iPad Pro vs iPad Air

iPad Air vs iPad Pro | Here’s the best pick for you

iPad Air vs iPad Pro | Here’s the best pick for you

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  • Post last modified:February 25, 2023
  • Post category:Tech
  • Post comments:1 Comment
  • Reading time:11 mins read
iPad air and iPad pro next to each other

Apple undoubtedly makes the best tablets in the world, period! Their software integration combined with their cutting-edge designs makes the iPad the best in its class. In this article we are going to dive deep on the question that has been disturbing a lot of people lately. Should you get the iPad pro 11” or the iPad Air 4.

As you are all aware, Apple did a complete revamp of the Ipad air last year. They finally gave it a near edge-to-edge screen to match it with its bigger brothers, the Ipad pro 11” and the 12”. Apart from the M1 chip in the Ipad pro 11”,is there any notable difference between the two and does the M1 chip make that much of a difference? We are going to find out in this article.


iPad Air 4iPad Pro 11″
Materials – Glass front, Aluminum back, Aluminum FrameMaterials – Glass front, Aluminum back, Aluminum frame
Display type – Liquid Retina IPSDisplay type- Liquid Retina IPS
Max Brightness – 500 nitsMax brightness – 600 nits
Refresh rate – 60 HzRefresh rate – 120 Hz
Display size – 10.9 inchesDisplay Size – 11 inches
ChipSet – A14 bionic chipChipSet – Apple M1
RAM – 4GB across the boardRAM – 8GB/ 16GB
Storage – 64 GB/ 256GBStorage – 128GB/ 256GB/512GB
Main camera – 12MP f/1.8 wide .Wide Camera – 12 MP, f/1.8
Ultra wide camera – 10 MP, f/2.4, 125˚
Depth camera/ LIDAR – Present
Selfie Camera – 7MPSelfie camera – 12 MP, f/2.4, 122˚ (Ultrawide)
Battery Capacity – 7606mAhBattery Capacity – 7538mAh
Security – Fingerprint (top mounted)Security – Face ID
Stylus Support – YesStylus support – Yes
Colors -Space Gray, Silver, Rose Gold, Green, Sky BlueColors – Silver, Space Gray
Starting price – $599Starting Price – $799

Performance and storage

iPad Pro 11" with the Apple pen

As you have noticed from the above specs, the iPad Pro 11” blows the iPad air 4 out of the water. First of all the iPad Pro tops out at 16GB RAM and 2TB storage which is more than enough even for most PC users. In addition to that, the iPad Pro comes with the same M1 chip which is found in the Macbook series.

Although on paper all this is quite mind blowing, how does this apply in real life. First of all, the M1 chip is by far the best ARM chip we’ve seen in a long time. This integrated chip embarrassed most x86 chips from intel and AMD and when we finally heard that it was coming to the iPad Pro we new that the iPad was finally ready to be laptop replacement, but we were wrong.

See the hardware is all good but the iPad OS is not yet ready to harness all the power that the M1 has. So if you still have an older iPad Pro or for that matter the iPad Air 4, you are not missing out on a lot. Another key point to mention is that the 16GB is not worth spending the extra dollars on. This is because most Apps have been capped at a certain RAM limit.

iPad Pro 11" on a table

For example, take an app like procreate. Procreate caps the amount of RAM that the app needs regardless of the amount in the actual iPad. Some users claim that Procreate caps it at 5GB so the extra 11GB is actually not being utilized. 8GB for the iPad pro seems to be the sweet spot. As for the 4GB on the iPad Air 4, it is sufficient enough for most tasks.


iPad Air touch id

Security is a major concern for most people and no other company cares about your security the way Apple does. You can consider both of these devices well secured but they each use different technologies to unlock your device. The iPad Air 4 uses Fingerprint mechanism while the iPad Pro 11” uses Face ID. Both of these methods are effective and secure enough but it all boils down to personal preferences.

Face ID has been Apple’s go to even in their premium iPhones and it is one of the main reason the iPhone still has a notch. Face ID utilizes an infrared sensor so you don’t have to worry even if you are in the dark. It will still unlock. One of the worrying issues about face ID is whether it works while wearing a face mask.

iPad Pro front sensors

The answer is yes and no. Apple found a work around to this problem but there is a catch. You need an Apple watch. This is the same concept used to login to your mac using your Apple watch. That is the only downside that I can find to face ID. Other than this, Face ID works like a charm.

On the other hand, Finger print unlock is just as good. You just place your finger and boom, your iPad unlocks. There has been no problem with Finger print unlock and some users actually prefer it to face ID. Of course the security mechanism is not enough of a reason to choose between the two but it is a factor worth considering.


iPad Pro 11" on a table

Some people consider the camera quality in an iPad to be essential while other people don’t mind. The good news is that both devices come with sufficient enough cameras for basic tasks like document scanning. But if you want more than decent enough, the iPad pro is definitely the go to. The Camera system in the iPad pro is much more advanced with features you will never need in a tablet.

The iPad pro comes with a triple camera setup; a 12 MP wide camera, a 10MP ultra-wide camera and a LIDAR depth sensor. For those who don’t know what a LIDAR scanner is here is a simple to understand explanation. LIDAR stands for light detection and ranging. Basically, the infrared light it emits bounces off surfaces to give an accurate 3D render of the surroundings based on precise distance that it measures. It has various functions mostly in the world of augmented reality. But in a camera system it mainly helps in focus accuracy.

iPad Pro screen

On the contrary, the iPad Air 4 comes only with one 12MP wide camera. Another main difference between the two camera systems can be found in the front facing camera. The iPad air 4 comes with a 7MP standard camera while the iPad Pro 11” comes with a 12MP ultra-wide camera. What separates these two selfie cameras is a feature called center stage which was recently released by Apple. Since most people have been frequently having video conferencing at home, Apple decided to improve on this front facing camera with center stage. Centre stage main focus is to keep the subject in front of the camera in frame. For example, if you move while in a video conference, the camera tends to follow you in order to keep you in frame. It is a very handy feature which most people are actually enjoying but of course it is not essential.

Value and price

iPad Pro with a cover

Both the iPad air 4 and the iPad pro 11” provide a good value for your money and it all boils down to your personal preferences. If you prefer a superior camera system and may be just a little bit of more performance then the iPad pro 11” is the right pick for you. If you don’t mind either of those features and you are really on a tight budget, then the iPad Air 4 is definitely for you. The iPad Pro has an MSRP starting at $799 while the iPad Air 4 starts at $599.

Final thoughts

iPad Air screen

Both of these devices are just amazing. For those in the Apple ecosystem, no other tablet is more suitable than an iPad, period! Even if you are setting your toes into the Apple ecosystem, the iPad is still a great pick. In my opinion, the iPad Air 4 is just as good as the iPad Pro 11” at a lower cost. It all boils down to personal preferences. Which one would you pick?

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