Ultimate Guide: iPad or MacBook is a better choice?

iPad Pro or MacBook Pro
iPad Pro or MacBook Pro

Image source from Apple.com

Intro to iPad or MacBook is a Better Choice

Years ago, no one could have anticipated this unexpected comparison between the iPad and MacBook.
The initial marketing of the tablet positioned it mainly as a device for gaming and watching videos on a larger on-the-go screen nonetheless the iPad Pro now features an incredibly powerful M2 processor, boasting processing capabilities comparable to those of a MacBook Air or even a MacBook Pro.

Lately, clients have been inquiring more frequently for advice on whether to opt for an iPad Pro or a MacBook Air. The decision to invest in an iPad Pro, MacBook Air or even a MacBook hinges entirely on your prioritized features and intended usage, as well as the convenience and productivity enhancements they offer.

Which tablet and Mac model are we comparing?

For our comparison, we’ll focus solely on the M2 iPad Pro 12.9-inch and the M2 MacBook Air 13-inch. It wouldn’t be logical to include the M2 MacBook Pro 14 and 16-inch Pro/Max processors in this comparison, as they operate at a different performance level that the tablet currently cannot match.

iPad or MacBook: What should we compare?

We will refrain from comparing elements like design, curvature, thickness and other aspects between the two devices additionally design tends to be highly subjective—people either love it, hate it or have no particular comment on it.

Applications / Softwares Compebility

The most prominent distinction lies in their operating systems. The iPad Pro operates on iPadOS, designed with touch interaction as its core focus and expanded cursor input capabilities throughout the system. On the other hand, macOS offers a conventional desktop experience.

It’s worth noting that macOS has the capability to run iPadOS apps, but not vice versa. The MacBook Air, powered by macOS, can seamlessly operate both Apple’s proprietary apps and a wide range of third-party applications, even those not available on the App Store. In contrast, the iPad is limited to running apps exclusively from the App Store.

Apple Pencil for iPad

Apple Pencil 1st Gen and 2nd Gen

The iPad Pro holds another significant advantage in its support for the Apple Pencil, enabling effortless note-taking, drawing and document markup. An added perk is the magnetic charging feature, where the Apple Pencil conveniently charges when attached to the top of the iPad Pro, a visually appealing and practical feature.

Apple Pencil 1st Gen and 2nd Gen Price and Specs

Both images are sourced from Apple.com

It’s important to note that the Apple Pencil is sold separately and is not included with the purchase of an iPad Pro.

Backup Data and Files

When it comes to backing up your iPad, your only reliance is only iCloud. However, with the MacBook, you have the flexibility to opt for backing up to an external USB hard disk if you prefer not to utilize iCloud. It’s important to note that Apple offers only 5GB of free storage space and for bigger storage capacities such as 50GB, 200GB, and 2TB, a monthly subscription is necessary.

For further insights into iCloud backup, you can find more information by clicking here.

Battery Life (Hours)

Battery life comparison

The M2 Air boasts a remarkable battery life of up to 15 hours (with 52 hours of wake-up time) hence surpassing the iPad Pro’s capacity of only ten hours of usage (with 40 hours of wake time) for Wi-Fi models, and nine hours for cellular models.

If your intention is to acquire a tablet for laptop substitution and you hold apprehensions regarding battery longevity as a result the M2 Air stands as a superior choice in this regard.

Camera between iPad or MacBook

In the realm of camera comparison between the two, the iPad distinctly outshines its counterpart. It boasts both front and rear camera options, coupled with commendable photo and video sensors.

The tablet has a 12MP wide camera along with a novel 10MP ultra-wide camera, enabling you to capture broader scenes while shooting. Notably, the iPad Pro boasts the capability to record 4K video at 60 frames per second presents users with the opportunity to capture shots in Portrait Mode and explore an array of other shooting features, catering to the needs of photography and videography enthusiasts.

Additionally, the iPad Pro is equipped with a 7MP front-facing TrueDepth camera and the inclusion of a LiDAR scanner further enhances its appeal, particularly when engaging with augmented reality (AR) applications.

Nevertheless, this doesn’t imply that the camera on the Air is subpar. With its 1080 resolution FaceTime front camera, a substantial advancement from the prior 720 resolution, aided by M2’s image signal processing, the Air’s camera capabilities are noteworthy. This surpasses the 720 resolution front camera featured in the M2 MacBook Pro 13-inch.

In terms of biometric security, the iPad offers the convenience of Face ID, while the M2 MacBook Air features Touch ID with your finger. While both methods are secure, Face ID stands out for its seamless usability—you simply need to direct your face toward the screen,

Connectivity (Ports)

Ports on M2 MacBook Air

Image source from Apple.com

Both the tablet and Air offer limited physical ports, yet the Air holds an advantage with a greater number. In contrast to the iPad Pro’s single USB Thunderbolt 4 port, the MacBook Air boasts two of these ports, alongside a 3.5mm audio jack for speakers.

Consequently, for the Air, you can charge your laptop while simultaneously connecting another device, such as a flash drive or any USB peripheral. Accomplishing this with the iPad Pro would necessitate purchasing a separate Thunderbolt dock, incurring additional costs.

Display Screen Quality and Resolution

M2 iPad Pro

Image source from Apple Newsroom

The tablet boasts a sharper resolution of 2732×2048 pixels. In terms of brightness, its mini-LED screen offers a maximum of 1,000 nits for full-screen use and 1,600 nits for HDR peaks. This advanced technology provides enhanced precision in dimming dark areas, a pivotal factor for achieving superior contrast. Consequently, it emerges as an optimal choice, particularly when working outdoors or in places susceptible to high glare and reflections.

On the other hand, the Air features a resolution of 2560×1664 pixels, accompanied by a comparable maximum brightness of 500 nits.

Additionally, the tablet presents a touchscreen functionality, setting it apart from the Mac. Interacting with the Mac requires the use of a keyboard and trackpad, which might be more suitable for those who enjoy utilizing gestures on the trackpad.

Performance between iPad and MacBook

Apple M2 Processor

Although both devices utilize the M2 processor, there’s a distinction in terms of RAM. The MacBook Air provides the flexibility to upgrade to either 16GB or 24GB of RAM, a feature that’s not available for the iPad Pro. This dissimilarity renders a direct comparison between the two devices somewhat inequitable.

If you’re interested in determining the optimal amount of RAM for your MacBook, you can delve into further details here.

Conclusion to iPad or MacBook is a Better Choice

As the saying goes, when you’re an adult, you don’t necessarily need to limit yourself to choosing just one of these fantastic devices – why not have both? Haha.

We trust that you’ve acquired valuable insights and that our guidance has facilitated your decision-making process. For more advice, tips and tricks within the Apple Mac universe, please stay tuned for our upcoming posts!

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