iPad Pro 10.5” Review

Well, it’s been a day and I’ve had some more time to play around with the iPad Pro 10.5″. I typed up yesterday and today’s blogs on the Smart Keyboard. So how do I like it?

Screen

The screen is simply amazing. 120 hz refresh rate is something you have to experience to really understand. Scrolling in Safari is so smooth, and the words don’t judder anymore when you scroll, allowing you to continue reading a little bit while scrolling rather than having to wait for the screen to stop.

It reminds me of the move from regular to Retina screens. Once you see it, you never want to go back. It’s not nearly as pronounced an improvement as Retina screens were, but it’s noticeable and the more you use it, the less you want to look at another screen. Here is hoping that all screens move to this soon.

Smart Keyboard

It’s fine. Not great, but fine. I prefer the larger 12.9″ though. Apple claims this iPad keyboard is “full size” but it’s not really. If you hold up the 12.9 and 10.5 keyboards on top of each other, you’ll see that there is maybe a 1/4″ difference in size from the left edge of the A key to the right edge of the L key, so we’re talking maybe a mm of difference per key, but it’s enough that my large hands have to slow down ever so slightly in order to type.

I refuse to type on glass so I couldn’t really tell you about that experience.

The Smart Keyboard is fine for blogging and on-the-go typing, but I would not want to type up a whole novel on this thing. It’s functional, but not optimal.

I’m also starting to see RSI issues crop up the last couple years, and I’ve had to manage the amount of time on keyboards and mice the last year especially. Too many years of gaming and spending time on computers with poor ergonomics are catching up to me.

I’m already starting to do research on better quality keyboards like the Kenesis Advantage 2, so I may be making the jump to something of that caliber at some point to combat the RSI issues anyway. If that’s the case, the mobile keyboards and even the laptop keyboards will only ever get used when I’m away from the house.

Battery Life

It’s great! What’s more to say? Apple’s worked hard to make sure all devices they sell hit that magical 10 hours of battery life, and they seem content to stay there. Personally I’d love to see more improvements, but it’s fine.

Performance

Again, it’s stellar. No problems with any of the applications I run. Everything is snappy, and opens right up.

Size

This one is a toughy for me. All four of my previous iPads were a different size. I went from the Air, to the Mini, to the Air 2, to the Pro 12.9″ to this 10.5″. Each time I moved I justified my reasons for doing so by citing the irritations I had with previous versions.

The Mini is the perfect size for reading, hands down. Plus it’s super amazing pixel density makes it the best screen I’ve seen till this 120Hz one. But at the time of the mini, I was starting to do more work on my iPad and wanted the screen real estate to work better, so I upgraded.

Then the Pro came out and I was sold. Apple supplied keyboard, large screen, multiple apps at once? It was a dream come true, and it actually came at a decent time when my daughter was heading off to college and I wasn’t going to have a laptop because she was taking mine.

For that reason, the iPad 12.9″ became my only mobile workstation for about six months, until I bought the MacBook Pro 15″. Far superior keyboard, and as a writer, I need that good keyboard.

Now I downgraded again. Why? Well, for one, I have a laptop again, so I don’t rely on my iPad for writing as much as I did in the past, and secondly, and my main gripe about the 12″ one, was reading. It’s simply too big, bulky, and heavy to comfortably read on. I always had to prob it on my tummy while reading and the thin edge actually hurt after a while digging into me like that if you can believe it!

So yeah, after two evenings of reading before bedtime, I love this size and weight much better.

Overall

I love it! There’s not much to say about it. It’s a fantastic size for portability, the screen is beautiful, it’s the fastest iPad ever made, and it just works.

And, it’ll get better in the future when iOS 11 comes out.

Till tomorrow,

Tom

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