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(Pocket-lint) - It's Apple's biggest tablet ever. But does that mean the iPad Pro can replace both your laptop and tablet to become the sole computing device in your home?

With many divided over whether or not a giant tablet is the answer, we've been using the iPad Pro in both work and play to try and understand who it is aimed at, who would want it, and whether it really will change the way you digitally work, rest and play.

Pocket-lint apple ipad pro 12 9 review image 7
Our quick take

As a laptop replacement for around the house, the iPad Pro fits the bill. It is fast, quick, and easy to use. Whether working on the sofa (if there's a coffee table), watching Netflix or Sky Go in bed, or sitting at a desk working on annotations with the Pencil, that extra screen looks great.

When on the go the iPad Pro becomes a little more awkward.

It's like carrying around a laptop, but without the rigidity of one. In our use over a year, we've found back of the seat train tray tables too small, and we felt too self-conscious in coffee shops when using it. At times, it feels akin to using a 15-inch or 17-inch laptop on the go and given the choice we much prefer the much smaller, more manageable 10.5-inch Pro instead.

Then there is the question as to whether it really replaces the laptop. For a lot of people, the release of iOS 11 has made that much more of a reality than when the 12.9 first launched, and for many they'll be able to get through the day, week, month without missing your laptop.

In terms of never needing to touch a computer again, we are almost there. Power users will disagree, but for the majority the iPad Pro will delivery just what they need.

This review was originally published in 12 December 2015.

Apple iPad Pro 12.9 review: Back to the drawing board?

Apple iPad Pro 12.9

4.0 stars
  • Massive screen with high resolution looks great
  • Apple Pencil accessory works really well
  • Best iPad performance to date
  • Smart Connector wireless accessory connections
  • Weights same as a laptop with optional keyboard added
  • Not as portable as other iPads
  • Keyboard accessory doesn't truly turn it into a laptop
  • IOS not OS X will divide "pro" opinion


A big design

  • 677grams in weight
  • Measures 305.7mm x 220.6mm across the face
  • 12.9-inch 2732x2048 resolution screen 

The iPad Pro is considerably bigger than the standard 9.7-inch iPad (2018) or the 10.5-inch iPad Pro, but features the same elegant design, albeit with a few key changes.


The first major one is the screen. It's 12.9-inches, and as you can imagine, that makes a significant difference in both physical size and weight. The Pro is larger than an A4 sheet of paper, but with a thickness of just 6.9mm it maintains a slender profile design, that means it's a lot more manageable that a bulky laptop.

Despite the larger screen, the iPad Pro's resolution makes everything look sharp, whether watching movies, writing reports, or sketching with the Apple Pencil.

The tablet's size increase feels akin to a laptop screen, even though there's not got the permanent keyboard jutting out from beneath - you'll need to pay extra to add that Smart Keyboard.

That extra screen real-estate is welcome for some situations but will make you feel conscious when out and about. It almost goes without saying really: the iPad Pro is certainly less portable, compared to the bijou iPad, iPad Pro 10.5 and almost-phone-sized iPad mini.

Get past the screen size and there are other new features to enjoy. The 12.9 features four speakers - one for each corner - and that makes a huge difference to audio when watching movies, TV shows, or playing games. At times, in a quiet hotel room, for example, you might even feel that the volume is too loud.

Perhaps the most hidden of features is the inclusion of Smart Connector that will let you connect and power the Apple Smart Keyboard.