Battery Life

Even with a big screen and blistering performance, battery life remains all sorts of solid

For users who lament the existence of phones that trade battery life for compact sizes on a daily basis, tablets can be a godsend, and even with the 10.5-inch iPad Pro measuring in as thin as it does, Apple still finds room to squeeze in a decently sized 8,100mAh battery.

With our custom battery-endurance test, the same we use to evaluate smartphones, the iPad Pro gave us about ten-and-a-half hours of continuous screen-on time. That's pretty good by most standards, and especially so when you consider the sheer surface area of screen must be illuminated that whole time.

Apple really seems to have decided on bringing parity to its tablet lineup, and though we'll be discussing the 12.9-inch iPad Pro in a separate review, it's interesting to note that with its larger battery (and correspondingly larger screen), that tablet enjoys roughly similar battery life to this, its smaller cousin.

Battery life may be no issue for the iPad, but recharging is a different story altogether. While you wouldn't be wrong to expect a smartphone – even one that pulls 10 hours of battery life – to charge in two hours or less, this iPad takes about three-and-a-half hours with its included charger to restore its battery to capacity. For tablets, that's not horrible, but make sure you've got the time to kill.

Battery life (hours) Higher is better
Apple iPad Pro 10.5-inch 10h 38 min (Excellent)
Apple iPad Pro 9.7-inch 9h 55 min (Excellent)
Apple iPad Air 2 7h 27 min (Good)
Charging time (minutes) Lower is better
Apple iPad Pro 10.5-inch 204
Apple iPad Pro 9.7-inch 215


Apple strikes a very attractive balance with the new 10.5-inch iPad Pro. The larger screen size over the typical 9.7-inch variety gives you a tad more elbow room than you'd have on a smaller tablet, making things like reading text-dense websites slightly more comfortable. The bigger deal here is that Apple was able to give us such a screen without making the tablet's dimensions significantly larger than before.

But really, the screen size isn't the big draw here – we're just glad there's a smaller option than the 12.9-inch iPad Pro, and whether that spells 10.5 inches or 9.7 inches is mostly immaterial. This tablet succeeds because of how high-quality the rest of its hardware is.

The display looks great and is bright enough for even outdoor usage. The speakers sound fantastic, and will make you wonder how you ever settled for less. Battery life will easily stretch throughout a full day, even if recharge times are a little lengthy. And the tablet's performance is literally second-to-none, outclassing every other mobile device we've looked at.

You can pay a lot for a fully-equipped iPad Pro, adding on extra storage, picking up cellular connectivity, and pairing the tablet with its stylus and keyboard accessories. But even if you opt for the simplest configuration Apple sells, you're still going to get a fantastically well-outfitted tablet for a price that is still relatively competitive. And while you're stuck with your choices of flash space and radio, you can always circle back around and add even more capability to the tablet with those accessories at a future date.

If you feel that a larger screen would add an extra dimension of productivity to your tablet-using experience, do think about dropping the extra $150 on the 12.9-inch iPad Pro. But if you all you want is a really well-rounded tablet that delivers one of the best overall experiences we've seen from a mobile device in a long while, you won't go wrong with the 10.5-inch iPad Pro.


  • Big, beautiful screen (but not TOO big)
  • Bassy, rich sound
  • Day-long battery life
  • Laptop-competitive performance
  • Great camera for when you need it


  • With accessories, starts getting expensive, fast
  • Even with split-screen, iOS doesn't feel optimized for tablets
  • Audio recording when shooting video doesn't sound great

PhoneArena Rating:




1. peace247 unregistered

This thing should get atleast 9/10.....

6. combatmedic870

Posts: 984; Member since: Sep 02, 2015

OMG.... Apple has be disgraced!!! Phone arena is over

12. maherk

Posts: 6873; Member since: Feb 10, 2012

I agree, butnI guess PA wanted to sabe themselves from the backlash of giving another 9+ score. This should easily get 9/10, it's hands down the best tablet on the market.

18. maherk

Posts: 6873; Member since: Feb 10, 2012

but I* save** another Apple product***

57. yann

Posts: 614; Member since: Jul 15, 2010

You are dummy fanboy. How is the best tablet on the market? With useless OS? Even PA give con: "Even with split-screen, iOS doesn't feel optimized for tablets". What you will do on that expensive $hit? With "nice" bezels? Buy yourself Surface and at least you will have working OS. Buy huge hump iPhone 8 or X or whatever. Because it is Apple product.

60. Arch_Fiend

Posts: 3951; Member since: Oct 03, 2015

It isn't the best, never will be unless the surface pro is somehow not a tablet anymore.

19. Bankz

Posts: 2542; Member since: Apr 08, 2016

This clearly a 9+/10 device.

22. maple_mak

Posts: 953; Member since: Dec 18, 2013

Triggered! LOL

24. AmashAziz

Posts: 2923; Member since: Jun 30, 2014

I guess even the most, sane, android fan will be close to triggered too. Because this iPad does really deserve atleast a 9/10. Nothing beats it overall, in my opinion.

40. trojan_horse

Posts: 5868; Member since: May 06, 2016

"Nothing beats it overall, in my opinion." Surface Pro 4 says HELLO!

50. AmashAziz

Posts: 2923; Member since: Jun 30, 2014

First of all, what does "in my opinion" mean? And second of all, I knew some genius would mention the Surface Pro 4 without realising that it's running a desktop OS on desktop-grade hardware. It's essentially a laptop that can act as a tablet to some extent, thereby a hybrid. So it's not a direct rival to the iPad Pro which is a mobile device. I hope this would help you clear your mind.

53. IT-Engineer

Posts: 543; Member since: Feb 26, 2015

Hey Genius, you can compare it with the Surface Pro 4 since it has the same price tag.

