Why I'm waiting to buy a new iPad Pro

iPad Pro 9.7-inch with 1st-gen Apple Pencil
iPad Pro 9.7-inch with 1st-gen Apple Pencil (Image credit: iMore)

Apple just released the brand-spankin'-new 10.5-inch iPad Pro and the freshly updated 12.9-inch iPad Pro. Between that roomier screen on the 10.5-inch, updated (read ridiculously powerful) display tech, and faster A10X Fusion chip, both seem to be calling my name. But I'm going to be equal parts frugal, wise, and annoyed with myself and choose to wait to upgrade to the latest iPad models from Apple.

"But why?" you and the less-responsible parts of myself ask. Well, I'll tell you.

See at Apple

I love my 9.7-inch iPad Pro and it loves me

A 9.7-inch iPad Pro is shown held in someone's hand.

I've said it before and I'll say it again: The 9.7-inch iPad Pro is my ideal Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy. I've rocked iPads Mini, Air, and 12.9-inch Pro, and nothing has been as perfect for me in both size and functionality as my 9.7-inch iPad Pro.

At WWDC in 2016 my 12.9-inch iPad Pro was stolen. It was a whole ordeal that eventually resulted in me replacing the tablet, but when I was presented with the option of replacing it with a 9.7-inch iPad Pro or another 12.9-inch iPad Pro, I had to think about it. See, I'd just been hanging out with Christina Warren and holding her legendary Rose Gold iPad Pro and there was something about the size, weight, and color (of course) that just felt right.

I realized I didn't want a viable laptop replacement (something that the 12.9-inch Pro could very easily be), I just wanted a consumption and creation device that existed between the space occupied by my iPhone 7 and my MacBook Pro. Apple's smaller Pro tablet with its True Tone display and Apple Pencil was calling my name and I couldn't ignore it. I'm not ready to replace my 9.7-inch Pro, because it still feels perfect to me. When (if) that changes, that's when I'll make the jump.

I'm not ready to be ruined

Apple's new iPads have some seriously powerful display tech and I hear it's going to ruin me the same way Retina displays ruined me when they came out: It made using non-Retina devices unpleasant at best and positively old-school at worst. You can read more about Apple's ProMotion by checking out Serenity Caldwell's guide here:

Apple's ProMotion is going to change how we use our devices

It's going to "change how we use our devices," she says. Yeah, that's what I'm worried about. Right now I exist in a world where my 9.7-inch iPad Pro, iPhone 7 Plus, and MacBook Pro are all shining beacons of newness. I bring that 120Hz refresh rate into my home and it's curtains! Our brains are remarkably adept at adjusting to new stimuli so we get used to new things quite quickly. Unfortunately that means we get un-used to old things. When Apple introduced the new non-button Home button on iPhone 7, it didn't take long for the physical button on my iPad Pro to feel too squishy. I'm a little worried the 120Hz refresh rate is going to do the same.

When (if!) I update to the 10.5-inch iPad Pro, it's going to be later this year. I'm holding out hope that Apple's next iPhone will feature the same ProMotion tech in the new iPad Pro. Maybe we'll get True Tone displays, too?

My 9.7-inch iPad Pro is still a viable iOS 11 machine

When iOS 11 ships this fall and I tap that little update button in settings, my 9.7-inch iPad Pro is still going to feel like a brand new device … I know that 'cause I've loaded up the beta and will be running it throughout the summer. No matter the device, iOS 11 is going to bring a boat-load of new features to iOS and to iPad in particular. Between Drag and Drop, the new Dock, the new File app, and updates to the way Apple Pencil and iPad interact, I'm going to have plenty of exciting new things to keep me distracted from ProMotion and the bigger, 10.5-inch screen.

I might want a 10.5-inch screen, I might want the 120Hz refresh rate, and I might even want the better camera system in the 10.5-inch iPad Pro, but do I need those things? No — at least not right now. If Apple reveals some new iOS 11 features at its fall press event aimed at the new iPads Pro, that could easily result in me ponying up the cash. I'm a sucker for FOMO — especially when it comes to new, exclusive features. If my 9.7-inch iPad Pro couldn't do all the new multitasking stuff available in iOS 11, you can bet I'd already be holding a 10.5-inch Pro in my hands … heck, I'd probably be typing this editorial on it. But since, iOS-11-wise, my Pro can do everything the new Pro can do, I can resist the temptation.

I've decided I can wait. What about you?

Are you already rippin', rollin', and scrollin' through your new 10.5-inch iPad Pro? Have you decided to wait to upgrade? Will the 10.5-inch Pro be your first iPad? I'm curious to hear your thoughts (unless you're trying to talk me into upgrading — have mercy!), so be sure to share 'em in the comments below or send me a Tweet!

Mikah Sargent

Mikah Sargent is Senior Editor at Mobile Nations. When he's not bothering his chihuahuas, Mikah spends entirely too much time and money on HomeKit products. You can follow him on Twitter at @mikahsargent if you're so inclined.