Apple Spring Loaded: iPad Pro with M1 and finally – the AirTags!
A few minutes ago Apple finished its "Spring Loaded" event and introduced new iPads – among other things. In the Pro version, the tablet now also comes with the powerful M1 SoC, which is supposed to lead to performance increases of up to 1,500 percent (compared to what? a rock?). Another surprise: Apple finally also unveiled the long-awaited AirTags.
At 7 p.m. sharp, Apple kicked off its "Spring Loaded!" themed live stream. In the process, the company unveiled new iPad models, new iMacs and ... finally the long awaited AirTags. Follow the jump links to get to your topic of interest.
Antoine and Fabi have written additional articles about the Apple iPad and the AirTags, which you can see linked in the article. But let's start with the product that should be the most exciting for NextPit readers. The new iPho ... I'm kidding! The iPad of course!
New iPads with M1 chip
If you use an iPad as a notebook substitute, you should applaud now! That's because Apple has put its M1 processor into the iPad Pro as well, and has reportedly been able to boost CPU performance by a whopping 75 percent. Both the CPU and GPU use eight processing cores. This allows Apple to increase performance in graphics applications by 1,500 percent – compared to the original iPad.
There's also a big fat upgrade when it comes to storage: Not only has the storage become faster, Apple also offers configurations with up to 2 terabytes (Goodbye, left kidney). The USB-C port now supports Thunderbolt – just like two of the new iMac's ports (more on that later), and the iPad's port is even ready for USB 4.0.
Apple is now venturing into the 5G network with the iPad Pro. This is especially exciting in the US, where mmWave networks already exist. Apple likes to highlight journalists who can now report from all over the world as a usage scenario for 5G.
Speaking of: Let's talk about cameras. Here, Apple is now employing the iPhone's TrueDepth camera for selfies, a 12 megapixel ultra-wide shooter. Because of the 3D sensors and the wide-angle lens, you can now have the camera zoom in on you and follow you in video calls.
Like the Pro Display XDR, the new 12.9-inch iPad features a Liquid Retina XDR display that is illuminated by 10,000 mini LEDs. This once again increases the contrast significantly. Also the brightness is now said to be up to 1,000 nits. But I don't want to anticipate Antoine and his release article about the new iPad that much.
In his article, Antoine also goes into a bit more detail about the updates to the iPad accessories. Familiar names like the Apple Pencil or the MagicKeyboard are of course included. The new iPad Pro with 11-inch display starts from 799 dollars, for the larger model with 12.9-inch display prices will be due from 1,099 dollars.
Apple AirTags start from 29 Dollars
Finally it's here: the AirTag! The trackers are supposed to help you find your key chains, handbags and everything else that you could attach a dollar-coin-sized piece of hardware. There are even some fancy AirTag bag tags made by Hermès.
Finding your items works via the U1 sensor and the FindMy app on your iPhone, among other things. The price for four AirTags is 99 Dollars – a single one comes in at 29 Dollars. For more information, check out our special article on AirTags!
Another new announcement was the new generation of the AppleTV 4K. The streaming box now uses the A12 Bionic chip from the iPhone XS. This allows the AppleTV 4K to play HDR video at high frame rates. If you're using and filming with an Apple iPhone 12 Pro, this is exactly what you should be interested in.
Because yes, with the latest iPhone you can already record HDR footage with 60 fps. Thanks to the improved AirPlay, the recordings then land directly on your AppleTV – without any loss of quality. If you hold the iPhone in your hand, there's another interesting feature.
With the camera on the back of your iPhone, you can calibrate the colors of your TV automatically. To do this, you hold the phone with the back to the TV and start the calibration. The cameras and the software do the rest.
The new AppleTV 4K costs 199 euros with 32 GB of internal storage and will be available from the second half of May. The new Siri Remote will also be available on the HD model in the future. Price? Starting from 179 Dollars.
Apple's all-in-one PCs called iMac have also received an upgrade! The new iMac has a brand new design with new pastel colors, which are quite reminiscent of the transparent colors of the first iMac generations.
As in its new MacBook models, Apple is saying goodbye to processors made by Intel. Instead, an ARM SoC is used, the Apple M1. This is mainly to reduce the size of the components, so that the new iMac is now 50 percent smaller than the previous model. The thickness is only 11.5 millimeters.
The display now measures 24 inches and is even sharper than before. Apple has increased the resolution to 4.5K Retina and the webcam finally gets the long-awaited 1080p upgrade as well. Thanks to the M1 chip's Image Signaling Processor, the quality should be better anyway. The webcam is paired with several microphones, which are supposed to record your voice without background noise thanks to beamforming technology.
Thanks to the M1 SoC, Apple claims to have been able to increase CPU performance by up to 85 percent compared to the previous model. Graphics performance is said to have doubled in comparison. The new architecture is also exciting because you can use iPhone and iPad apps on the computer. You can even continue writing e-mails that you started on your phone on the computer.
On the technical side, there are four USB-C ports on the back, two of which boast Thunderbolt capability. You can use them to connect displays with up to 6K resolution. Wondering why there's no Ethernet port on the back? Well, look inside the power supply, because that's where Apple installed the port. The power supply plugs into the back of the new iMac via a magnetic connector.
In addition to the new iMac, Apple has introduced new Magic Keyboards, which now not only have an emoji button and new colors, but also come with Touch ID in some versions. As for the mouse called Magic Mouse and the external touchpad, there's no news besides new matching colors.
The cheapest iMac will set you back some 1299 Dollars with a 7-core GPU. The model with 8-core GPU will cost you at least 1499 Dollars. You can find all the different configurations on Apple's website.
At a glance: Small details that Apple has presented
Phew, quite a lot to type! Since Apple also presented some other news, which are not sooooo important, I have summarised all the rest for you here:
- The Apple Card gets a new family model in the US, where kids aged 13 and older can use it with a credit limit
- Apple Podcasts gets a redesign and a subscription service
- Ted Lasso gets a second season in July and is available on Apple TV+
- The iPhone 12 now comes in a new color: purple!
What do you think of Apple's new products? Were you surprised by the Spring Loaded event or did it come out exactly as you imagined? Let's talk a bit about it in the comments!