Home Apple unveils iPad with AI capabilities and ‘outrageously powerful’ M4 chip

Apple unveils iPad with AI capabilities and ‘outrageously powerful’ M4 chip


  • Apple unveils new iPad Air with AI capabilities, alongside iPad Pro and Apple Pencil Pro.
  • iPad Pro features M4 chip, four times more powerful than predecessors, aimed at AI applications.
  • iPad Air now available in larger 13-inch size, equipped with M2 chip, priced at $800.

Apple has revealed its new iPad Air with AI capabilities, which they say is “more powerful and versatile than ever”.

During a pre-recorded live stream from its headquarters in Cupertino, California, the company unveiled the newest iterations of its iPad Pro and iPad Air tablets, along with the introduction of the brand-new Apple Pencil Pro.

CEO Tim Cook said on Tuesday (May 7), that it was “the biggest day for iPad since its introduction.”

The centerpiece of the new iPad Pro is Apple’s freshly designed M4 processor, boasting four times the performance of its predecessors. Notably, while Apple’s current MacBook lineup uses the M3 chip, CEO Cook stated that it was an “outrageously powerful chip for AI.”

The company is anticipated to unveil its initial set of AI tools for the iPhone and iPad at its annual Worldwide Developers Conference in June. However, it remains uncertain which AI capabilities the new M4 chips could enable.

What features do the new Apple products have?

Apple announced that the iPad Pro, its premium model, will feature upgraded displays and will start at $1,000 for the 11-inch (27.9-centimeter) variant and $1,300 for the 13-inch model.

It also introduced new versions of its mid-range iPad Air, now available in a larger 13-inch screen size priced at $800, along with the existing 11-inch option, which previously retailed at $600. These tablets are equipped with Apple’s M2 chip, which was first introduced in Apple’s MacBooks in 2022.

Johny Srouji, Apple’s senior vice president of Hardware Technologies said that the power-efficient performance of its AI M4 chip, along with its new display engine, makes the thin design and game-changing display of iPad Pro possible. Fundamental improvements to the CPU, GPU, Neural Engine, and memory system make M4 “extremely well suited” for the latest applications leveraging AI. He added: “Altogether, this new chip makes iPad Pro the most powerful device of its kind.”

Meanwhile, an upgraded Apple Pencil now features a new squeeze function, enabling users to access tools, customize drawing layers, and receive haptic feedback while working. It also supports Find My, assisting in locating the pencil if it gets misplaced. It will retail for $129.

iPad sales dropped 10 per cent in 2023 to $6.44 billion, while Mac revenue declined 34 per cent to $7.61 billion. The products now jointly account for only 15 per cent of Apple’s total sales – down significantly in recent years. Services have rapidly grown to represent a much larger business for Apple. The tech giant also reported last week a first-quarter revenue of $90.8 billion, down 4 per cent year over year.

Featured image: Apple

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Suswati Basu
Tech journalist

Suswati Basu is a multilingual, award-winning editor and the founder of the intersectional literature channel, How To Be Books. She was shortlisted for the Guardian Mary Stott Prize and longlisted for the Guardian International Development Journalism Award. With 18 years of experience in the media industry, Suswati has held significant roles such as head of audience and deputy editor for NationalWorld news, digital editor for Channel 4 News and ITV News. She has also contributed to the Guardian and received training at the BBC As an audience, trends, and SEO specialist, she has participated in panel events alongside Google. Her…

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