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Apple’s New iPad Pro (M1) Vs. Microsoft Surface Pro 7+ For Business

CRN compares the new M1-powered iPad Pro with Microsoft’s latest productivity-focused Surface Pro tablet

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While rumors had pointed to a launch of new iPad Pro models at Apple’s product event this week, we were still in one for one big surprise with Apple’s new iPad Pro for 2021: the inclusion of the M1 processor. Apple has been busy outfitting many of its Macs with its recently debuted in-house M1 chip, but now, the iPad Pro becomes the first device outside the Mac lineup to feature the M1. That means that Apple is not content to have the M1 only compete with Windows PCs—the company is coming for Microsoft’s Surface Pro line of 2-in-1 tablets, as well. The forthcoming iPad Pro with M1 will go head-to-head with Microsoft’s latest 2-in-1 tablet, the Surface Pro 7+ For Business—which Microsoft says has been “purpose-built” for business users and launched at CES 2021 in January.

Which of the two productivity-focused tablets is best for you? In the following slides, we compare Apple’s new iPad Pro with M1 vs Microsoft’s Surface Pro 7+ For Business on specs and price.



Both Apple’s new iPad Pro and Microsoft’s Surface Pro 7+ For Business offer bright, colorful LCD displays with high resolution.

For the new iPad Pro, 11-inch and 12.9-inch display sizes will continue to be offered. The 12.9-inch model will feature a display upgrade using technology from Apple’s high-end Pro Display XDR. The new “Liquid Retina XDR” display on the 12.9-inch iPad Pro uses mini-LED technology—which deploys more than 10,000 LEDs on the back of the display—which results in a “stunning visual experience that reflects what can be seen in the real world by capturing the brightest highlights and the most subtle details in even the darkest images,” according to Apple. Full-screen brightness can reach up to 1,000 nits, while peak brightness can reach 1,600 nits. Maximum brightness on the 11-inch iPad Pro reaches up to 600 nits. Both of the new iPad Pro models include resolution of 264 pixels per inch.

By comparison, the Surface Pro 7+ For Business falls in between those two models on display size with its 12.3-inch screen. The Surface Pro 7+ For Business offers comparable resolution of 267 pixels per inch for its PixelSense display but lower brightness of 395 nits.

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