iPad Pro (2024) Review: An Unbeatable Beast in Performance Condemned to a Life of Being a Tablet

iPad Pro (2024) Review: An Unbeatable Beast in Performance Condemned to a Life of Being a Tablet

  • The latest iPad Pro is the first to feature Apple’s most powerful processor to date, the Apple M4 chip, which is making a big entrance.

  • Apple’s tablet is a device with the heart of a MacBook Pro and iPad-optimized apps.

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Ipad Pro 2024

Apple's new 2024 iPad Pro, the best iPad to date, offers a combination of top-notch hardware, design, software, and materials, making it the best tablet in terms of features. Period. However, just because it outshines the competition doesn’t necessarily mean it’s the best choice in all scenarios. This has actually been a recurring theme during my time with the latest iPad Pro.

I’ve been using the iPad as a travel companion for years. Currently, I have an 11-inch iPad Pro (2018) that I use daily as an accessory and also as a workstation for covering tech events for work. I particularly like its lightweight design and its effectiveness when writing articles and making last-minute corrections. However, it falls short of being a complete replacement for my computer. Will the new 2024 iPad Pro be the tablet that finally replaces my Mac? I aim to answer that question with this review.

Table of Contents (9)

iPad Pro (2024) Specs



OLED Ultra Retina XDR display


Wide color (P3)

True Tone

Antireflective coating

Nano-texture display glass on 1 TB and 2

1,600 nits peak brightness


Apple Silicon M4


8 GB/16 GB


256 GB/512 GB/1 TB


12 MP

f/1.8 aperture

Digital zoom up to 5x



12 MP, f/2.4


Zoom up to 2x

Center Stage


31.29 W/h

Up to 10 hours of surfing the web on Wi-Fi

Up to 9 hours of surfing the web using cellular data (Wi-Fi + Cellular Model)


iPadOS 17


Wi-Fi 6E

Bluetooth 5.3

Optional 5G


USB-C 4/Thunderbolt

4x studio-quality speakers

Face ID

5G models only compatible with eSIM


11.09 x 8.48 x 0.20 inches

1.28 pounds


Starts at $1,299

Apple iPad Pro 13-Inch (M4): Ultra Retina XDR Display, 256GB, Landscape 12MP Front Camera/12MP Back Camera, LiDAR Scanner, Wi-Fi 6E, Face ID, All-Day Battery Life — Space Black

Design, Display, and Audio: Outstanding, to Say the Least

Ipad Pro 2024 1

Given Apple’s reputation for creating top-notch devices, thinking about getting a tablet and leaning towards an iPad usually go hand in hand. The company is also sets the standard in design. In fact, the iPad’s sleek aluminum body, slim design, and overall aesthetics have set the standard for many high-end tablets. Of course, Apple then decides that this isn't enough, and it makes it even better.

When unboxing the 2024 iPad Pro, I was immediately struck by its impressively thin profile. It’s remarkable how much power is packed into a 0.20-inch-thick device. However, I have some reservations about whether extreme thinness necessarily translates to improved usability. It’s still big and uncomfortable to hold for extended periods, especially when using it to read in bed at night. But truth be told, this might only be the case for the 13-inch model. The 11-inch model might be easier to handle.

Ipad Pro 2024 2

The new iPad Pro is incredibly slim, and the 13-inch display provides ample screen real estate. However, it does come at the cost of comfort. Additionally, the build quality is impeccable, with a high-quality aluminum body and minimal front bezels. The TrueDepth front camera is located on one of the tablet’s sides, but I found it difficult at times to use it to unlock the device in landscape mode. The quad-speaker system, for its part, delivers exceptional audio quality and power.

The centrally located USB-C port almost spans the entire thickness of the tablet. I doubt anyone is going to fold the iPad in two, but should this occur, the USB-C area seems to be a potential weak point in the device’s construction. The hole in the aluminum body and the small space left by the iPad’s minimal thickness take their toll.

Ipad Pro 2024 3 The iPad is so thin that its USB-C port is practically at the bottom edge.

The buttons are located in the upper left corner (in landscape mode), but they can be a struggle to locate at times. They also have an aluminum finish, which further enhances the tablet’s tactile experience.


Ipad Pro 2024 4

The 13-inch front panel provides a large work surface to enjoy high-quality multimedia content and using the tablet for drawing. I’m pleased that Apple chose an OLED panel over the mini LED of 2022's iPad Pro, as it enhances the visual quality, contrasts, and color reproduction and eliminates the halo effect, making this year's iPad Pro even more pro.

Ipad Pro 2024 5 Top, iPad Pro (2022). Bottom, iPad Pro (2024). OLED puts an end to mini-LED halos.

