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When did iPads get as expensive as MacBooks?

Apple’s iPad event had a lot to like. New iPads with new chips and new sizes, a new Apple Pencil, and even some software updates. If you are a big fan of Apple hardware, well, it was probably a good day. Now you can get an updated and thinner iPad Pro, if that’s your jam.

But while watching the event and parsing its news in the immediate aftermath I ran into a personal sticking point. While it’s welcome that iPads are getting more and more powerful, their price point is challenging and even surpassing those of many computers. Which seems a little bit backwards. Here’s how TechCrunch reported on the matter:

It’s also an expensive machine: The iPad Pro starts at $999 for the 11-inch model. The 13-inch version costs $1,299. And the iPad Pro doesn’t come with a keyboard or a pencil in the box, so you often end up paying more than the price of a MacBook Air.

Those prices go up by $200 if you want cellular connectivity. So if you wanted a new iPad Pro 13-inch with cellular connectivity and a keyboard you are well in excess of the base price for a Macbook Pro. You know, a full real computer with no caveats.

The thing here is that Apple’s chips are great, and its laptops are super lovely. I am writing to you on an M-based MacBook Pro right now, and it’s gosh darn lovely. I just cannot imagine paying a similar ticket price for something that is, well, not as good as a productivity device and has a more locked-down OS to boot. I could be completely bonkers here, but the pricing and positioning for Apple’s impressive new devices leaves me puzzled. Let’s talk about it.

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