All of Apple's iPad Pro (2020) models are getting a major memory upgrade and cool new chip

All of Apple's iPad Pro (2020) models are getting a major memory upgrade and cool new chip
Knowing how Apple usually operates and what the company likes to advertise when unveiling a new smartphone or tablet, it doesn't exactly come as a big surprise that the spec sheet of the latest iPad Pro generation lacks some key details Android device manufacturers would normally put very close to the top of the list.

While it's definitely true that the Cupertino-based tech giant has a knack for developing software that consumes far less memory than the competition, it was also quite disappointing to find out back in 2018 that only the priciest storage configuration of the previous iPad Pro edition got a 6GB RAM count, with all other 11 and 12.9-inch variants settling for a modest-sounding 4 gigs of the good stuff.

Apple remains behind its biggest rivals... on paper

That changes with the freshly announced iPad Pro (2020) duo, which offers 6 gigs of memory across the board, as confirmed by the folks over at 9To5Mac. No more paying north of $1,500 for a 2GB RAM upgrade, as even the entry-level 128GB storage variants of the refreshed iPad Pro 11 and 12.9 reportedly come with a nice memory boost at $799 and $999 respectively.

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Granted, that still doesn't bring Apple's best tablets on par with some of the competition from this particular technical standpoint. Samsung's Galaxy Tab S6, for instance, packs up to 8GB RAM in combination with 256 gigs of internal storage space, while Microsoft's Surface Pro 7 is available in 4, 8, and 16GB RAM configurations. 

Then again, Apple has proven numerous times over the years that specifications are not very important for real-life performance, and we fully expect the iPad Pro (2020) to run more smoothly even in heavy multitasking scenarios than the good but not great Galaxy Tab S6.

One chip revealed, one still undetailed

Another interesting tidbit discovered in the source code of the as-yet-unreleased iOS 13.4 update is a so-called "Ultra Wideband" chip borrowed by the newest iPad Pro 11 and 12.9 variants from the iPhone 11 lineup. This U1 chip is not listed among the tech specs of the iPad Pro (2020) duo, even though it is featured in the "cellular and wireless" section of the official iPhone 11, 11 Pro, and 11 Pro Max specifications.

The mysterious omission might be due to the fact the actual "spatial awareness" functionality enabled on the iPhone 11 trio by the Ultra Wideband chip is not available on the upgraded iPad Pros at launch, although that's still little more than a guess. This spatial awareness technology enhances AirDrop convenience, precisely locating nearby U1-equipped devices so you can share files faster between two different iPhone 11 units, and soon enough, presumably between an iPhone 11 and iPad Pro (2020).

Unfortunately, one major thing that remains under wraps is the new A12Z Bionic processor. All we know about this bad boy is that it incorporates an 8-core CPU and GPU, up from the octa-core CPU and 7-core GPU of the A12X Bionic SoC powering the previous iPad Pro generation. Apple claims the upgraded chipset will deliver the "highest performance ever in an iPad", which sounds about right, as well as superior real-world speed compared to "most PC laptops available today", which might be a bit of a stretch.

Of course, we'll refrain from further judgment until we get a chance to rigorously review the iPad Pro (2020) edition or at least check out some benchmarks that we can then compare to the already impressive performance scores of the 2018 generation.

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