iPad Pro vs MacBook Pro: Which is more powerful

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Some of you may find this comparison a little too risky, but know that, at least considering the basic version of the 13-inch MacBook Pro, the iPad Pro, from the Benchmark results, turns out to be more powerful than the Macbook Pro and many others. Obviously we are the first to not dwell only on these numbers, but it is still interesting to note how the hardware equipment of a tablet manages to exceed most of the laptops on the market. That said, let’s move on to the direct comparison between the two Apple devices.


So let’s start with the design and materials used to assemble. Despite the difference in type, the two Apple devices have very similar lines to each other. In fact, we are talking about the same satin aluminum for the body, the same apple logo highlighted by a glossy finish and very resistant front protective glass on both.

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Also at the design level, we find similarities: square frames, rounded corners and a thin and flat surface. What we find on iPad Pro and which instead is not present on the MacBook Pro, is obviously the single protruding rear camera, perhaps little used on a tablet, but which still affects the aesthetic side.

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In the front, obviously on the MacBook Pro, there is no shortage of the area relating to the keyboard and trackpad, it incorporates the same aesthetic lines just mentioned. As for the surface dedicated to the display, on iPad Pro we can count on a more homogeneous design, thanks obviously to the thin and practically identical bezels on each side. Apple’s computer instead appears slightly asymmetrical, with thicker bezels at the top and bottom. Nothing serious, but still a factor to consider.

A point in favor of iPad Pro is certainly portability, as it has smaller dimensions and weight than the aforementioned PC. This obviously considering that a keyboard and a trackpad are also included on the MacBook.

Keyboard and sensors

A computer cannot be considered as such, without a keyboard associated with it. On MacBook there is not much to say, this is included in the device, although it does not seem to be much appreciated by users. Leaving aside that addition on the new 16-inch MacBook Pro, the “butterfly” technology has received comments and reviews that are not always positive. This is probably due to the too short race, or perhaps simply because of the sudden change of course made by the Cupertino company.

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On the iPad Pro, however, we can only count on a software keyboard, improved with the arrival of iPadOS, but still not up to a physical accessory. However, this situation can also be seen as something positive, considering that in any case, it is possible to pair any keyboard via Bluetooth or Smart Connector. This means that it is up to the user to decide which one to buy, which may even be an advantage. Of course, even on the MacBook it is possible to do the same thing, but still going to make the equipment and the work surface more heavy, given the impossibility of removing the one supplied.

At the level of sensors installed, iPad Pro turns out to be ahead of the opponent. On the Apple tablet, there is the Face ID, advanced technology for facial recognition in 3D. On the MacBook the company has instead installed a classic Touch ID, now stopped since the days of iPhone 6s. We can not exclude the presence of the Touch Bar, for someone useless, for others well implemented.

Small parenthesis also regarding the use of tools dedicated to navigation interface. iPad Pro is in fact the only one to be compatible with Apple Pencil, a killer feature for artists and students. On the other hand, on the MacBook there is no lack of a trackpad, unparalleled comfort for gestures and window management. Also on iPad, it is possible to use a Bluetooth pointer, but only to simulate gestures by finger. All very inconvenient and inconvenient.

Ports and performance

As already mentioned above, at least by comparing the basic versions of the two devices, iPad Pro manages to manage its hardware much better, resulting more powerful than the MacBook Pro. Obviously, the heaviness of the added software must also be considered here. iOS certainly requires less effort, but does not allow the use of some important and much more complete software than those compatible with macOS (Final Cut Pro, xCode and more). In any case, on both you can count on an absolutely incredible fluidity and pleasantness of use.

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At the port level, despite the poor endowment on both devices, the MacBook Pro wins. The latter in fact has four Thunderbolt 3 connections in the form of USB-C and a 3.5 mm jack input, against a single USB-C port of iPad Pro. The battery is instead to the advantage of iPad: about 12 hours of use, against almost 9 of the MacBook.

Display and software

The Retina displays installed on these devices are wonderful, unfortunately still LCD and not OLED, but still beautiful to look at. Although slightly, however, the panel installed on the 12.9-inch iPad Pro, with its 2732 x 2048 pixels, manages to beat the 2560 x 1600 pixel one of the MacBook. The Apple tablet wins, in fact, both for colors (128.4% sRGB versus 119% sRGB) and for lighting power (484 nits versus 439 nits).

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On the other hand, we could talk about the software for hours, but we prefer to invite you to read the complete guide, written just to compare the two operating systems.


Once again, our conclusions can only define the comparison with a single sentence: everything varies according to needs. A programmer or video maker will find the best answer in the MacBook Pro, while an artist or student will not be able to do without iPad Pro with Apple Pencil. All these considerations were made without mentioning the sale price, hardly comparable without the addition of accessories (for example keyboard and Apple Pencil for iPad), but in all probability to the advantage of iPad Pro.