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Apple was originally expected to host a launch event for a series of new products sometime in March, though Coronavirus has seen an end to that flight of fancy. Despite production delays over the past couple of months, Apple has just dropped big updates to two of its most popular products, the iPad Pro and MacBook Air. With events currently off the cards, both updates were unveiled via press release. However, there’s still no word on the long-rumored iPhone 9, which we suspect will be pushed back until a bit later this year.
These 2020 updates are all about providing extra value, with Apple’s top-of-the-line iPad and entry-level MacBook both now hitting a similar price bracket. Both products focus on improved performance and better typing experiences, amongst other things. Apple may have temporarily closed its retail stores, but both new products are available to order immediately from Apple.com and will ship next week.
Here’s everything you need to know about both releases.
2020 iPad Pro
The key additions to this year’s iPad Pro update are an ultrawide camera to match that of the iPhone 11, studio-quality mics that will be a great help to anyone needing to record podcasts or make conference calls, and a fancy depth-sensing LiDAR scanner that Apple says cements the iPad’s lead as the “world’s best device for augmented reality.”
There’s also an all-new Magic Keyboard accessory, thankfully based on Apple’s recent keyboard redesign and not the horrendously volatile design of yesteryear. This keyboard will be available from May 2020 for a whopping $299. It’s also worth noting that full trackpad support is coming next week with iPadOS 13.4, which combined with the keyboard could make this iteration of iPad Pro more of a PC-killer than ever.
Add to that the usual improvements across the board, including an impressive new A12Z Bionic chip at the heart of everything, and you’ve got a stunningly powerful tablet computer. The form factor is the same as ever, with iPad Pro available in 10.5-inch and 12.9-inch variants, starting at $799/£769 and $999/£969 respectively. Read more here.
2020 MacBook Air
Apple has quite a confusing hierarchy of MacBook models, but even before today the Air was the best bet for anyone on a budget. Now it’s an even easier sell, boasting up to 2x faster performance thanks to new quad-core processors, and twice the storage capacity at every tier – starting with 256GB.
Arguably more important than all that is the fact that Apple has finally ditched the terrible butterfly keyboard and added the new scissor-action keyboard seen in last year’s MacBook Pro range. It’s a lot better. MacBook Air starts at $999/£999 for the basic configuration – or $899/£999 if you qualify for Apple’s education discount. Read more here.