Apple's 9.7" iPad Pro discovered to have 2GB of RAM, half that of 12.9" model

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in iPad
The A9X processor in Apple's 9.7-inch iPad Pro is not only slightly slower, but it also features half the RAM of the larger, more expensive 12.9-inch model, initial tests have revealed.


Via Matthew Panzarino.


Benchmarks with the new iPad Pro and the 4-inch iPhone SE were conducted by Matthew Panzarino of TechCrunch, who discovered that both devices feature 2 gigabytes of RAM. The 9.7-inch iPad Pro features a faster A9X processor, while the iPhone SE features the A9 chip.

Notably, with 2 gigabytes on its A9X, the 9.7-inch iPad Pro features the same amount of RAM as its predecessor, the iPad Air 2. While Apple downplays such technical specifications, more RAM enables a number of benefits, including allowing apps and Safari windows to stay open in the background longer. There are costs to more RAM as well, however, such as an impact on battery life.

In a separate test, Pazarino also reaffirmed that the A9X processor in the 9.7-inch iPad Pro runs at a slower speed than the same chip in the 12.9-inch model. AppleInsider was first to note the power disparity earlier Tuesday.

For users who are trying to choose between the 9.7- and 12.9-inch iPad Pro, there's a lot to weigh beyond screen size. In addition to a faster chip and more RAM, the larger version also has a faster USB 3 Lightning port for charging and syncing.

The 9.7-inch model, however, has better cameras, including 12-megapixel iSight camera that matches the iPhone 6s. The display is also revamped with Apple's True Tone technology, which automatically adjusts the screen color based on the user's environment.

Then there's the factor of price: The 9.7-inch model starts at $599 for 32 gigabytes, while the 12.9-inch variant starts at $799 for the same capacity. The 12.9-inch iPad Pro is available now, while preorders for the 9.7-inch version begin Thursday, ahead of a launch next week on March 31.
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Comments

  • Reply 1 of 52
    mac_128mac_128 Posts: 3,369member
    The SE is also said to have 2GB RAM as well, very cool.
    edited March 2016 ai46nolamacguysteveh
  • Reply 2 of 52
    auxioauxio Posts: 1,953member
    sog35 said:
    It will be moving a significantly less amount of pixels.
    ^ this.  The GPU and the CPU share the same memory on the iPad, and so you'll have less RAM being taken up by the GPU when you have a smaller screen.
    ai46nolamacguy
  • Reply 3 of 52
    rogifan_newrogifan_new Posts: 3,752member
    sog35 said:
    Its $200 cheaper.
    It will be moving a significantly less amount of pixels.

    This is like expecting a $35k BMW to have the exact same engine/features as a $60k BMW
    So why does the $399 iPhone SE have the same amount of RAM as the $749 iPhone Plus?
    cash907censoredJanNLroger wadegatorguysingularitycnocbui
  • Reply 4 of 52
    mike1mike1 Posts: 1,809member
    Apple's 9.7" iPad Pro discovered to have 2GB of RAM, 4x that of the iPad2 I will be replacing.
    pmzai46diplicationstevehwilliamlondon
  • Reply 5 of 52
    pmzpmz Posts: 3,433member
    sog35 said:
    Its $200 cheaper.
    It will be moving a significantly less amount of pixels.

    This is like expecting a $35k BMW to have the exact same engine/features as a $60k BMW
    TIL that Apple makes RAM decisions based on cost, and that RAM moves pixels.
    cash907censoredroger wade
  • Reply 6 of 52
    saareksaarek Posts: 1,105member
    sog35 said:
    Its $200 cheaper.
    It will be moving a significantly less amount of pixels.

    This is like expecting a $35k BMW to have the exact same engine/features as a $60k BMW
    So why does the $399 iPhone SE have the same amount of RAM as the $749 iPhone Plus?
    Because 2GB is the absolute minimum a flagship handset should ship with.

    It's disappointing that they decided to go to just 2GB on the iPad Air 3, sorry, iPad Pro.

    It's more than good enough for apps, including the small subset of pro apps that exist right now.

    But hopefully developers will start making really good professional apps and then you'll wish they'd not cheaped out.
    edited March 2016 cash907censoredrogifan_new
  • Reply 7 of 52
    rogifan_newrogifan_new Posts: 3,752member
    auxio said:
    sog35 said:
    It will be moving a significantly less amount of pixels.
    ^ this.  The GPU and the CPU share the same memory on the iPad, and so you'll have less RAM being taken up by the GPU when you have a smaller screen.
    First thing I noticed on my 12.9" iPP was the 4GB RAM. For as concerned about the environment as Apple is they sure don't like to future proof products. No way would I ever buy another iPad if it didn't have 4 (or at least 3) GB RAM.
    cash907censoredcanukstormkoop
  • Reply 8 of 52
    So what exactly is "Pro" about this model, then, besides its price tag? Sorry, but Apple Pencil support isn't enough of a differentiation to preclude Apple from calling it the Air 3. The more I learn about this thing, the less excited about it I am. Less RAM, no USB3 support etc. 
    rogifan_newroger wadekoopcnocbui
  • Reply 9 of 52
    canukstormcanukstorm Posts: 1,780member
    sog35 said:
    mac_128 said:
    The SE is also said to have 2GB RAM as well.
    Just like the 6s.  How is that a surprise?
    Contradictory don't you think? If the $399 iPhone SE has the same amount of RAM as a $749 iPhone 6S, then surely all iPP models should ship with 4GB RAM.   

