The 11-inch iPad Pro, which debuts in 2022, is a formidable machine. The 11-inch display is incredibly capable, the Apple M2 SoC provides astounding performance for a tablet, and the overall build quality is excellent. But in practice, can the Pro iPad prove to be a reliable daily workhorse? Here is our assessment of the 11-inch iPad Pro (2022).
The 2022 iPad Pro in a nutshell
The 11-inch iPad Pro, which debuts in 2022, represents a powerful technological advancement. Whether you use the iPad to “watch” Netflix and send emails or edit 4K videos with DaVinci Resolve, create AI images with StableDiffusion, and other programs: Because to its small size and great performance, the little tablet is a lot of fun to use. Naturally, there are some disadvantages: When completing strenuous work, the battery in the little shell depletes quite quickly, and the display cannot keep up with the panel of its larger sibling, the iPad Pro 12.9 ” (2022). Moreover, do you believe that the $799 asking price is reasonable?
The 128 GB version costs at least $799, and you can boost the storage for an additional $100 on the tablet. It does appear that the 256 GB version is better suited for regular use. The 512 GB ($1,099), 1 TB ($1,499), and even 2 TB ($1,899) models turn the heat up. Each time there is a $200 add-on for a 5G module. For the sake of comparison, Apple has kept the cost constant from the prior model. By the way, you can also read our evaluation of its predecessor, the iPad Pro 11″ (2021) here.
Apple iPad Pro 11″ (2022) design and build quality
The 2022 iPad Pro looks rather similar to its 2021 predecessor, and that is certainly high praise. Just like last year’s model, the tablet is extremely well-constructed and looks really chic.
What I liked:
- Great workmanship and excellent build materials
- Very handy and light
The iPad Pro’s design doesn’t merit much writing. The tablet has minimal bezels up front and no physical home button, just like all contemporary iPads. The sides of the case remain level, and the edges are soft to the touch. The construction quality is excellent; nothing will creak or break under pressure.
A USB-C port is located at the bottom of the tablet when it is held in portrait orientation. At the upper right corner are the power button (top side) and two distinct volume buttons (right side). With the exception of the Apple logo and the camera island, the rear is entirely matte.
The glossy coating of the Apple logo at the back is not only vulnerable to fingerprints but also to scratches. Despite arriving in a space gray tone, our review device had no discernible scratches after two months. We found that it received two quite noticeable scratches.
Apple iPad Pro 11″ (2022) display
Apart from the form factor, the display is one of the major differences between the 12.9-inch and 11-inch iPad Pro. While the larger version uses an “XDR display” with mini-LED backlight, the 11-inch model makes do with a “normal” LCD panel. However, that is by no means bad.
What I liked:
- Great display with good color reproduction
- Excellent brightness
What I disliked:
- No mini-LED display in the small iPad Pro
- Worse black levels than 12.9-inch model
The 11-inch iPad Pro is more than simply a Netflix-watching tablet. The iPad’s 11-inch LCD panel is far too beautiful to gaze at that. Animations are buttery smooth and color reproduction is great because to the 120 Hz refresh rate. Although we did not do the review in a beer garden during the height of summer, the panel, which Apple claims has a maximum brightness of 600 nits, can nevertheless be read in, for example, the southern Spanish winter sun.
The big iPad Pro, on the other hand, is just marginally superior in the summer. The mini-LED lighting used by the 12.9-inch model’s XDR display allows it to attain 1,000 nits in standard mode and 1,600 nits in bright sunshine. Since it can be dimmed further, the mini-LED panel is also superior in terms of black levels. In the smaller 11-inch iPad Pro, black is only visible as a dark gray color.
Apple iPad Pro 11″ (2022) camera
Even though the 11-inch iPad is rather little, taking images on it is not enjoyable. The selfie camera is excellent for routine video conversations, while the rear camera works well as a “document scanner”. At least in terms of the quality, as its placement to the side in landscape mode is just plain unpleasant.
What I liked:
- Good picture quality during the day
What I disliked:
- Webcam is still positioned awkwardly
- No night mode for photos
What do you mostly use your tablet’s camera for? How you understand this section depends a lot on the response to this question. When held in portrait orientation, the ultra-wide angle camera of the 11-inch iPad Pro is located above the screen. During the day, the selfie camera produces usable quality, and videos with the highest Full HD resolution are also visually appealing. Yet, the (I assume here) iPhone in your pocket is considerably more practical and will capture excellent images.
Unfortunately, using the position in landscape mode—which is primarily used for video calls—becomes problematic. You always feel as though you are staring past the person you are speaking to rather than at them. Moreover, Center Stage is ineffective. In the follow mode, the image is always automatically cropped so that you are in the middle. Although everything mostly works, it can occasionally seem a little chaotic. This is especially true if you move around a lot in front of the camera; eventually, your colleagues will feel queasy.
Apple iPad Pro 11″ (2022) battery
The obvious follow-up inquiry follows the discussion of the high-end hardware found below the hood: What about the battery? The response? It varies. The 11-inch iPad Pro performs admirably for light use with e-mail, movies, and other media. Unfortunately, the 7,538 mAh battery is quickly depleted if the M2 chip is overworked.
What I liked:
- Good battery life for light, everyday use
- Power adapter is included in the box
What I disliked:
- Short battery life when performing demanding tasks
- Slow charging speed
I must admit that it was difficult for me to gauge the battery life. On the one hand, considering the tiny format, the runtime under typical use is actually rather good. For instance, the 2022 iPad Pro with 11 inches requires over four hours of use to see the battery life drop to 50% at maximum display brightness when watching a TV show via WIFI (Apple TV+). Hence, with a moderate display brightness, the manufacturer’s claim of ten hours of browsing or video watching is accurate.
For difficult projects like 4K video editing with Davinci Resolve, the situation is different. The 7,538 mAh battery in the little iPad Pro declines from 100% to 25% in about two hours if I use a reliable diffusion model to continuously generate images. Please be aware that if there isn’t a power outlet nearby on the subsequent international flight, you won’t be able to continue edit films.
What else is there to say about the 11-inch iPad Pro in 2022? You won’t be able to find a lot more portable and versatile workhorse at the same time, whether it comes from Apple or from Samsung tablets (compare), for instance. You should also ask yourself if you truly need all of this power. There aren’t many actual reasons to really purchase the 2022 model other from the new M2 chip. If you’re interested in purchasing a tablet, the 11-inch iPad Pro from 2021 is currently less expensive.
If the tiny iPad Pro is within your price range, you’ll undoubtedly be satisfied with the tablet. Even the “weaker” Pro display is enjoyable to use on a daily basis thanks to the superior build and design. Assuming your normal routine does not involve 4K video editing or similar activities, the performance is amazing and the battery life is likewise excellent.