped with. Other storage variants and their pricing remain the same.
- 2018 iPad Pro – Up to 10 hours while browsing the web on Wi-Fi
- 2020 iPad Pro – Up to 10 hours while browsing the web on Wi-Fi
Both generations of the iPad Pro feature a USB-C port and can fast charge over it.
- 2018 iPad Pro – 12MP f/1.8 wide angle, Quad-LED True Tone Flash, 7MP TrueDepth camera
- 2020 iPad Pro – 12MP f/1.8 wide angle, 10MP f/2.4 ultra wide angle, Brighter True Tone flash, 7MP TrueDepth camera
One of the major differences between the two generations of the iPad Pro is the addition of the ultra-wide angle shooter on the 2020 lineup. It allows one to zoom out of a scene by 0.5x. Additionally, it supports recording 4K videos at 60fps as well as sl0w-motion videos at 240fps.
The front TrueDepth camera of both tablets remains the same at 7MP.
- 2018 iPad Pro – Wi-Fi ac, Speeds up to 866Mbps, Supports up to 29 bands
- 2020 iPad Pro – Wi-Fi 6, Speeds up to 1.2Gbps, Supports up to 30 bands
- 2018 iPad Pro – Four speaker audio, two microphones
- 2020 iPad Pro – Four speaker audio, five-array microphones
While the speaker setup on the 2020 iPad Pro remains the same as its predecessor, it ships with a five-array microphone setup that allows it to record crystal clear audio.
- 2018 iPad Pro – Face ID
- 2020 iPad Pro – Face ID
Both generations of the iPad Pro feature Face ID that works even horizontally.
- 2018 iPad Pro – Smart Keyboard Folio, Magic Keyboard, Apple Pencil (2nd gen.)
- 2020 iPad Pro – Smart Keyboard Folio, Magic Keyboard, Apple Pencil (2nd gen.)
Apple’s new Magic Keyboard with integrated trackpad that launched alongside the 2020 iPad Pro lineup is also compatible with the 2018 iPad Pro. The iPadOS 13.4 update will add trackpad and mouse support to the 2018 iPad Pro lineup as well.
The 2020 iPad Pro comes with a LiDAR scanner which is a big deal. This new sensor allows the 2020 iPad Pro lineup to offer a superior AR experience compared to previous iPhones and iPads. Using the sensor, the iPad Pro can measure objects and distances up to 5m away. The updated Measure app in iPadOS 13.4 will be able to take advantage of the LiDAR Scanner. Additionally, all ARKit apps will also get instant AR placement, improved motion capture and people occlusion thanks to the scanner.
- 2018 iPad Pro – Starts from $799/$949
- 2020 iPad Pro – Starts from $799/$949
The 2018 and the 2020 iPad Pro lineup have the same starting price. The 11-inch starts from $799 for the WI-Fi variant, while the cellular variant starts from $949. The bigger 12.9-inch iPad Pro starts from $999 and $1,149 for the Wi-Fi and cellular variants, respectively.