iPad Pro 11 vs 12.9: M1 and M2 are both great, but which size should you buy?

Half an 11-inch iPad Pro next to a 12.9-inch iPad Pro half with a contrasting background.


Apple iPad has come a long way since its debut in 2010. Now there Standard iPadlight-weight Air iPadcompact Small iPadand the most likely model, iPadPro. Content creators, digital nomads, and professionals will most likely be drawn to the final member of Apple’s complex line of tablets that can take full advantage of silicon. Pro’s superior M1 or M2, a super-bright display and plenty of software features like Hover mode thanks to premium add-ons like Apple Pencil 2nd Generation.

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If you’ve got your mind set on the iPad Pro, the next question is should you buy it 11 inch model or 12.9 inches?

On paper, the sizes are not too far apart. But if you’ve ever gotten your hands on top-of-the-line tablets — which I recommend you do to get a feel for everything — you’ll know that one is more like a traditional-sized tablet and the other. is a clear large slab. .

Obviously, size is the biggest difference between the two, but I’ve listed some more key reasons below that you should consider before deciding which configuration to buy.


iPad Pro 11 inch

iPad Pro 12.9 inch


11-inch Liquid Retina LCD (2,388 x 1,668) with ProMotion

12.9-inch (2,732 x 2,048) Liquid Retina XDR display with ProMotion


Apple Silicon M1 or M2

Apple Silicon M1 or M2


128GB, 256GB, 512GB, 1TB, 2TB

128GB, 256GB, 512GB, 1TB, 2TB

camera systems

12MP wide, 10MP ultra-wide, 12MP FaceTime TrueDepth

12MP wide, 10MP ultra-wide, 12MP FaceTime TrueDepth


USB-C Thunderbolt/USB-4, Wi-Fi 6, 5G, LTE, Bluetooth

USB-C Thunderbolt/USB-4, Wi-Fi, 5G, LTE, Bluetooth

The battery

Up to 10 hours of video playback

Up to 10 hours of video playback


Space Gray, Silver

Space Gray, Silver

Price range

$799 to $1,899

$1,099 to $2,199

You should buy the 11-inch iPad Pro if…

iPad Pro 11 inch next to iPad Pro 12.9 inch red background.


1. Do you prefer a portable work machine?

Don’t twist it, both iPad Pro sizes are amazingly thin (about 0.25 inches) and can easily fit into any backpack’s sleeve, but the smaller 11-inch one is much easier to hold and about half a pound heavier than the 12.9-inch-inch model.

If you plan to travel with your iPad from home to the office to local coffee shops, the 11-inch Pro’s more portable footprint will be a big consideration.

In fact, if you’re upgrading from an existing iPad, whether it’s an Air, Mini, or vanilla model, you’ll find yourself at home with the 11-inch design. And it M1-based performance will be noticeably better.

2. You want to save at least $300

Is it considered free money if you save yourself from spending more? Either way, on average, choosing the 11-inch iPad Pro over the 12.9-inch model will save you about $300. The main difference between the two — and, spoiler alert for one of the reasons to buy the 12.9-inch model — is the brighter mini LED display on the larger iPad. But is the higher nit count worth the $300 more? The answer really depends on how you’re going to use the tablet, but for most people it’s a resounding “No” answer.

Also: iPad Pro M1 (2021) vs iPad Pro M2 (2022): Worth the upgrade?

Chances are, if you’re buying an iPad, let alone a Pro, you’re also buying one of Apple’s keyboard cases. Whether you are keeping an eye on a Fully functional magic keyboard or one minimal folio caseyou’ll spend $20-$50 less on accessories for the 11-inch model.

You should buy the 12.9-inch iPad Pro if…

Person typing on iPad Pro with Magic Keyboard.


1. Your workflow requires a larger canvas

How do you plan to use iPad Pro? Are you a graphic designer who thrives on Photoshop? Do you edit raw 4K videos on other days of the week? If you consider yourself an expert user, then the larger iPad Pro will serve you better than the smaller alternative. The 12.9-inch model not only gives you a wider screen for visualizing graphics, video timelines, and multi-window layouts, but it’s also noticeably brighter, with 1,600 nits of peak brightness.

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Outstanding image output is thanks to Apple’s Pro Display XDR, a cluster of mini-LEDs that spread underneath the glass to create more dimming areas. Basically, you can expect one of the best performing high dynamic range (HDR) displays on the 12.9-inch iPad Pro.

2. You want a bigger keyboard for typing

Hear me out: Typing experience on any The keyboard case you buy for the 12.9-inch iPad Pro will be better than the 11-inch model. This is because every case will most likely have a larger palm rest and trackpad to cover the 12.9-inch iPad’s display when closed.

Than: Best iPad keyboard case

While the keyboard case will be more expensive for the larger iPad, as mentioned earlier, typing on a keyboard made for the 12.9-inch iPad is less cramped and generally more comfortable. For travel typists, that reason alone can justify the premium.

Frequently asked questions

It’s a question that has been asked since the launch of the iPad, whether it can replace laptops. To answer: Yes, to some extent. Thanks to software improvements and better multitasking on iPadOS, the iPad Pro can more than ever replace a laptop. ZDNET’s Jason Cipriani wrote lots of articles about his iPad experience just do it.

However, you should know that there are still many professional-grade services and programs that require a desktop or laptop computer to run, most of which are not optimized for the iPad’s operating system.

Apple’s non-Pro iPads have gotten more capable over the years thanks to the company’s own silicon integration, but the iPad Pro is still the go-to buy if you’re a pro or a creator.

I recommend any potential shopper to visit a local Apple store and try the lower-end iPad models first, and if none of them meet your work needs, move up to the iPad Pro. .

Both 11-inch and 12.9-inch iPad Pro support 2nd generation Apple Pencil, supposedly Best tool for creating digital content. That said, the best iPad Pro for drawing depends on whether you prefer a more portable canvas or a canvas with more screen real estate. For artists, the 12.9-inch iPad Pro, with its larger and brighter display, will generally serve better, especially if you’re drawing outdoors.

For most students, the 11-inch iPad Pro is the better choice. It’s more portable than the 12.9-inch model and costs $300 less, regardless of storage configuration. Both models support 5G and LTE if you want to use the tablet on the go or your school has unstable Wi-Fi, so the difference to keep in mind here is portability and price.


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