Apple Details New iPad Pro's XDR Display, Thunderbolt Support, and iPadOS Updates Over 5G in New Support Documents

The new iPad Pro started arriving to customers on Friday, and Apple has since shared additional details about the device in a series of support documents, covering topics like the Liquid Retina XDR display, Thunderbolt and USB4 support, 5G networking on cellular models, and the new Center Stage front camera feature for video calls.

ios14 ipad pro settings cellular data cellular data options data mode 1
In addition to up to 1,000 nits of full-screen brightness, Apple said the Liquid Retina XDR display supports a peak brightness of 1,600 nits for highlights in up to 40 percent of the screen area when the rest of the image is black or at a brightness of up to 600 nits:

To achieve Extreme Dynamic Range required an entirely new display architecture on iPad Pro. The all new 2D mini-LED backlighting system with individually controlled local dimming zones was the best choice for delivering the extremely high full-screen brightness and contrast ratio, and off-axis color accuracy, that creative professionals depend on for their workflows.

The Liquid Retina XDR display can support up to 1000 nits of full-screen brightness. It can also support up to 1600 nits for highlights in up to 40 percent of the screen area when the rest of that image is black or at brightness up to 600 nits.

Apple said the M1 chip is the engine behind the new display:

Additionally, custom algorithms run on the advanced display engine of the M1 chip, working at the pixel level to control the mini-LED and LCD layers of the display separately, treating them as two distinct displays. These proprietary algorithms coordinate the mini-LED and LCD layers across transitions to deliver the optimal visual experience. Transitional characteristics of local dimming zones, such as a slight blur or color change while scrolling against black backgrounds, are normal behavior.

As for Thunderbolt 3 and USB4 support, Apple said some accessories can request higher power from the iPad Pro, so the company has reminded customers to disconnect these accessories from the device when they aren't being used:

iPad Pro 11-inch (3rd generation) and iPad Pro 12.9-inch (5th generation) also support a wide ecosystem of high-performance Thunderbolt and USB4 accessories. Some accessories can request higher power from your iPad, which might affect battery life. To extend battery life, remember to disconnect these accessories from iPad Pro when you aren't using them. Refer to your accessory manufacturers’ specifications for more information.

In line with iPhone 12 models, Apple confirmed that iPadOS updates over cellular are supported on the new iPad Pro when "Allow More Data on 5G" is enabled:

Allow More Data on 5G: Enables higher data-usage features for apps and system tasks. These include higher-quality FaceTime, high-definition content on Apple TV, Apple Music songs and videos, and iPadOS updates over cellular. This setting also allows third-party apps to use more cellular data for enhanced experiences.

The new iPad Pro features a new Ultra Wide front camera enabling Center Stage, a new feature that automatically keeps users perfectly framed during FaceTime video calls. Apple goes over the feature's settings in a support document.

A list of the new or updated support documents:

The iPad and iPadOS sections of the MacRumors forums are also helpful resources.

Related Roundup: iPad Pro
Related Forum: iPad

Top Rated Comments

Sebosz Avatar
16 months ago

Wait until WWDC re: the OS.
I’m gonna laugh if it will turn out that all they’re gonna introduce is widgets on Home Screen like on iOS devices ?
Score: 38 Votes (Like | Disagree)
InuNacho Avatar
16 months ago
All that potential but only one port and an OS that still gimped, even with its "Files" app.
Score: 23 Votes (Like | Disagree)
GeoStructural Avatar
16 months ago
iPad Pro needs a pro OS and pro apps. I got my $1900 iPad Pro yesterday (12.9 in, 1 TB), I love it, but even web browsing is handicapped by iOS, the website I use the most for work relies a lot on horizontal scrolling and the iPad simply cannot handle it, I need to go to the PC for that.

Also, the fact that you need a PC to transfer your music library is infuriating :mad:, come on Apple.
Score: 21 Votes (Like | Disagree)
thadoggfather Avatar
16 months ago
"Transitional characteristics of local dimming zones, such as a slight blur or color change while scrolling against black backgrounds, are normal behavior."


TIL users are scrolling static UI elements:
Score: 15 Votes (Like | Disagree)
MJaP Avatar
16 months ago

"Transitional characteristics of local dimming zones, such as a slight blur or color change while scrolling against black backgrounds, are normal behavior."


TIL users are scrolling static UI elements:

They've got one dimming zone covering roughly every 46x49 block of pixels, great for dynamic moving picture where persistance of vision covers for it but a nightmare for high contrast static text and graphics where bloom can run rampant... and part of the reason why professionals DON'T use Apple's XDR monitor for production critical work.
Score: 14 Votes (Like | Disagree)
BF1M Avatar
16 months ago
Still say they should have just gone OLED but whatever....
Score: 14 Votes (Like | Disagree)

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