Thunderbolt Coming to New 2021 iPad Pro

Apple may be planning to add Thunderbolt to the iPad Pro, making data transfer speeds up to four times faster on Apple's most powerful tablet.

iPad Pro USB C Feature Purple Cyan
According to a report from reliable Bloomberg journalist Mark Gurman, Apple has tested ‌iPad Pro‌ models with a Thunderbolt port to make them compatible with additional external monitors, hard drives, and peripherals.

Apple's Mac machines have featured Thunderbolt technology for many years, but the current ‌iPad Pro‌ and iPad Air models have standard USB-C ports, which only transfer at USB 3.1 Gen 2 speeds. This means that USB-C on the current ‌iPad Pro‌ can transfer at a speed of 10Gb/s, while Thunderbolt 4 supports speeds of up to 40Gb/s. As well as being considerably faster, Thunderbolt opens up the potential for compatibility with a much broader range of Thunderbolt-only accessories.

thunderbolt3
Apple is planning to refresh its ‌iPad Pro‌ lineup in the immediate future, introducing new models that "look similar to the current iPad Pros" in the same 11 and 12.9-inch screen sizes, according to Gurman. The two new ‌iPad‌ Pros are expected to feature an updated A14X processor that is "on par" with the M1 chip in the MacBook Air, MacBook Pro, and Mac mini, along with camera improvements.

A mini-LED display will be included with "at least" the larger 12.9-inch ‌iPad Pro‌, with the display upgrade bringing improved brightness and contrast ratios. This is in line with many previous rumors, which have also indicated that the upgraded display technology will be limited to the 12.9-inch ‌iPad Pro‌.

The new ‌iPad Pro‌ models are expected to arrive on April 20 at Apple's "Spring Loaded" event, potentially alongside new AirPods and the long-awaited AirTags item trackers.

Related Roundup: iPad Pro
Related Forum: iPad

Related Stories

iPad Pro Big Ol Logo

11-Inch iPad Pro No Longer Expected to Gain Mini-LED Display in 2022

Thursday March 10, 2022 2:13 am PST by
The updated 11-inch iPad Pro expected to launch sometime this year can no longer be expected to feature a mini-LED display like its larger 12.9-inch sibling, display analyst Ross Young said today on Twitter. Earlier rumors indicated that after keeping mini-LED exclusive to just the 12.9-inch iPad Pro in 2021, Apple would expand the newer display technology to the smaller 11-inch form...
iPad More Than 12

Massive New iPad Pro Could Finally Replace the Laptop

Wednesday July 7, 2021 3:17 am PDT by
Apple is working on even bigger iPad models that could further "blur the lines" between tablet and laptop, according to reliable Bloomberg journalist Mark Gurman. In the first edition of his new "Power On" newsletter for Bloomberg, Gurman said Apple is currently exploring iPads with larger displays for the future. An excerpt from the newsletter:I'm told that Apple has engineers and designers ...
ipad pro with m1 chip

Apple Introduces Next-Generation iPad Pro With M1 Chip, Thunderbolt, 5G, XDR Display, and More

Tuesday April 20, 2021 10:40 am PDT by
Apple today announced the next-generation iPad Pro with the same M1 chip found in the latest Macs, Thunderbolt and USB4 support, 5G connectivity on cellular models with mmWave support in the United States, and more. With an 8-core CPU and 8-core GPU, Apple says the M1 chip in the new iPad Pro provides up to 50% faster performance and up to 40% faster graphics compared to the A12Z Bionic chip ...
Apple iPad Air hero color lineup 220308

Apple Unveils New iPad Air With M1 Chip, Optional 5G, and Faster USB-C, Starting at $599

Tuesday March 8, 2022 10:23 am PST by
Apple announced a new iPad Air today at its "Peek Performance" event, featuring Apple's powerful M1 chip previously found in the iPad Pro, as well as optional 5G connectivity, a new front camera with Center Stage, and even faster USB-C connectivity. Available in a new array of colors, iPad Air features Apple's Ultra Wide front camera with Center Stage for a more natural video conferencing...
studio display

Studio Display Supports 5th-Gen iPad Air, But Not the 4th-Gen or the iPad Mini 6 [Updated]

Wednesday March 9, 2022 3:26 am PST by
Update: Apple has since confirmed to MacRumors that plugging in a fourth-generation iPad Air or iPad mini 6 into the Studio Display will result in a downscaled 1440p output. According to Apple, the new 27-inch 5K Studio Display supports a range of Macs going back to 2016 MacBook Pro models, but its compatibility with iPads is notably limited to the 11-inch iPad Pro, 12.9-inch iPad Pro...
iPad More Than 12

