Apple iPad 10.2in (2020): Eighth-gen iPad receives performance boost without the price hike

Rather than discuss the iPhone 12 in laborious detail, Apple has instead unveiled a suite of new updates to its iPad and Apple Watch offerings. Announced at its ‘Time Flies’ virtual event, held in Cupertino, California, Apple revealed a 2020 version of its most-popular tablet, the 10.2in iPad.

The headline feature of this 2020 model is that it’s now powered by Apple’s A12 Bionic chipset, the same processor found in 2018’s iPhone Xs smartphones. That might sound old-fashioned, especially when the new iPad Air uses the A14 Bionic, but Apple says the iPad 10.2in (2020) is 40% faster than last year’s model in CPU processing, with a 50% boost in graphics performance.

The comparisons with other devices didn’t stop there, either. Apple made sure to mention that the 10.2in iPad (2020) is up to 2x faster than the top-selling Windows laptop, up to 3x faster than the top-selling Android tablet and up to 6x faster than the top-selling Chromebook. Apple didn’t mention which devices these were, but there’s no denying that the 10.2in iPad (2020) should be very fast indeed.

There are changes to the iPad’s operating system, too. At the event, Apple also introduced iPadOS 14, which brings a handful of improvements including handwriting and shape recognition, with a smart selection feature that distinguishes between handwritten notes and doodles. The new Scribble feature also allows you to use the Apple Pencil in any text field, and annotate notes over a variety of documents.

Wrapping things up, the iPad 10.2in (2020) is the first to ditch the Lightning cable and make the move to USB-C for charging and data transfer. It’s also the first regular iPad to benefit from Apple’s Neural Engine for machine learning, which is capable of processing up to five trillion operations per second. At the event, Apple showed this off with the iPad 10.2in (2020) analysing a golf swing. Finally, the 10.2in iPad (2020) still includes a Smart Connector on one of the tablet’s long edges, which can be used to pair with an Apple or Logitech keyboard.

How much is all of this going to set you back? Well, despite all the extra goodies, the iPad 10.2in (2020) costs the same as last year and you’ll be able to buy one for £329 from 18 September.


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