The transition to OLED screens (Apple uses two panels together) results in a much thinner device, a significant advancement for the tablet. It also enhances the display visibility in most scenarios. Upon turning it on, you immediately notice the sharpness and vibrancy of the colors. The saturation is well-controlled. ProMotion makes navigating the interface and content a delight, significantly improving viewing the device in dark environments. Apple completes the tablet’s finish with a matte anti-glare treatment, which can slightly dull the content in certain environments like the outdoors.

Choosing OLED instead of mini LED is key to reproducing content in dark environments: The high contrast and the absence of the halo surrounding the luminous contours is a great qualitative leap.

The OLED display’s high contrast and pure blacks without a halo effect in backlit areas (a drawback of 2022's iPad Pro) made Apple's newest iPad enjoyable for reading before bedtime and watching movies with the lights off. The minimum brightness can bother you in complete darkness, but the automatic brightness adapts well to changing lighting conditions, and you can even use the 2024 iPad Pro outdoors in full daylight. Direct sunlight on the screen presents challenges, although it’s still usable if you pay extra attention to texts and menus.

Ipad Pro 2024 6 Pen vibration and tilt detection make the new Pencil Pro easier to use.

The 2024 iPad Pro screen responds perfectly to touch, whether you're using your finger or a stylus. I used it with the new Apple Pencil Pro, and the experience was excellent even though I'm clearly not an artist. The iPad's tilt detection helps visualize the stroke angle before drawing, the haptic response to pencil gestures is delightful, and the stroke displacement latency is negligible.

Ipad Pro 2024 7


Ipad Pro 2024 8

The sound quality of the 2024 iPad Pro is exceptional, which is just what you’d expect from a high-end tablet like this one. The device is equipped with four powerful speakers that deliver high-fidelity audio, providing good bass for explosions in movies and very high volume for any audio. Even at maximum volume, the sound remains clear and free from distortion. In my tests, it reached up to 90 dB for movies and music.

With four speakers working simultaneously, the tablet’s vibrations can be annoying when the iPad is at high volume.

The latest iPad Pro supports spatial audio, allows you to set a maximum sound level, supports spatial audio customization to fit your ears, and delivers high-quality audio output through both Bluetooth headphones and USB-C audio. However, due to the absence of a 3.5 mm port, a USB-C adapter with a DAC is required for analog audio output, as the iPad doesn’t include it by default.

Ipad Pro 2024 9

Lastly, the iPad Pro (2024) proves to be very useful for audio and video calls. My sample device included mobile connectivity via eSIM, which you can use by simply scanning the card or transferring it from another Apple device. This connectivity enables crystal-clear calls even in noisy environments.

Performance, Software, and Battery Life: Where Virtues and Shortcomings Go Hand-in-Hand

Ipad Pro 2024 10

I was quite surprised that Apple chose to introduce its latest line of chips with the 2024 iPad Pro, but that’s exactly what happened: The Apple M4 chip made its debut in the tablet and will soon be expanding to future MacBooks. On paper, this means it's getting a significant increase in power, and I can confirm that it delivers in practice. However, the usual issue with the iPad Pro persists, as such immense power often goes underutilized.

I had hoped that the iPad Pro, sharing a SoC with Apple computers, would eventually transition to convertible laptops. However, it seems that Apple CEO Tim Cook and his team don’t share this vision. While macOS could run perfectly on the 2024 iPad Pro, either alone or in parallel with iPadOS, Apple continues to develop software exclusively designed for tablets. This might not necessarily be a drawback, though.

Ipad Pro 2024 11

I’ve played several mobile games on the new iPad Pro and pushed the graphics quality to the maximum, and not once did I experience any stuttering. The performance is impeccable, with smooth animations (thanks in part to the ProMotion screen) and a constant sense that the iPad Pro (2024) is in a league of its own in terms of software capabilities. The M4 could handle AAA games effortlessly, but compatible titles are scarce (with the exception of Death Stranding). This limitation extends to other apps, except for video, audio, and image editing, albeit with some nuances, as these are always apps tailored to a tablet environment.

Ipad Pro 2024 12

Now, let’s talk about benchmarks. How does the newest iPad Pro perform? It outperforms my MacBook Pro and virtually every other tablet claiming to be in its league, as well as a good number of laptops.

Ipad Pro 2024 13 Left to right: GeekBench 6, 3D Mark Wild Life Unlimited, and 3D Mark Wild Life Stress.




