Thursday, 19 March 2020 11:20

Apple releases new iPad Pro, LiDAR scanner, trackpad, backlit keyboard Featured

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Global technology manufacturer, Apple, has announced a new iPad Pro and accompanying backlit keyboard and trackpad accessory.

The new iPad Pro is the first update since 2018's model and comes with the A12Z Bionic chip, Liquid Retina display, an Ultra Wide camera, studio-quality microphones and perhaps most surprisingly, a LiDAR scanner with depth-sensing capabilities.

The combination of professional cameras, motion sensor, performance, audio, display and now LiDAR "extends the lead of iPad Pro as the world's best device fo raugmented reality (AR)," Apple states.

iPadOS 13.4 comes with trackpad support, and Apple also introduced the new Magic Keyboard for iPad Pro with a floating design, smooth angle adjustment, a backlit keyboard and trackpad.

Apple says it has not copied the trackpad experience from macOS but reimagined it for the iPad Pro. As users move their finger across the trackpad the pointer transforms to highlight user interface elements. Multi-touch gestures make it fast and easy to navigate without lifting a hand.

The A12Z Bionic chip has an eight-core CPU, an eight-core GPU, enhanced thermal architecture, tuned performance controllers and a Neural Engine. Battery life lasts up to 10 hours and provides gigabit-class LTE as well as faster Wi-Fi connectivity.

The Liquid Retina display is available in both 11" and 12.9" sizes, and lets users see photos, videos, apps and games in vivid detail. ProMotion technology adjusts the display refresh rate up to 120Hz for ultra-smooth scrolling and responsiveness. True Tone, high brightness and an anti-reflective coating combine to deliver a superior viewing experience no matter where it is being used.

The LiDAR Scanner enables capabilities never before possible on any mobile device. It measures the distance to surrounding objects up to five meters away, works both indoors and outdoors, and operates at the photon level at nano-second speeds. New depth frameworks in iPadOS combine depth points measured by the LiDAR Scanner, data from both cameras and motion sensors, and is enhanced by computer vision algorithms on the A12Z Bionic for a more detailed understanding of a scene. The tight integration of these elements enables a whole new class of AR experiences on iPad Pro.

The new iPad Pro is available to order today, and will be available in stores next week.

The 11" iPad Pro starts at a recommended retail price of $1,329 for the Wi-Fi model and $1,579 for the Wi-Fi + Cellular model.

The 12.9" iPad Pro starts at $1,649 for the Wi-Fi model and $1,899 for Wi-Fi + Cellular.

The starting configuration provides 128GB storage, and 256GB, 512GB and 1TB configurations are also available.

iPad OS 13.4 will be available on March 25th.

“The new iPad Pro introduces advanced technologies never before available in mobile computing,” said Phil Schiller, Apple’s senior vice president of Worldwide Marketing. “Combining the most advanced mobile display with powerful performance, pro cameras, pro audio, the breakthrough LiDAR Scanner and new Magic Keyboard with Trackpad, this is another huge leap forward for iPad. There’s no other device in the world like the new iPad Pro and we think our customers are going to love it.”

“We’re making iPad even more capable and versatile by bringing trackpad support to iPadOS,” said Craig Federighi, Apple’s senior vice president of Software Engineering. “We carefully considered the best way to integrate trackpad use into a touch-first environment while retaining everything our customers know and love about iPad. We’re thrilled to bring this new way of interacting with iPad to the millions of people using iPadOS today.”

 

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David M Williams

David has been computing since 1984 where he instantly gravitated to the family Commodore 64. He completed a Bachelor of Computer Science degree from 1990 to 1992, commencing full-time employment as a systems analyst at the end of that year. David subsequently worked as a UNIX Systems Manager, Asia-Pacific technical specialist for an international software company, Business Analyst, IT Manager, and other roles. David has been the Chief Information Officer for national public companies since 2007, delivering IT knowledge and business acumen, seeking to transform the industries within which he works. David is also involved in the user group community, the Australian Computer Society technical advisory boards, and education.

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