Earl Gibson

Web Developer

Freelance Artist

Tech Enthusiast

Earl Gibson

Web Developer

Freelance Artist

Tech Enthusiast

Blog Post

iPad Pro 12.9 3rd Gen (2018) Worth Buying in 2024?

February 28, 2023 Business, Tech
iPad Pro 12.9 3rd Gen (2018) Worth Buying in 2024?

Another year has gone by and with that, a new generation of iPad 12.9 has been released into the digital stream. Many budget shoppers like me have decided to take the opportunity to upgrade from the iPad Pro 1st/2nd to the 3rd generation. We now get to have a taste of the new tech at a fraction of the cost of buying new.


If you have been contemplating the same, then you might be wondering if the iPad Pro 3rd generation is worth the upgrade in 2024.


As usual, OS compatibility should be one of the first deciding factors when purchasing an iPad. Most generations including the iPad Pro 12.9 3rd presently support iPad OS17. This generation is likely to get a few more years of support compared to the 1st/2nd gens. This simply means that you will be able to upgrade next year or have a cushion until you decide to.


iPad Pro models compatible with iPadOS 17

  • iPad Pro 10.5-inch
  • iPad Pro 9.7-inch
  • Pad Pro 11-inch (1st generation)
  • iPad Pro 11-inch (2nd generation)
  • iPad Pro 11-inch (3rd generation)
  • iPad Pro 11-inch (4th generation)
  • iPad Pro 12.9-inch (2nd generation)
  • iPad Pro 12.9-inch (3rd generation)
  • iPad Pro 12.9-inch (4th generation)
  • iPad Pro 12.9-inch (5th generation)
  • iPad Pro 12.9-inch (6th generation)


Compared to newer models the iPad pro 3rd gens are pretty much identical when viewed from the front. The rare section is another story, on this model you get just one 12-megapixel camera. This won’t be a deal breaker since most of us rarely use our iPad for snapping pictures.

Touch ID is no longer present

Let’s start with the obvious, with the upgrade to the 3rd generation you no longer have the classic home button with touch ID. Instead, you get Face ID feature and a more modern design seen on later models. The removal of the home button also means the screen allows for more screen real estate since the bezels are reduced in size.

Lighting replaced with USB-C connector

While USB-C is the more universal connector, all iPhone models still feature the lighting connector. This might be somewhat of an inconvenience since you can no longer use your iPhone charger to charge your iPad and vice versa.

Apple Pencil 2nd Generation

One welcomed upgrade to the third-generation iPad is the Apple pencil 2nd gen. Unlike its predecessor, you no longer have to fiddle around with an awkward charging ritual. the 2nd generation Apple Pencil features a magnetic design that snaps to the side of the IPad while charging it simultaneously.

A12X Bionic chip

Although the performance of the 3rd generation is faster compared to its predecessor, it probably won’t be noticeable to the average user. List of Apps I use: Procreate, Luma Fusion, Affinity Designer, Affinity Photo, and YouTube. All these apps perform just the same compared to when I had the 1st generation. Besides using these apps I spend half the time using Safari to browse the web.

Average Cost

In 2022 I purchased a used iPad Pro 3rd Gen. 256GB, Wi-Fi + 4G (Unlocked), 12.9 in – Space Gray for $550 on eBay. After about a year, a quick search in 2023 sets the price between $500 – $600. In some cases, you might be able to get combination deals such as a keyboard or Apple Pencil. Swappa is another decent marketplace for getting a general idea of the price range.

Keep in mind, these prices will all vary depending on features such as condition, storage size, and cellular connectivity.

Who should upgrade to the 3rd generation?

If you have been planning to upgrade for a while, then there is no better time to than now. Simply put, iPad Pro 12.9 1st and 2nd are old technology that will eventually become obsolete. Apple will stop supporting these models at some time in the near future, which will significantly reduce their resale value.

On the other hand, if you only use your iPad for browsing the web then going through the hassle of selling and buying another one might not be worth the hassle.

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