54. AmashAziz

Posts: 2923; Member since: Jun 30, 2014

Technically, you can compare anything; the brain makes it possible. But our sense tells that it would be stupid to declare one as a rival of the second when both are based on different platforms. Just having the same price doesn't mean they both are direct rivals when looking at them overall. However, if one looks at specific things such as screen:body, then your statement is correct. But not otherwise. Sure, each of them can do certain tasks that the other is designed for in a better way. For example, the iPad Pro can let you make presentations like the Surface Pro 4. But can it reach the same level of productivity in that regard? Of course not!. That's ONE of the reasons why both aren't direct rivals. Because by your logic, can I compare a $4000 car with a new iMac 5k? Absolutely. But, when looking at them overall, does the comparison seem sensible?

55. IT-Engineer

Posts: 543; Member since: Feb 26, 2015

Nope, that is a bad example you gave there. We are talking about tablets. Both are tablets, one running full Desktop OS, the other is just running IOS. Sure it looks good, and is better buy than all of the android tablets out there. But the moment you price it as the Surface Pro 4 which is also a tablet, then you need to compare it with it. That is just pure logic. Therefor if i wanna buy a good tablet without paying the hefty price of a Surface, i'll go with the normal IPAD, but i would never pay for this over grown tablet the same price as the surface, then i'll go and pick up a surface pro 4 tablet. That is common sense.

56. AmashAziz

Posts: 2923; Member since: Jun 30, 2014

The reason I gave that 'bad example'was to show that your logic cannot be applied anywhere. Even though both can act as tablets, both are largely different due to the hardware and software. As I already stated, both can do each other's work but each one is suited for different purposes, better. And iOS and WIndows have drastic differences aside from being for different platforms. And yes, it is sensible to compare them in daily life when you wanna know which is a better buy for the price while considering your own needs at the same time. But, when you look at them without considering yourselves, then you will know that they aren't direct rivals. What you said is right, as it takes into consideration the user. But I doing quite the opposite, that's why my statements might seem incorrect to you. Though tey don't seem as such to me.

58. yann

Posts: 614; Member since: Jul 15, 2010

Even Surface Pro 3 is better than this useless cripple OS device.

32. Luuthian

Posts: 332; Member since: Sep 09, 2011

This probably won’t happen but I’d hope they re-review it for iOS 11. I’m using the beta on the brand new 12.9” and even in beta format it’s a massive, massive upgrade (and surprisingly stable). With the right accessories it really can replace a laptop now, for anyone who isn’t a power user anyways. Only thing I miss is my emulators.

33. nctx77

Posts: 2540; Member since: Sep 03, 2013

I didn't read the article, but I bet they didn't give it a 9 because they reviewed it as a Laptop replacement and not a tablet. 8.8 isn't a bad score though.

59. UnlimitedSkye03

Posts: 293; Member since: Apr 27, 2012

I'm not an apple fan but I agree this new iPad deserves atleast a 9/10. It looks like a pretty great device, and this is the only iPad that made me really think of getting one, and I really might get one, not as a laptop replacement though but as a multimedia device and a drawing tablet.

2. LGV20

Posts: 21; Member since: May 22, 2017

Yeah, this deserves 9 and iPhone 7 deserves 6.5 instead...

14. AmashAziz

Posts: 2923; Member since: Jun 30, 2014

And LGV20 deserves -10/10

20. Bankz

Posts: 2542; Member since: Apr 08, 2016

Lol, u just ruin him.

3. Papa_Ji

Posts: 848; Member since: Jun 27, 2016

Still it can't beat Tab S3 it's look, feel, productivity and value... iPads display still look white washed in comparison to AMOLED on tab s3...... Basically it's same iCrap with 120Hz display wrapped in aluminium foil.

8. maherk

Posts: 6873; Member since: Feb 10, 2012

I'm sorry, but apart from the Amoled panel and the free S-pen, this is way better than the Tab S3, and as much as I prefer anything Android, I would gladly take this over the Tab S3.

15. AmashAziz

Posts: 2923; Member since: Jun 30, 2014

please ignore papa-ji; he's a troll. Btw papa-ji in english means 'dad'. Just so you guys know

48. PapaJi

Posts: 60; Member since: May 15, 2016

Beta apny papa ki baat ko ignore nhi krty.... Madrch*d pakistani.

49. PapaJi

Posts: 60; Member since: May 15, 2016

Think different ...think more than one PAPA Kashmir to mily ga nhi ek or papa hy ly ly...

51. AmashAziz

Posts: 2923; Member since: Jun 30, 2014

Hah! Ignorant troll!!

10. pixel_ftw

Posts: 84; Member since: Jun 19, 2017

It can beat Tab S3 even in its sleep. Android tablets are crap compared to ipad and surface. With ios 11 it'll be even more productive.

47. Papa_Ji

Posts: 848; Member since: Jun 27, 2016

The display (mostly for media) is the most important part of a tablet ....Tab S3's AMOLED capable of HDR video playback for true-to-life view and it's quad-speaker system by AKG/HARMAN can easily blow any of the iPad out.. Fast charging , Micro SD card support , S Pen , better battery backup and more premium built with best look and feel is a plus for me. Yes, Windows powered Galaxy Book and surface are best overall tablets.... iPad feels lamb, for both productivity and media.

* Some comments have been hidden, because they don't meet the discussions rules.

iPad Pro 10.5-inch
  • Display 10.5" 1668 x 2224 pixels
  • Camera 12 MP / 7 MP front
  • Processor Apple A10X Fusion, Hexa-core, 2380 MHz
  • Storage 512 GB
  • Battery 8134 mAh

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