Pixar and Walt Disney Animation Studios have endorsed Apple's new 9.7 inch iPad Pro ahead of its launch in New Zealand.
"People don't realise how much hand drawing is needed to produce computer animation," said Pixar and Walt Disney Animation Studios chief creative officer John Lasseter in a press release published by Apple. "iPad Pro and Apple Pencil are the closest we've ever been able to get in the digital world to actually drawing on paper."
The new 9.7-inch iPad Pro, available from New Zealand retailers from March 31, includes support for Apple Pencil. Advanced sensors in Apple Pencil measure both pressure and tilt for a natural drawing, annotating and note-taking experience.
Pixar and Walt Disney Animation Studios aren't the only ones to be raving about the capabilities of the new iPad.
"I've done everything including designing the latest cycling collection on iPad Pro," said Rapha head of design Alex Valdman.
"It goes with me everywhere, and has not only replaced my laptop, but my paper notebook as well. For the Rapha design team, iPad Pro will become standard issue."
Citi Global Consumer Banking US head of design Stephen Gates said: "At Citi, iPad Pro is truly transforming how we work. iPad Pro and Apple Pencil have played a huge part in the new Citi Design team's work to create new innovative customer experiences. We use iPad Pro for sketching out new design concepts, presenting our work, answering our emails, working with our design files on Adobe Creative Cloud and participating in FaceTime meetings with our other design teams all over the world."
Apple's senior vice president of worldwide marketing, Philip Schiller, said the new generation of iPad enabled people to be more productive and creative.
"The 9.7-inch iPad Pro has a new Retina display with True Tone technology, four-speaker audio system, blazing fast A9X chip, 12-megapixel iSight camera, 5-megapixel FaceTime HD camera, faster wireless, and support for Apple Pencil and Smart Keyboard. It is the ultimate upgrade for existing iPad users and replacement for PC users."
It's unlikely, however, the new iPad will ever replace the PC, especially in the enterprise market where so many businesses rely on especially written PC software to operate. At 500 grams, however, it is much more portable.
The True Tone display uses new four-channel sensors to dynamically adjust the white balance to match the light around you for a more natural and accurate, paper-white viewing experience. The advanced Retina display is 25 per cent brighter and 40 per cent less reflective than iPad Air 2, making content even easier to see indoors and out, Apple claims.
Night Shift, a new feature in iOS 9.3, uses iPad Pro's clock and geolocation to automatically adjust the colours in the display to the warmer end of the spectrum after dark and may even help you get a better night's sleep.
iPad Pro has a 12-megapixel iSight camera sensor with Focus Pixels for fast focusing, an image signal processor, advanced noise reduction, third-generation local tone mapping and better face detection, Apple boasts all resulting in sharp, detailed images, 63-megapixel panoramas and Live Photos.
A True Tone flash improves low light shots and document scanning.
The new iSight camera shoots 4K video, making the new iPad Pro good for shooting, editing and sharing professional quality video. The improved 5-megapixel, front-facing FaceTime HD camera makes the new iPad Pro good for videoconferencing.
A new Apple made Smart Keyboard is custom-designed for the 9.7-inch iPad Pro, offering a thin yet durable keyboard that never needs to be charged or paired over Bluetooth and is easily foldable into a protective Smart Cover.
The new Lightning to SD Card Camera Reader and Lightning to USB 3 Camera Adapter make it easy to download photos and videos from a digital camera to iPad Pro, while a new Lightning to USB-C Cable and Apple's 29W USB-C Power Adapter enable faster charging.
The 9.7-inch iPad Pro comes in silver, space grey, gold and a new rose gold metallic finish, and starts at a recommended retail price of $1,049 for the 32GB with Wi-Fi model and starts at a recommended retail price of $1,269 for the 32GB Wi-Fi + Cellular model. Both iPad Pro sizes are available in 32GB, 128GB and a new 256GB capacity.