Apple tries to address iPad Pro ‘bendgate’ concerns with new support page

Isaac Cain
January 13, 2019

Most reports of bent iPad Pros mention that the deviation is found along the top edge of the tablet near the antenna line. In iPad Pro cellular models, bands or splits are added to the side of the iPad to allow parts of the device to function as cellular antennas.

These precision manufacturing techniques and a rigorous inspection process ensure that these new iPad Pro models meet an even tighter specification for flatness than previous generations. It's a high temperature process involving the injection of plastic into precisely milled channels within the aluminum case. "After the plastic cools, the entire enclosure is finished with a precision CNC machining operation, yielding a seamless integration of plastic and aluminum into a single, strong enclosure".

Here, Cupertino also reiterated that it "allows for no more than 400 microns of deviation across the length of any side".

According to Apple, the new design and the presence of antenna modems on the new iPad versions might make it easier for the slight bend to be visible by the customer from certain angles. The move is seen as an attempt to address the bent iPad Pro controversy, which has triggered a backlash from loyal Apple fans. And whether or not an iPad Pro bends to the extent exhibited by Zack Nelson in his viral JerryRigEverything review, one would hope that a product potentially running customers more than $1,000 doesn't come bent straight out of the packaging.

Apple's iPad exploded into the consumer tech market in April of 2010, months ahead of the first Android-powered tablet, and since then the company has sold some 400 million units.

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Apple reiterated the previously shared tolerance of 400 microns, which is a stricter allowance than previous models of the iPad.

The Verge reported Saturday that Apple published a support page late Friday explaining the manufacturing process behind its newer iPad models and the slight bends that the company claims are basically a non-issue that won't affect functionality.

In terms of features, the 2018 iPad Pros and the 2017 iPad Pros are closer than you might think - they all run the same iOS 12 software, after all, which means you get the same built-in functionality and the same choice of apps across the board (even if everything on a newer iPad Pro might run a little faster than on an older iPad Pro).

Of course, it's possible some of the devices that are exhibiting bends in excess of Apple's tolerances are mistreating their devices.

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