The new iPads are honest about their RAM… and they have lots of it! What is Apple cooking?

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So Apple just announced the new iPad pros and floor coverings for everyone with the unveiling of the chip inside – instead of being an Apple A14X or something like that, the new iPad pros have the same processor that drives the latest MacBook Airs, Pros, Mac mini and the new iMacs. Apple M1!

It’s a huge deal – true desktop-class CPU in a mobile device. OK, Apple, we’re listening.

Now the first thing that comes to mind is that the power of this M1 chip is wasted. iPadOS has made some progress in recent years to become something of a multi-tasking operating system that allows you to have a kind of laptop-like experience on an iPad. But the general consensus is that it just does not do enough to beat a good computer.

But I think there is a good chance that this will change very, very soon. In fact, the next iPadOS update may introduce another big leap to the user interface. Also, rumors of Final Cut Pro coming to the iPad have come back. Want to know why?

Apple iPad Pro 11-inch (2021) – pre-orders open April 30th

$ 799


Buy at Apple

Apple iPad Pro 12.9-inch (2021) – pre-orders open April 30th

$ 999


Buy at Apple

Apple openly announced the amount of RAM in the iPad Pro (2021) line

“What? That’s a big thing? How so?”

Well, consider this. In the last 14 years with iPhones and iPads, Apple has never talked about RAM and battery capacity on its mobile devices. Not even. It’s always “run all your apps effortlessly” and “battery life all day”. Usually we have to wait for tears or benchmark lists to get the full specifications.

Even now, if you go to Apple’s website and look at the specifications for iPad (2020) or iPad Air (2020), you will not find a single line about RAM.

But the new iPad Pro (2021) line? It is said very openly –

  • 128 GB, 256 GB and 512 GB iPad professionals get 8 GB of RAM
  • 1 TB and 2 TB iPad professionals get 16 GB of RAM

So this is article number 1 – Apple actually treats the iPad Pro (2021) just like it does MacBooks, reveals the amount of RAM and is much more open about the chipset specifications. This means that it no longer considers it a device that is strictly in its “mobile” lineup.

That’s a small thing, I admit. But Apple is not a company that typically breaks with tradition for no reason at all.

It’s actually a significant upgrade

The other thing worth mentioning is that this jump to 16 GB is actually quite large. The iPad Pro (2020) line has 6 GB of RAM. That’s it – across all sizes and storage levels it’s a 6GB chip.

Apple iPad Pro 11-inch (2020)

Apple iPad Pro 11-inch (2020)


See all specifications

While the base 8GB of RAM on the new iPad Pros does not look so much like a leap, it is the 16GB upgrade that makes us scratch our heads. It’s a significant bump in hardware, could it be in preparation for a major software upgrade?

The internet certainly seems to believe that. Rumors that Final Cut Pro will actually be released for the iPad Pro have come up again. We’ve heard this rumor before in 2020, now it’s back in full force, and people are quoting sources inside Apple, pretty sure this will happen at some point in 2021.

I’m still wondering how that would work – will Final Cut Pro only be available for Pro iPads? Will the iPad Pro line 2018 and 2020 the iPad Pro line suffer because they only have 4 GB and 6 GB of RAM respectively? Will pro users be forced to upgrade much faster than they had planned?

My best guess is no – a potential Final Cut Pro for mobile will probably work perfectly on at least the iPad Pro (2020) line, although it will probably be slower than on the new iPad pros. After all, this M1 chip wipes the floor with A12Z silicon according to Apple’s own numbers.

Is that all? Only Final Cut Pro on iPad Pro?

Most likely not. If this turns out to be true, it will most likely only be one of many desktop / portable pro-grade apps coming to the iPad.

But iPadOS also needs an update – it’s very possible that its multitasking features will be updated again, which may justify the need for RAM bumps that the new iPad pros received.

In any case, WWDC 2021 is likely to be a very, very interesting event.

At this point, you may be wondering –

When’s Apple’s WWDC 2021?

The event starts on June 7th and runs through the 11th. As always, we get all the exciting news about new iOS, iPadOS, watchOS and macOS the first day. Hyped?

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