Apple iPad Pro vs Microsoft Surface Pro 3: A quick comparison

 A quick comparison

Last week, Apple introduced a brand new ‘large tablet’ dubbed the iPad Pro. At this point, many wondered as to why the company released a tablet when the market for this category is on the decline.

However, the new iPad Pro by Apple might have a few things in common with Microsoft’s Surface Pro 3. For starters, both devices can be used with a cover that doubles as a keyboard, along with a pressure sensitive stylus and also adopt the word, ‘Pro’ in their title.

However, let us check out the iPad Pro along with the Microsoft Surface Pro 3 in a more detailed manner.


Apple’s new iPad Pro packs in a 12.9-inch display along with a 2732 x 2048 pixel resolution. In terms of display, Microsoft’s Surface Pro 3 adopts a slightly smaller 12-inch display and also offers a lower resolution at 2160 x 1440 pixels. The iPad Pro sports dimensions of 12×8.68x.27 inches with a weight of 1.57 pounds while the Surface Pro includes 11.5×7.93x.36 inches and weighs 1.76 pounds. The clear winner here would be the iPad Pro as it adopts a larger display and yet, is lighter in weight.

The Microsoft Surface Pro 3

The Microsoft Surface Pro 3

Chipset, Storage and Software

The Apple iPad Pro is powered by Apple A9X chipset and it is supported by 4 GB of RAM. The company also claimed that the new A9X will be 80 percent faster than all the portable PCs released in 2014. On the other hand, the Surface Pro 3 includes an Intel 4th Generation Core i3 CPU.

In terms of software, the iPad Pro will run on iOS. A report by PC World points out that the app catalog for Apple’s mobile operating system is much deeper than the apps only available through Microsoft’s Windows Store. Apple’s decision still limits users to running apps that are built exclusively for the iPad, or using tools like Amazon’s WorkSpaces virtual desktop client.


The Microsoft Surface Pro 3

The Pro 3 works completely on the company’s latest Windows 10. For debate sake, professionals would mostly opt for this device as iOS would sadly, limit the amount of applications compatible with it.

On the storage front, the iPad Pro comes equipped with 32–128 GB worth of storage while the Surface Pro 3 will offer 64–512 GB of storage. The winner here is certainly Microsoft’s device. It looks like Apple opted for the same storage as it would offer in an iPhone.


The iPad Pro


The iPad Pro comes with an 8MP rear camera along with a 1.2MP front facing camera. On the other hand, the Surface Pro 3 comes with a 5MP front facing as well as rear camera, along with 1080p video recording features.

With professional tablets such as these, the cameras will not really be game changers – but a good front-camera certainly helps with video calling features. Both tablets offer good enough front-facing cameras for video calling. The rear camera on the iPad Pro is impressive if it gives the same output as we had seen with the iPhone 6, but shooting with a 12.9-inch tablet is just odd.


The iPad Pro comes paired with the new Apple Pencil, which is not included with the device, but will be available at a price tag of $99. However, Microsoft includes their Surface Pro Pen with the tablet itself.

The main USP for both the styluses is that it supports palm rejection and pressure sensitivity. In a detailed report by Wired, David Pierce stated the Apple Pencil is better than any stylus he’s ever used by a wide margin. In addition, he said, ” There was almost zero latency, meaning the ink appeared to flow out of the Pencil and not trail half an inch behind.”

Apple Pencil also works with popular apps like Mail, Notes, Procreate and Office 365 for iPad as well. In comparison, the Microsoft Surface Pro 3 is an electromagnetic pen which has 1024 pressure points for added accuracy. It also offers a wider range of connectivity as well. The Surface Pen is also pressure sensitive and features palm block will allows users to rest their hand on the screen as they draw.


The iPad Pro sports a built-in 38.5-watt-hour rechargeable lithium-polymer battery which is claimed to last up to 10 hours while using the web on Wi-Fi, watching videos, listening to music. Even though Microsoft has not mentioned the exact capacity for the battery, the Surface Pro 3 is said to last up to 9 hours of web browsing. In comparison, the iPad Pro does promise a better battery life while using many other features simultaneously.


The iPad Pro

Connectivity In terms of connectivity, the iPad Pro includes a lighting and smart connector whereas, the Surface Pro 3 includes a USB 3.0, microSD card reader, mini display port, cover port and charging port. Pricing And Availability

The iPad Pro will cost you $799 for a 32GB variant while the 128GB variant will cost you $949. The Microsoft Surface Pro 3 is priced at $799 for a 64GB storage variant while, the 128GB variant is priced at $899.

Conclusion Even though Apple looks like it has taken some inspiration from the Surface Pro 3 for its iPad Pro, and also targets the professional market, the combined cost of the iPad Pro along with the Apple Pencil and Smart Keyboard easily cross $1000 – a price at which one can get the MacBook Air which is a much more powerful workhorse.

Microsoft’s Surface Pro 3 on the other hand comes with a desktop OS and with desktop class processor and RAM configuration which is much powerful. But according to international reviews, the Surface Pro 3 battery hovers around the 8-hour mark whereas Apple claims a 10-hour battery life on the iPad Pro. So it is too early to say which of the devices edges out the other in terms of productivity, as each device has something or the other which is better than its rival.