Apple iPad Pro (11-inch) 2021 with M1: Is it worth buying now?

Apple iPad Pro 2021 review
Apple iPad Pro 2021 review


Apple’s latest iPad Pro with M2 was launched in October 2022, but the company is still selling the iPad Pro with M1 or the iPad Pro 2021. If you buy the iPad Pro 2021, you still have a powerful tablet and can save a few bucks. I recently bought Apple iPad Pro (11-inch) 2021 and have been using it for around 10 days for video editing, videos, and designing. If you are thinking to buy an iPad Pro, keep reading. I am writing a detailed review of the Apple iPad Pro (11-inch) 2021.

The 2021 iPhone Pro M1 comes with a slim design. It has a matte-finished aluminum body. It has a Thunderbolt port at the bottom and speaker grilles on the top and base side. The top side also features a power button. It also has a volume rocker on the right side. On the back panel, it has a dual camera setup at the top-right corner and keyboard connector pins at the bottom side.

The tablet feels light in weight and thin. It weighs 466 grams. The overall design of the tablet is impressive

The tablet features an 11-inch Liquid Retina IPS LCD display with a 2388 x 1668 pixels resolution. The display has a 120Hz refresh rate. It supports True Tone color temperature adjustment and full coverage of the P3 wide color gamut. The display shows good colors and the brightness is also impressive. So, games and videos look really good. It also has good viewing angles and doesn’t show any color inversions from obtuse angles.

Apple iPad Pro 2021 review

The tablet packs the same M1 processor that Apple also used in its 2021 Macs. So, the 2021 iPad Pro is capable of offering a desktop level of performance. In terms of performance, the 2021 iPad Pro is similar to MacBook Air M1. But, most people cannot use the full power of this tablet. It can handle all the tasks with ease. You can edit 4K videos smoothly. With a Thunderbolt port, you can also pair the display with external monitors. I enjoy the smooth performance without any stutters or jerkiness.

The tablet is also a powerful gaming device. With a 120Hz display and a powerful processor, you will surely enjoy smooth gameplay. I tried playing several games and the device offered top notch experience. You can pair it with a controller to improve your gaming experience.

Apple iPad Pro 2021 review

The tablet was initially shipped with iPadOS 14 but now when iPadOS 16.1 is already available, the tablet runs iPadOS 16.1. So it has several features like iCloud shared photo library, Passkeys, Stage Manager, New Display Modes, Live Text in videos, and more. The iPadOS experience is really great. Animations are smooth with no glitches or lag.

I only bought the Apple Pencil (2nd Gen) for the iPad Pro 2021. It is a nice accessory for drawing or sketching. I spent hours in making designs on ProCreate and didn’t face any issues.

Apple iPad Pro 2021 review

The 2021 iPad Pro features a 12 megapixel wide camera and 10 megapixels ultra-wide camera. There’s also a LiDAR sensor and a flash. The camera captures impressive photos in good lighting conditions. It cannot match the camera of flagship phones, but photos come out really well. It can also record 4K video up to 60 fps, and slow-mo video up to 240 fps. The tablet record impressive videos. So, you can record high-quality videos directly from the tablet and then edit them on the big screen. The 12 megapixels front camera also supports Portrait Mode. It captures good portrait selfies.

The tablet also supports Apple’s new Center Stage that lets the camera track and follow your face. This feature will make your video calls even better.

The iPad comes with a quad-speaker setup that provides an impressive sound experience. It also supports Dolby Atmos. The tablet delivers balanced sound with deep mids. The sound is also loud enough for watching movies and videos without needing to pair with any speaker. It also has five studio-quality microphones that capture good sound. So, the calling experience and audio recording experience are also decent.

The iPad Pro 2021 features FaceID which works fine in both landscape and portrait orientation.

There’s also a 5G model but I opted for the Wi-Fi-only model. The tablet supports Wi-Fi 6 but not the newer Wi-Fi 6E. It also has Bluetooth 5.0 support. The Thunderbolt 3 port lets you charge the tablet, transfer the data at a faster speed, and connect to up to a 6K external monitor via DisplayPort.

The 2021 iPad Pro M1 packs a 28.65-watt-hour battery that easily offers around 10-12 hours of battery life depending on the usage. I used the tablet to stream video, surf the web, and draw on Procreate and Affinity. If you do a lot of video editing and sketching, the number of hours may dip but you will be satisfied with overall battery performance. Apple ships the 2021 iPad Pro 11-inch model with a 20W charger, and a USB Type-C to Type-C cable. It takes around 2 hours to charge with the bundled charger.

Should you bet iPad Pro (2021) with M1 in 2023?

We already have iPad Pro (2022) with M2 in the market. Apple’s M2 chip is more powerful than the M1. So, the latest iPad Pro is obviously more powerful. But iPad Pro (2021) with M1 is still relevant and good enough to get in 2023. I found it good enough for powerful tasks such as video editing, photo editing, sketching, and drawing. Even if the tablet has an LCD display, it is really good and offers an impressive video experience.

Where to buy:

iPad Pro (11-inch) 2021

8.9 Score

"iPad Pro (11-inch) 2021 is a powerful tablet with nice display, powerful performance, and long battery."

The Good

  • Powerful performance
  • Excellent display
  • Loud and punchy speakers
  • Excellent Battery

The Bad

  • Premium price
  • Expensive accessories


  • Design and build 90%
  • Display 95%
  • Performance 95%
  • Camera 75%
  • Battery 90%
  • Value for money 85%