New iPad Pro Supports Wi-Fi 6, New MacBook Air Still Has 720p Webcam, and Other Tidbits
Apple announced new iPad Pro and MacBook Air models today. We’ve compiled some smaller tidbits about each device below.
As with iPhone 11 models, the new iPad Pro supports Wi-Fi 6, aka 802.11ax. The newer standard delivers faster speeds, greater network capacity, improved power efficiency, lower latency, and connectivity improvements in areas with several Wi-Fi devices. Wi-Fi 6 devices must support WPA3, a Wi-Fi security protocol with improved cryptographic strength.
By comparison, the new MacBook Air still supports Wi-Fi 5, aka 802.11ac, and it also continues to have a lackluster 720p front-facing camera.
While the new MacBook Air has a lower $999 starting price, the notebook is even cheaper for those who qualify for an educational discount, with the base model starting at $899 for students and their parents, faculty, and even homeschool teachers of all grade levels, which is particularly interesting with many schools closed amid the COVID-19 pandemic.
MacRumors contributor Steve Moser has discovered glyphs in iPadOS 13.4 GM code that suggest users will be able to view the battery life of their Magic Mouse, Magic Trackpad, and other Bluetooth mice in the batteries widget of the Today view on the iPad, accessible by swiping right on the first page of the home screen. Apple announced that iPadOS 13.4 will gain trackpad support, with the software update to be released March 24.
As noted by Parker Ortolani on Twitter, one small change is that the Apple logo on the upcoming Magic Keyboard case for the iPad Pro is now horizontally positioned so that the logo appears upright when the iPad is used in landscape orientation.
Anyone else notice that the Apple logo on the back of the Magic Keyboard cover is horizontal? Been wanting them to add that for years. pic.twitter.com/227WvC1Icz
— Parker Ortolani (@ParkerOrtolani) March 18, 2020
Apple’s new iPad Pro models now start with 128GB of storage, up from 64GB, and all higher storage tiers are now $50 cheaper. For example, an 11-inch iPad Pro with 256GB of storage and Wi-Fi only is now $899, whereas the equivalent 2018 model was $949. This price cut applies to all 256GB, 512GB, and 1TB storage tiers for the new 11-inch and 12.9-inch iPad Pro.
Apple says the new LiDAR Scanner on the latest iPad Pro models improves the Measure app, making it faster and easier to automatically calculate someone’s height, while helpful vertical and edge guides automatically appear to let users more quickly and accurately measure objects. The app is also gaining a Ruler View for more granular measurements.
A few tidbits we noted earlier include the upcoming Magic Keyboard for iPad Pro offering pass-through USB-C charging for accessories, and the new MacBook Air supporting up to a 6K external display, including Apple’s Pro Display XDR.