Apple iPad Pro 12.9-inch 2021: Can it Replace a Laptop?

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Ever since Apple introduced their iPad Pro model, users frequently wondered: can it replace a laptop? It made sense: the iPad Pro 12.9-inch comes with a powerful processor, it has a large screen, allowing you to do more on a tablet. Plus, you can purchase a removable keyboard cover for it to function more or less like a computer.

But can the Apple iPad Pro 12.9-inch fully replace a laptop? The opinions are divided. 

Let’s start by taking a closer look at the newest iPad Pro specifications.

2021 Apple iPad Pro 12.9-inch Tablet

The new iPad Pro came out just a few months ago in April, and it made a lot of buzz on the gadget market. One of its most exciting features by far is the addition of the Apple M1 chip. Thanks to that, the tablet is extremely powerful and fast, and the overall user experience is truly seamless. 

Other specifications include:


  • 12.9-inch Liquid Retina XDR mini-LED backlit Multi‑Touch display
  • 2732 x 2048 resolution
  • True Tone and ProMotion technology
  • 1,000,000:1 contrast ratio
  • Fingerprint-resistant anti-reflective coating
  • Apple Pencil 2nd generation support


  • Pro camera system: Wide and Ultra Wide cameras
  • Wide: 12MP, ƒ/1.8 aperture
  • Ultra-wide: 10MP, ƒ/2.4 aperture, and 125-degree field of view
  • 2x optical zoom out / digital zoom up to 5x
  • Five‑element lens (Wide and Ultra-wide)
  • Panorama (up to 63MP)
  • Autofocus with Focus Pixels (Wide)
  • Smart HDR 3
  • Photo geotagging
  • Advanced red-eye correction
  • Auto image stabilization
  • Burst mode

Connectivity and Buttons:

  • Top button and Volume Control
  • Five microphones
  • Four speakers
  • Magnetic connector
  • Thunderbolt/USB 4
  • Smart Connector
  • Nano-SIM tray

Storage Options and RAM:

  • 128GB, 256GB, 512GB, 1TB, and 2TB storage capacity options available
  • 8GB RAM on 128GB through 512GB models
  • 16GB RAM with 1TB and 2TB of storage


  • Face ID, enabled by TrueDepth camera
  • LiDAR Scanner
  • Three-axis gyro
  • Ambient light sensor

Battery Life:

  • 40.88W li-poly rechargeable battery
  • Up to 10 hours of continuous streaming and web surfing

Weight and Dimensions:

  • 12.9-inch model weighs 1.5 lbs
  • 8.46(W) x 11.04(H) x 0.25(D)–in inches 

How exactly can an Apple iPad Pro 12.9 Function as a Laptop

As you can see from the specifications, the tablet is quite large, which can be an issue for some. If you use it strictly as a tablet, you likely do not need such a big display. But artists and digital creators will greatly benefit from what the 12.9-inch iPad Pro has to offer.

Still, the big question is: can this iPad be the primary gadget in your day-to-day life? Hardware-wise, it most certainly can, no doubt about that. But whether the iPad Pro 12.9-inch can replace a laptop or not depends on how you use it. 

For example, if your line of work requires running specific Windows-based apps and making many spreadsheets, a laptop would be better suited for that, or perhaps even a Mac Mini desktop.

However, if you do a lot of media editing and often work on the go, you might just found yourself a powerful laptop replacement. 

 Apple iPad Pro 12.9-inch as a Laptop: Benefits

Some of the most obvious benefits include:

  • Better overall responsiveness
  • Ergonomical but with more power
  • Outstanding battery life
  • Stylus (Apple Pencil) support
  • Thunderbolt for fast files transfer
  • 5G LTE support

 iPad Pro 12.9-inch as a Laptop: Drawbacks

Even with all that power, there are some things the new iPad Pro cannot do. For example:

  • Connecting of the external monitor is often an issue
  • Extremely high price tag, even for base models (starts with $1099)
  • Depending on what you do, the iPadOS can be limiting
  • Must spend extra on the Apple Magic Keyboard for iPad 12.9, trackpad, and mouse

Used Apple iPad Resale Value

There are plenty of ways to get rid of unwanted technology. But if you look for sustainable alternatives both for the planet and your wallet, why not sell your used iPad online? 

The resale value of a used Apple iPad, of course, depends on the model, specs, and overall condition, but here are a few examples for the most popular models:

And if you are wondering how to sell a used iPad for a maximum profit or what are the best places to sell an iPad, please feel free to browse our blog. We have many posts dedicated to the subject.

In Conclusion

At the end of the day, the question of whether the Apple iPad Pro 12.9-inch can replace a laptop depends entirely on how you use your gadgets. And it quite easily becomes the primary device for some, replacing a laptop or even a PC. But those who still wonder might be missing the main point: Apple did not intend for their iPad Pro to be a computer replacement. Instead, it is meant for use in conjunction with other Apple devices. But for an additional gadget in your arsenal, even as powerful as iPad Pro 12.9-inch, the price is not something we can justify. Plus, many would say that the M1 chip on a tablet is overkill. Still, an Apple iPad Pro tablet is unique, with no real competition in hindsight. Yet. 

*Priced on 07/25/2021. Subject to change.

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