I got an iPad Pro 9.7” for the time being, and to be honest, I like it more than I thought I would.
(Previously I had an Acer W700, Surface Pro 3, and 4.)
Let’s put the OS aside and compare the form factor and size.
I think for casual tablet use, iPad’s form factor (10” 4:3) is the best. I bought a laptop-like dock (think Brydge, or Surface Book), to keep it standing upright, because it cant stand on its own. IMO every tablet deserves an integrated kickstand, but this will do for now. When detached, I still think 4:3 is the way to go for portrait use, and 10” is the perfect for casual use that’s still somewhat usable for productivity. Of course, you’ll not do a lot an entire spreadsheet in Excel on a 10” screen, get the overview and to input some data once the layout is done. Even then, I did the layout of tablet comparison in the other thread on my PC, and filled the data in on the iPad. I did the Eve V vs Mercedes comparison entirely on the iPad.
However, what it lost in Excel, it gains in reading and annotation. The size and weight is much more usable for holding-while-writing than 12”. When I put it on the table next to my desktop at work, it still leaves a decent amount of space for the mouse and keyboard, and its not getting in the way. The same cant be said about a 12” tablet. I think as a tablet, for reading or writing, 10” is the perfect size. It is also much more convenient to be brought everywhere, and the small size makes it hold-able one-handed.
Now talking about the OS, iOS definitely fits 10” best. The first iPad was 10”, and the mainstream iPad has been 10”, so there is no doubt that the OS is optimized for this size first and foremost. The biggest problem with iOS, imo, is actually not th apps, but the lack of cursor. Sure, I prefer touching the screen most of the time, but for the rest of the time, not having a cursor is quite a PITA, because those are usually the critical moments. One thing to note, it lacks F-keys (F2, F5, etc.), though most has been replaced with Cmd+something combo. That, however, requires you to un-learn the muscle memory if youre coming from a desktop OS.
Recent IOS 11 update is huge. It might be just mere styling changes on the iPhone, but it got dangerously close to come to the functionality of a desktop OS on the iPad. Sure, the apps are still lacking, there is no denying that, but then again, there isnt any productivity tablet OS that doesnt have an app gap. Either you miss the legacy apps with iOS, or you miss the modern apps on Windows 10. Pick your poison.
More importantly, however, is that it feels a LOT like the modern rendition of Windows 8, which I personally love. The vision of a touch-first OS, where touch is a fluid gesture, not a mere mouse emulation, has been gone on Microsoft side. It’s not just me, heck, even Steven Sinofsky, the man behind Windows 7 and 8 loves it, and is embracing the vision that Microsoft has been backtracking ever since he left. I am personally planning to install Windows 8 on my Eve V, and I am very surprised that iOS 11 picked up basically what Windows left off in an attempt to cater the lowest-common-denominator with Windows 10.
Being iOS, it still has the character of iOS since its inception, like long battery life, reliable sleep mode, etc. In my case, I charge the iPad every night, and there has been no case where I run out of charge at any time. The bad news, well, the Apple Pencil has pretty much the same battery life as the iPad itself if you use it actively. Basically, if you charge them every night, you will not run out of charge at any given time, no matter what you do with it.
Tldr; If the apps that you need is available on iOS, the iPad Pro with iOS 11 is worth the try. I’m not saying it will replace your Surface or V, but the experience is nice nonetheless. Plus, you may want to keep it once your V arrives, as its ‘little sister’