IPAD PRO (2024)

Single core: 3,782

Multicore: 14,521


Best: 8,007

Worst: 6,601

Stability: 81.7%


I used iPadOS 17 on the 2024 iPad Pro and it worked flawlessly. I didn’t experience any crashes or noticeable glitches. The latest version of the software is perfectly adapted for use in desktop mode with the new Magic Keyboard. While some shortcuts for apps like Photoshop or Lightroom don’t work, this isn’t Apple’s fault. The tablet experience is excellent, and with a little practice, it’s easy to jump between apps using on-screen gestures. The Split View feature is very useful on the 13-inch screen, and I appreciate the OS' compatibility with the MacBook, especially when using the dual screen with Sidecar and extending the mouse pointer using the Universal Control.

Ipad Pro 2024 14 I attached the Magic Keyboard to the 2024 iPad Pro while performing a benchmark test.

I use the iPad Pro daily as an extension of my MacBook, and it’s perfect as an on-the-go office. The new model isn’t a major evolution in this area, but it does improve the experience at night thanks to the OLED screen. iPadOS 17 comes with the standard Apple apps and guarantees several years of updates (typically six to seven years). Installing apps from outside the App Store will also be possible by the end of 2024, although only in Europe. In general, the software, in combination with the hardware, doesn’t become outdated. I’m confident that the 2024 iPad Pro will still be working properly in 2030, as long as it doesn’t suffer from any manufacturing problems.

Ipad Pro 2024 15

iPads are known for having long lives, and this is definitely a good reason to invest in them. Aside from the expected battery degradation, my 2018 iPad Pro is still running like new. I feel that it’s a missed opportunity that such a well-rounded product doesn’t have the option to run macOS and computer apps. Being tied to mobile and tablet apps seems like a missed opportunity to me. I understand that Apple wants to keep the two families of devices distinct, but I believe that, sooner or later, it’ll have to reconsider. A 2024 iPad Pro with both iPadOS and macOS would be a better choice in my opinion, rather than being restricted to a mobile-only ecosystem.

Ipad Pro 2024 16

Battery Life and Charging

Now, let’s discuss the latest iPad Pro’s battery performance. There are no surprises. The battery capacity is closely aligned with the time you spend away from a power source. I’ve written and edited this review using the new tablet, and I’d rate this experience with a B+. In my experience, the battery life is solid, but not extraordinary. It can last a full day with heavy usage on the go and up to two days with moderate usage. I typically get around ten to eleven hours of screen time with average use.

Ipad Pro 2024 17

My usual activities on the iPad include streaming content, photo editing, writing, web browsing, Fitness+ sports training, and playing graphic-intensive games. The battery performance is decent, with approximately 6% battery drain per hour during regular use, 40% drain per hour at maximum performance (measured with 3D Mark tests), and about 0.5% drain with the screen off and in standby mode connected to Wi-Fi.

The Apple M4 chip, at maximum performance, consumes more than 30% of the battery every hour. The iPad doesn’t overheat. The passive cooling is amazing.

Moving on to charging: The process is fast, reaching a maximum of around 37 W during my tests. The charging speed progressively decreases as the battery level goes beyond 20%, dropping to 10-15 W. It’s important to note that the iPad comes with a USB-C cable for charging, but the charger isn’t included in the box. Although this may seem like a drawback, the USB-C charging port allows flexibility in using other compatible chargers, such as a phone charger you might already have at home.

Ipad Pro 2024 18 The power indicator I used while charging the iPad Pro.

I conducted charging tests using a Shargeek 170 battery with fast charging compatible with Power Delivery 3.1. The charging times and amperages I obtained were as follows:

  • 5-minute charge: 8% battery
  • 10-minute charge: 13% battery
  • 20-minute charge: 23% charge
  • 30-minute charge: 34% charge
  • 50-minute charge: 56% charge
  • Total: 1 hour and 58 minutes

Cameras: From Two Back Lenses to a Better Single One. On Each Side

Ipad Pro 2024 19

The 2022 iPad Pro had a dual rear camera and a LiDAR sensor. In my opinion, multiple cameras on a tablet didn’t make sense. It’s better to have one good camera on each side of the device, and that’s exactly what Apple's done with the new model.

Let’s take a detailed look at the camera hardware. Fundamentally, it doesn’t differ much from what we saw in the previous model:

  • 12 MP rear camera: F/1.8 aperture, autofocus with Focus Pixels, adaptive True Tone flash, 5x digital zoom, and video recording of up to 4K at 60 fps
  • LiDAR camera for capturing scene depth
  • 12 MP front camera: Aperture of f/2.4, 122º field of view, Center Stage for video conferencing, 2x zoom out, video recording in 1080p at 60 fps, and True Depth facial recognition system

We all know that a tablet, especially a 13-inch device, is not the best device for taking photos. It’s not comfortable, and holding it up to take pictures and tapping the screen to focus can be a hassle. It’s better to use a phone. However, the truth is that the iPad Pro's camera performance is actually quite good.