    By your logic iPhone SE should only get 1GB RAM because it's pushing less pixels than iPhone 6S
    singularity
  • Reply 10 of 52
    rogifan_newrogifan_new Posts: 3,752member
    sog35 said:
    Just like the 6s.  How is that a surprise?
    Contradictory don't you think? If the $399 iPhone SE has the same amount of RAM as a $749 iPhone 6S, then surely all iPP models should ship with 4GB RAM.   

    By your logic iPhone SE should only get 1GB RAM because it's pushing less pixels than iPhone 6S
    Very disappointing decision. 
  • Reply 11 of 52
    dbeatsdbeats Posts: 26member

    Those who base their opinions on fancy specs vs. a good user experience deserve to have neither. 
    ai46cornchipRayz2016
  • Reply 12 of 52
    This makes the Air 2 look better to me now.
  • Reply 13 of 52
    hmlongcohmlongco Posts: 166member
    Apple's web site says both models support the USB-3 camera adaptor...
  • Reply 14 of 52
    rogifan_newrogifan_new Posts: 3,752member
    dbeats said:

    Those who base their opinions on fancy specs vs. a good user experience deserve to have neither. 
    RAM is not a fancy spec and more RAM is definitely noticible on my iPP. Safari tabs hardly ever reload and split view and slide over are buttery smooth all the time.
    roger wadesirlance99
  • Reply 15 of 52
    JanNLJanNL Posts: 257member
    This makes the Air 2 look better to me now.
    +1 As a replacement for an iPad Air I was waiting for the new Pro. But with a price difference of almost $250 in The Netherlands (and then only 32GB in the Pro instead of 64GB in the Air 2), I'm not so sure...
  • Reply 16 of 52
    rogifan_newrogifan_new Posts: 3,752member
    sog35 said:
    RAM is not a fancy spec and more RAM is definitely noticible on my iPP. Safari tabs hardly ever reload and split view and slide over are buttery smooth all the time.
    Then why are you crying like a little baby?  Keep your iPP and have a happy life.  Why the hell are you even concerned about the 9.7?  

    Its pretty clear the 9.7 wasn't built for you.
    Maybe because I care about Apple customers having the best UX. I have a 9.7" iPad Air 2 and I can definitely notice the extra RAM in my iPP. It's a much better UX. Unfortunately with marketing and bean counters running the show margins, price points and upselling are top priorities. The complete opposite of the values Jony Ive describes, but then I assume he has very little involvement in pricing & specs.
    koopfreshmaker
  • Reply 17 of 52
    JanNLJanNL Posts: 257member
    sog35 said:
    jannl said:
    This makes the Air 2 look better to me now.
    +1 As a replacement for an iPad Air I was waiting for the new Pro. But with a price difference of almost $250 in The Netherlands (and then only 32GB in the Pro instead of 64GB in the Air 2), I'm not so sure...
    How long do you keep your iPads?  4 years? 5 years?

    If you keep your iPad's for 3 years we are talking 23 cents a day.  I mean really?  That's about $7 a month for the iPad Pro vs Air2. 

    I've regretted buying lower tier stuff many many times.  I've never regretting buying high quality stuff, ever.

  • Reply 18 of 52
    rogifan_newrogifan_new Posts: 3,752member
    sog35 said:
    Maybe because I care about Apple customers having the best UX. I have a 9.7" iPad Air 2 and I can definitely notice the extra RAM in my iPP. It's a much better UX. Unfortunately with marketing and bean counters running the show margins, price points and upselling are top priorities. The complete opposite of the values Jony Ive describes, but then I assume he has very little involvement in pricing & specs.
    are you sure its the RAM that is causing the Air2 to be slower?  Or could it be the CPU?

    From the early hands on impression I have not read anything to say the 9.7 Pro is significantly slower than the 12.9.
    I know safari tabs and apps refresh much more frequently on the Air 2 than on my iPP. And I would imagine pro-worthy apps and high-end games would welcome the extra RAM. This is just Apple being stingy. Jony Ive and the designers and engineers might be working on the future but unfortunately it's marketing and bean counters that make the final decisions on what configuration is sold to the public. Shame really.
    koop
  • Reply 19 of 52
    rogifan_newrogifan_new Posts: 3,752member
    sog35 said:
    I know safari tabs and apps refresh much more frequently on the Air 2 than on my iPP. And I would imagine pro-worthy apps and high-end games would welcome the extra RAM. This is just Apple being stingy. Jony Ive and the designers and engineers might be working on the future but unfortunately it's marketing and bean counters that make the final decisions on what configuration is sold to the public. Shame really.
    bean counters? So why is Apple selling a $399 phone?  Just stop.

    You are way out of your depth here. Sorry but you are not qualified to make these type of decisions for a $600 billion company.
    Yes it makes no sense. The SE is a very compelling phone for the price. I think it will sell very well. If the 9.7" Pro had 3 or 4 GB RAM and support for USB 3 I think it would easily become the best selling iPad. As it is now people will just wait for v2.
    entropyskoopcanukstorm
  • Reply 20 of 52
    mjtomlinmjtomlin Posts: 1,793member
    The A9 has the memory on the SoC, which explains why the iPhone SE has the same memory as the iPhone 6s. To make room for the extra processing cores, the X variants have the memory moved to their own dedicated silicon. I'm also pretty sure the 9.7" Pro required them to design a smaller motherboard, meaning less room for any other chips, including any extra memory.

    If you think you need 4GB, get the 12.9" iPad. If you're more concerned about weight and size, get the 9.7". While I don't agree with Apple's latest naming conventions, people need to stop getting hung up on it, the whining on these boards is juvenile. I have an iPhone 6 with 1GB of memory and I currently have 7 safari tabs open and about 10 apps open... there's no reloading of web pages and absolutely no lag when switching apps.
    nolamacguydiplication
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