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Apple unveils 9.7-inch version of the iPad Pro

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Apple has expanded its popular iPad Pro range to now include the most popular 9.7-inch screen size which also inherits its features including the ability to write on the Retina Display with the Apple Pencil.

The 9.7-inch iPad has always been the most popular size with more than 200 million sold since it was introduced back in 2010.

The iPad Pro – already available in the 12.9-inch screen size – will now include the 9.7-inch version which weighs less than 500g and is just 6.1mm thick.

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It will be available to pre-order from March 24 and go on sale on March 31.

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Onboard the new iPad Pro is the pro Retina display which makes it possible for users to write and draw on the screen with Apple Pencil.

It is powered by the A9X processor which provides the sort of performance that can make the iPad Pro a laptop replacement.

Apple is positioning the iPad Pro – the 12.9-inch and 9.7-inch versions – to take on devices like Microsoft’s Surface Pro 4 tablet which is making inroads in the high-powered tablet category.

The iPad Pro has a new TrueTone display which uses sensors to adjust the screen’s white balance to match the light around you for a more natural viewing experience.

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Speaking of the display, it is also 25 per cent brighter and 40 per cent less reflective than the iPad Air 2.

On the audio side, the new 9.7-inch iPad Pro has a four speaker configuration that automatically adjusts to suit the way you’re holding it. And it also has twice the volume of the iPad Air 2.

It also has a 12-megapixel camera, a 5-megapixel front camera.

Accessories for the new 9.7-inch model of the iPad Pro includes the Apple Pencil and the Smart Keyboard so you can type on a physical keyboard like you would with a laptop.

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There is also a larger 256GB capacity version of the iPad Pro in both the 9.7-inch and 12.9-inch models.

The iPad Pro will be available in silver, space grey, gold and rose gold.

The iPad Air 2 will still be available in 16GB and 64GB versions.

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The iPad Pro 9.7-inch will be priced at $899 (32GB wi-fi only), $1,099 (32GB wi-fi + cellular), $1,149 (128GB wi-fi only), $1,349 (128GB wi-fi + cellular) and $1,399 (256GB wi-fi only) and $1,599 (256GB wi-fi + cellular).

The iPad Pro 12.9-inch version will be priced at $1,249 (32GB wi-fi only), $1,499 (128GB wi-fi only), $1,699 (128GB wi-fi + cellular), $1,749 (256GB wi-fi only) and $1,949 (256GB wi-fi + cellular).