Ipad Pro 2024 20

I was surprised by the performance of the camera in good lighting and outdoor conditions. The shots were remarkably sharp, with great color accuracy and white balance. The camera also maintained a good dynamic range. These qualities are already impressive for a smartphone and especially valuable for an iPad.

Ipad Pro 2024 21 I can’t say a single bad thing out of this shot, even the dynamic range is good.

However, Apple doesn’t prioritize camera capabilities for the iPad, so the Camera app is limited compared to the iPhone. For example, the Portrait mode only works with the front camera, and features like long exposure, panoramic mode, and shooting setting customization are unavailable. However, the device does include a dual-tone flash, which can do the job in dark situations but result in overexposure in other settings.

Although the native camera settings are very limited, Apple allows access to them through third-party apps, such as ProCamera. Even RAW for photos, which isn't available in the iPad Camera app.

The rear camera’s performance suffers in low light, with noticeable noise and a loss of sharpness. The watercolor effect is visible in medium-light situations and indoors. Overall, the rear camera of the 2024 iPad Pro is a true all-in-one, with good quality photography results, but it struggles with completely dark shots unless the foreground is within the flash range.

Ipad Pro 2024 22 Using Portrait mode with the front camera.

In order to take photos in Portrait mode, you need to switch to the front camera, which has background blur enabled. If you prefer using the rear camera, you can achieve the same effect using apps like Focus, which produces very good results. The cropping and bokeh effects are impressive, but there’s some loss of detail, particularly when using Portrait zoom. However, this improves when you don't use zoom. The software correction for optical deformation at the edges is quite effective and is selected by default in the camera settings.

If you want to see the photos I’ve taken with the iPad Pro 2024 using both the front and rear cameras in different situations, go to this Google Photos album.

2024 iPad Pro: Xataka’s Opinion

Ipad Pro 2024 23

The 2024 iPad Pro is the best iPad and the best tablet currently available. However, it falls short of a being a convertible tablet, which could’ve helped Apple dominate the market. One of the drawbacks of the iPad Pro is its high price, especially considering it’s “just” a tablet. It’s not the most cost-effective device for media playback, and it can’t handle demanding software, despite the availability of design, video editing, and music creation apps. While some apps are available for iPadOS, many of them lose functionality compared to their macOS counterparts.

Ipad Pro 2024 24

I used Apple's newest iPad Pro for writing, developing, and editing photos. I completed the entire review in Safari and published it from the tablet. However, I had to use Photoshop on my MacBook Pro to create mockups for the screenshots and for final photo editing. Unfortunately, when I saved photos from Photoshop for iPad, they lost color and exposure, so I had to do additional editing using Photoshop for macOS.

I reviewed the 2024 iPad Pro with the Magic Keyboard attached at all time. Although the result was mostly satisfactory, I needed more time to do my work than I would for the same amount of work from a desktop environment.
Ipad Pro 2024 25

The general feeling was that as advanced as the iPad is, it’s better suited to complement other devices rather than being the primary tool for completing tasks. While some people may find the iPad sufficient for work, I don’t believe it can fully replace traditional work devices for most people. However, it could work well as a secondary device.

If you’re looking for a tablet to watch content, the display quality is excellent, but considering the price, I believe an iPad Air or even a basic iPad would be a better choice. For gaming, if you’re into mobile gaming, it’s a decent option, but again, it’s more suitable for those with big budgets. However, if you’re willing to invest in a tablet that will remain top-notch for several years, then go for it. I’ve enjoyed using it every day for this review because it’s built to last.

Ipad Pro 2024 26

The Apple M4 chip is a powerhouse in all environments. The system is extremely fluid, the screen is exactly what a top-tier iPad needs, and it comes with a great sound system and good-quality connectivity. Despite being extremely thin and noticeably lightweight, it’s not easier to operate than previous models (although this changes with the 11-inch model). The battery life meets expectations, and the camera performance exceeds the average for a tablet. It’s a tablet that truly shines and could be an outstanding all-in-one device with some small improvements. It’s a shame that the Apple M4 chip seems to be overkill.


Design 9.25
Screen 9.5
Performance 9.75
Software 9
Battery 8.75


  • The Apple M4 is a powerhouse.
  • Excellent display.
  • The audio is on par with the excellent OLED panel.


  • Too expensive to be “just” a tablet.
  • It would be unbeatable with macOS running in parallel to iPadOS.
  • Apple doesn’t include a charger in the box anymore.

Apple iPad Pro 13-Inch (M4): Ultra Retina XDR Display, 256GB, Landscape 12MP Front Camera/12MP Back Camera, LiDAR Scanner, Wi-Fi 6E, Face ID, All-Day Battery Life — Space Black

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