Mark Gurman: Apple Exploring iPads With Larger Displays

Sunday June 27, 2021 7:13 am PDT by
In the first edition of his new Power On newsletter for Bloomberg, Mark Gurman said Apple is exploring future iPads with larger displays, although he added that a potential release is likely at least a few years away if ever. An excerpt from Gurman's newsletter, which also covers some reshuffling of the Apple Car team, Peloton working on a heart rate monitor, and more:I'm told that Apple has ...
maxresdefault

2021 M1 iPad Pro vs. 2020 iPad Pro: Is It Worth Upgrading?

Friday May 28, 2021 12:01 pm PDT by
In our latest YouTube video, MacRumors videographer Dan goes hands-on with the new 12.9-inch 2021 M1 iPad Pro and compares it to the 2020 12.9-inch iPad Pro to answer the question "Is it worth upgrading?" Subscribe to the MacRumors YouTube channel for more videos. Compared to the 2020 iPad Pro, the 2021 model features an upgraded M1 chip that's faster, a new Center Stage option powered by an...
apple thunderbolt 4 pro cable 3m

Apple's New Studio Display Includes 1-Meter Thunderbolt Cable With 3-Meter Option Coming Soon

Tuesday March 8, 2022 2:29 pm PST by
Apple today introduced the Studio Display, a lower-priced 27-inch alternative to its Pro Display XDR. The standalone monitor includes a one-meter Thunderbolt cable in the box, and for customers looking for longer options, Apple has started selling a 1.8-meter Thunderbolt 4 Pro cable for $129 and has a three-meter option coming soon for $159. Apple says the Thunderbolt 4 Pro cable supports...

Popular Stories

Apple Watch Series 7 Starlight Midnight

Standard Apple Watch Series 8 Rumored to Feature Same Design as Series 7

Friday August 5, 2022 7:46 am PDT by
The standard 41mm and 45mm models of the Apple Watch Series 8 will feature the same design as the Apple Watch Series 7, according to Twitter user @ShrimpApplePro, who was first to reveal that iPhone 14 Pro models would feature a new pill-and-hole display. Titanium will not be an option for the standard Apple Watch Series 8 models either, according to @ShrimpApplePro, but Bloomberg's Mark...
cook sept 2020 event

Gurman: Apple Preparing Pre-Recorded iPhone 14 and Apple Watch Series 8 Event

Sunday August 7, 2022 6:13 am PDT by
Apple has "started to record" its virtual September event, where it's expected to announce the upcoming iPhone 14 lineup, the Apple Watch Series 8, and a new "rugged" Apple Watch model, according to Bloomberg's Mark Gurman. Writing in his latest Power On newsletter, Gurman says the event, which is expected to take place in the early part of September, is already under production, implying...
iPhone 14 Pro Purple Front and Back MacRumors Exclusive

Five iPhone 14 Rumors You May Have Missed

Thursday August 4, 2022 6:05 am PDT by
With August upon us, the countdown is officially on. We're just weeks away from when we're expecting Apple to announce the iPhone 14 lineup. Rumors of the next iPhone start early in the year, and as a result, some details about the upcoming device sometimes get lost in the crowd. Exclusive MacRumors iPhone 14 Pro renders by graphic designer Ian Zelbo To help MacRumors readers, we've created a ...
banish safari app pop ups

New iOS App Blocks Those Annoying 'Open in App' Pop-Ups in Safari

Friday August 5, 2022 2:47 am PDT by
You've probably experienced visiting a website like Reddit or LinkedIn on your iPhone only to be greeted with an annoying, almost full-screen pop-up urging you to view the content in their app instead of on the website. It's a common practice for websites that have accompanying iOS apps to push users to open (if they already have the app installed) or download their app from the App Store to ...
top stories 7aug22

Top Stories: iPadOS 16 Delayed, iPhone 14 Pro Rumors, Studio Display Speaker Issues

Saturday August 6, 2022 6:00 am PDT by
The big Apple news this week was word that the upcoming iPadOS 16 update apparently won't be arriving alongside its counterpart update for the iPhone in September, largely due to a need to continue refining the new Stage Manager multitasking feature. Other popular stories this week included more hints about the iPhone 14 Pro's rumored always-on display, potential design leaks for the...