New iPad Pro Harder, Better, Faster, Cheaper Than Surface Pro 4

When Apple introduced its latest iPad Pro tablets, it promised improved performance.

Here’s what Apple had to say when they introduced the updated iPad Pro tablets:

The powerful new 64-bit A10X Fusion chip provides performance that is faster than most PC laptops shipping today, so tackling complex tasks like editing photos and 4K video, rendering 3D images or playing games feels effortless.

A six-core CPU and 12-core GPU deliver up to 30 percent faster CPU performance and 40 percent faster graphics performance than the industry-leading A9X chip, while delivering all-day battery life.

Now that independent benchmarks are starting appear, they show that the updated iPad Pro tablets are not just faster than their predecessors, but that their CPU performance is solidly in laptop territory. In fact, Geekbench processor benchmarking shows that the entry level iPad Pro ($649) bests the Microsoft’s mid-range Surface Pro ($1,199) by more than 35%

Here are the 64-bit Geekbench results for the Surface Pro 4 i5:

Single-core performance is about 3250, and multi-core performance about 6775.

Geekbench scores for the new iPad Pro tablets show it besting both the Surface Pro’s single-core and multi-core processor scores:

Some readers may question whether this is a valid comparison, since the Surface Pro 4 is aging and because CPU benchmarks don’t tell the whole story.

If you want a slim laptop that can double as a tablet, the Surface Pro 4 or other Windows 10 hybrids can run traditional laptop applications and support traditional laptop workflows. End of story.

If you want a tablet that offers laptop-level performance, though, this year’s iPad Pro tablets do just that.

They offer better multi-touch performance, better pencil control, better processor performance, better battery life and a better developer ecosystem – which means that the iPad platform offers an impressive selection of mobile music making apps that’s only going to get better. If you want great tablet music apps, the iPad platform delivers.

The iPad Pro is also getting closer to being a full laptop alternative, especially with the improved file management and multi-tasking that is coming in iOS 11.

Many companies are making music software introductions iPad-first (like Korg with Gadget) and then porting them to laptop/desktop. And, reading between the lines, the rise of iOS music making was one of the drivers behind Ableton’s recent acquisition of Cycling ’74. “The landscape of the computing devices people use for music and media is changing radically,” noted Cycling ’74 CEO David Zicarelli at the time of the acquisition. “We can’t just count on the entire world having a laptop.”

What do you think of the state of the iPad Pro vs the Surface Pro and other hybrid options? Share your thoughts in the comments!