If you're mulling over an iPad purchase, Best Buy just gave you a good reason to wait a little while longer. This Black Friday (Nov. 25), the retailer will cut $125 off all makes and models of the iPad Air 2 and the 9.7-inch iPad Pro. That brings the Pro tablet's starting price down to $474 and the iPad Air 2's down to $274.
Best Buy made the iPad pricing announcement on a new site previewing the deals, which include up to $30 off discounts on Amazon Fire tablets and savings of up to $150 on Dell Inspiron laptops. These deals will be available from Thursday (Nov. 24) through Saturday (Nov. 26), with doors opening Thursday at 5 p.m., so make sure you've got your running shoes ready on Thanksgiving.
If you're trying to decide between these two Apple slates, they primarily differ on performance and supported accessories.
The biggest reason to pick the Pro over the Air is if you intend to use it for creativity apps that require a stylus to draw. Apple's Pencil accessory only works with its Pro tablets, and is the best stylus for the slate. The Pro is also the only one to support Apple's Smart Keyboard, but there are plenty of well-regarded keyboard cases for the Air 2, so that's no deal-breaker.
If you find yourself using demanding apps, the iPad Pro's A9X and M9 will likely be right for you, as it scored a 5,151 on the Geekbench 3 general performance test, which beats the Air 2 (4,547). That difference isn't huge, so those who use the iPad primarily for browsing and email will probably be satisfied by the less expensive Air 2.
Lastly, that extra $200 gets you more battery life, but probably not enough to make it worth the increase on its own. The 9.7-inch iPad Pro's time of 10 hours and 53 minutes on the Laptop Mag Battery Test is great, but the Air 2 (9:20) isn't shabby either.
iPad Pro Tips and Tricks
- Multitask on the iPad Pro
- Every iPad Pro Keyboard Shortcut You'll Ever Need
- Use the iOS Keyboard as a Touchpad
- Display Two Safari Tabs Simultaneously on the iPad Pro
- How to Use the Apple Pencil with iPad Pro's Notes App
- Edit Multiple Streams of 4K Video on the iPad Pro
- Use Your iPad Pro as a Secondary Display
- Check the Apple Pencil’s Battery Life
- Use Your iPhone as a Hotspot for the iPad Pro