I’m leaving , and that means I have to return the iPad Pro 12.9 I was on loan and – against the advice of my bank account – buy my first new tablet since I was at university several years ago.
Having used iPad Pros for years, I’m used to a tablet with a big screen, powerful processor and futuristic looking design – none of those thick bezels, physical Touch ID buttons and rounded backs of iPads of the past (like the one pictured above) .
However, given how much premium iPads cost, I’m shying away from buying one. Even used, even on sale, iPad Pros are exorbitantly expensive and I just can’t justify buying one.
Even the iPad Air costs a lot for a ‘budget’ iPad Pro. Yes, it has a smaller screen, less storage, and a lower price tag, but it’s still incredibly expensive. I’m also looking at the iPad Air (2020) since it’s a little older, but the base version only has 64GB of storage, and when you go up to 256GB, the tablet gets terribly expensive again.
I was considering opting for an Android tablet (even though many of my most used apps are iOS only), and then the rumors about the new iPad (2022) began.
A new ‘new’ iPad?
Apple usually releases a new entry-level iPad every year, with an older design, smaller screen, and weaker chip (albeit at a lower price) compared to the iPad Pro or Air.
It’s one of those I bought many years ago for university, but thanks to the many weaknesses they have, I didn’t think about buying one this time around.
However, recent rumors suggest that Apple could be planning to completely redesign its more affordable tablet lineup, aligning them with the Pro, Air and Mini lines.
This redesign would likely mean moving the front Touch ID button to the edge of the device, a USB-C port instead of a Lightning one, thinner bezels between the screen and the edge of the device, and a flatter edge.
The change could also bring about an increase in screen size, or perhaps have the same screen dimensions as the 2021 model, but a smaller tablet overall.
A worthy (and tempting?)
This change would solve some of my biggest problems with the entry-level iPad.
A USB-C port would mean faster charging. I could also use peripherals as my external storage without having to buy an adapter. Presumably this change would also mean that the Apple Pencil 2 and newer keyboard accessories would be slate compatible.
If there was an increase in screen size, I could better use the tablet to sketch and take notes with a pen. Sure, I wouldn’t have the 12.9 inches of real estate I’m used to, but every inch counts.
Fortunately, this redesign would not be accompanied by a price increase. I’m not convinced of this though, as upgrading the iPad Air to a newer design came at a higher cost.
I’m not saying that a new and improved entry-level iPad would be a must buy for me, as I would need to see what’s changed and how much it costs. But with the incredibly high price of Apple’s other tablets, I’m hoping the entry-level model can be my savior.