Written by Dewy

Apple iPad Pro (2017) vs iPad (2018)

It appears the Apple iPad Pro has a serious competitor: iPad (2018). For the first time, I can use the Apple Pencil on another model than the iPad Pro. In what other ways are these tablets similar? Or are they completely different? I find out for you.

Apple iPad (2018)

9.7-inch Retina Display | Internet only via WiFi | 128GB storage capacity
no longer available
  • Thanks to the support for Apple Pencil, you can mark your words, create handwritten notes, and draw next to texts.
  • The Apple A10 Fusion chip allows you to navigate through apps faster, edit your 4K footage, or play demanding games.
  • The 4:3 aspect ratio is suitable for reading and browsing.
  • The storage capacity can't be expanded with a memory card.

The display

iPad Pro display

Apple iPad Pro (2017)

Apple iPad Pro comes in 2 sizes: 12.9 and 10.5 inches. The 10.5-inch screen is larger than that of the iPad 2018, but on the whole, the tablet doesn't look that much bigger. That's because the bezel on the iPad Pro is narrower. I can see colors very well on the screen, they adapt to the ambient color temperature; this is known as True Tone. Even when the light is warmer, the colors look the same. Thanks to the anti-reflective coating, I can easily read text from the screen.

iPad 2018 display

Apple iPad (2018)

Apple iPad (2018) has a 9.7-inch Retina screen. The quality of this screen isn't quite as good as that on the iPad Pro. Because I've also used the iPad Pro, I do notice the difference a little bit. I wonder though, if I would have noticed that if I hadn't used an iPad Pro before. Outside, I notice a clear difference with the iPad Pro. IPad (2018) doesn't have an anti-reflective coating, which means I get more glare on my screen from the sun.

Processor and capacity

iPad Pro processor

Apple iPad Pro (2017)

The Apple iPad Pro has an A10X Fusion Chip with 4GB of RAM. Whether I'm playing a high-end game or using an augmented reality app, iPad Pro works perfectly. I can even open 3 to 4 apps simultaneously on my screen. For the iPad Pro, I can choose from 64, 256, and 512GB. That means I have more choice than with iPad (2018) and the storage options are larger. If I were to use the iPad Pro professionally, a storage capacity of 256 or 512GB would be ideal.

iPad (2018) processor

Apple iPad (2018)

The Apple iPad has an A10 Fusion Chip with 2GB of RAM. I know that one from the iPhone 7. I can navigate different apps smoothly and the split screen lets me use 2 apps simultaneously. When it comes to more demanding apps, I notice that the iPad is a little slower than the iPad Pro. I can choose from 32 or 128GB of storage capacity, but there are also enough online storage options such as iCloud of course. For my day-to-day work, 128GB is more than enough.


iPad Pro camera

Apple iPad Pro (2017)

On the Apple iPad Pro, I find the same camera as on the iPhone 7. Thanks to the 12-megapixel camera with optical image stabilization and an aperture of 1.8, I can take razor-sharp photos. In addition, I can take Live Photos with image stabilization and I find a True Tone Flash with 4 LEDs on the iPad Pro. I can record videos in 4K HD. The Pro has a continuous autofocus and the slo-mo videos I create look smooth. My selfies also look sharp thanks to the 7-megapixel front camera.

Camera iPad 2018

Apple iPad (2018)

I can take perfectly fine photos on the Apple iPad (2018), but they can't compare to what I can do with the iPad Pro. I take photos with the 8-megapixel camera with a 2.4 aperture and no optical image stabilization. Taking Live Photos is also possible on the iPad. What I'm missing compared to the iPad Pro is the image stabilization, True Tone Flash, and a wide color capture. I can record videos in 1080p HD. The 1.2-megapixel selfie camera is a big difference compared to the iPad Pro.

Apple Pencil

Apple Pencil iPad Pro

Apple iPad Pro (2017)

The Apple iPad Pro is the first iPad to support the Apple Pencil. The stylus works just a little better on the iPad Pro than on the iPad. Why is that? The iPad Pro screen has ProMotion technology. This ensures that there's barely any delay when I draw on the screen. The screen responds to my touches right away, just like using a real pencil.

Apple Pencil iPad 2018

Apple iPad (2018)

A new feature of the iPad is the support for the Apple Pencil. I first used Apple's stylus on a different model than one from the Pro family. The stylus works well on iPad. When I compare it to the iPad Pro, the iPad Pro is just a little smoother. Using the stylus on the iPad, there's a minute delay. I probably wouldn't have noticed it, though, if I had never used an iPad Pro.

And the rest...

iPad Pro versions

Apple iPad Pro (2017)

I unlock the iPad Pro by pressing the home button with Touch ID. That makes my fingerprint my password. The fingerprint scanner on the iPad Pro is of the 2nd generation, which means I can unlock it a little quicker than the iPad. iPad Pro has 4 dynamic speakers. That means the sound balance adjusts itself based on the iPad's position. When I flip the tablet around, the speakers switch roles.

iPad 2018 versions

Apple iPad (2018)

Just like the iPad Pro, I unlock the iPad (2018) by pressing the home button with Touch ID. The fingerprint scanner on the iPad is one from the 1st generation. As a result, unlocking takes slightly longer than the iPad Pro. Whereas the iPad Pro has 4 speakers, I listen to music on the iPad with 2 speakers. These speakers aren't dynamic. The speakers don't sound bad, but the iPad Pro definitely wins this one.


When I look at power and specs, I can pick 1 deserving winner: the Apple iPad Pro. The iPad Pro offers more features so I can use it for more things. The question is whether I need all those extras. If I don't use all those features, it'd be smarter for me to go for the iPad (2018). Am I a graphic designer or fan of high-end games? In that case, I'd lean more toward the iPad Pro. Still, for everyday use, the iPad (2018) is more than enough for me. On top of that, the price for the most affordable iPad isn't even half of the cheapest iPad Pro. That's a consideration everyone will have to make for themselves.

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