If you are in the market for a hybrid tablet, the Microsoft Surface Pro 4 and Apple iPad Pro are the best options at the moment. Both of them are 2-in-1 devices but which one is the better laptop replacement? Let’s take a look at the comparison.
Design & Display
The iPad Pro looks like a massive iPad, it measures 12 x 8.68 x 0.27 inches and weighs 1.57 lbs. The 12.9-inch screen has a resolution of 2732 x 2048 pixels. On the other hand, the Surface Pro features a slightly smaller 12.3-inch screen with the resolution of 2736 x 1824 pixels. It measures 11.5 x 7.93 x 0.33 inches and it is a little heavier at 1.73 lbs. Both screens are excellent.
The iPad Pro uses an all-around aluminum casing while the Surface Pro 4’s exterior is made of magnesium. The iPad Pro is thinner and lighter but it doesn’t have a built-in kickstand like the Surface, so you won’t be able to prop it up without an accessory.
Besides, the Surface has a much better connectivity with a USB 3.0 port, a microSD card reader, and a MiniDisplay port while the iPad includes just one lightning port. That means you can easily hook up your external hard drive, mouse, or connect to large screens easily.
The iPad Pro is powered by the Apple A9X processor with 4 GB of RAM and 32-128 GB of storage. The lowest-specced Surface Pro 4 runs on the Intel Core M3 with 4 GB of RAM and 128 GB of storage, or you can upgrade to the Intel i7 processor with 16 GB of RAM and 256 GB of storage. The iPad Pro can be more powerful than the cheapest Surface but it can’t compete with the mid-range one. Besides, you will have to pay extra $150 to get the same storage of 128GB.
The Surface Pro 4 offers a lot more in its accessories. Apart from the built-in kickstand, you will also have the free Surface Pen inside the box and it can be easily attached to the side of your device. On the other hand, you will have to spend extra $99 for the Apple Pencil if you use iPad Pro. The Apple Pencil has lower levels of pressure sensitivity but it has some advantages like low latency and special sensors to detect if you’re holding it at an angle, then it will adjust your drawing accordingly.
The Type Cover keyboard for Surface is much more robust than the Apple’s Smart Keyboard. The Type Cover is $40 cheaper but it features a more spacious layout, backlit keyboard, and built-in touchpad.
It is unfair to compare the software of the 2 devices because they are in 2 different leagues. While the Surface runs on the powerful Windows 10 desktop OS, the iPad Pro still uses the iOS 9 which was designed for mobile devices. Although there’ve been a lot of improvements on iOS like Split View multitasking feature or touch-friendly tablet apps, its productivity just can’t compete with Windows 10. Besides, many professional software and games are available on Windows only, you can find some on Apple’s App Store but the mobile versions often have limited functions. The Surface is the absolute winner in this aspect.
In terms of battery capacity, iPad Pro’s battery is almost twice bigger than Surface’s (10,307 mAh compared to 5,087 mAh). That explains the better battery life on iPad Pro. It lasts 10 hours while the Surface lasts 9 hours for mixed used.
When it comes to price, many people thought that the iPad Pro is cheaper because its starting price is $799 while the Surface’s price starts at $899. However, there are some hidden costs that you might not be aware of. The iPad is actually much more expensive after you upgrade to the same storage option, buy Apple Pencil and Smart Keyboard.
The Surface Pro 4 is the clear winner in the competition. However, the iPad Pro still has its own market. If you are a fan of Apple products and want a sleek device with slightly better battery, the iPad Pro is a good option for you. In case you want a laptop or desktop replacement, the Surface Pro 4 is a much better choice. Learn more about the Microsoft Surface 4 at Harvey Norman.