Professional photog/developer Sebastiaan de With accidentally discovered that the rear-facing camera in the 2021 iPad Pro can focus on objects very close to the lens. This allows the tablet to capture close-up images not possible with an iPhone.
Cult of Mac did a bit of experimenting and confirmed the results.
2021 iPad Pro camera is damn near a microscope
De With is a co-founder of Lux, which makes the iPhone/iPad photography application Halide. That’s why he did a deep dive into the cameras in the just-released iPad Pro.
During testing, he discovered what he calls a hidden superpower. “iPad basically comes with a microscope,” said de With. “That’s right: you can take some pretty incredible macro shots of things without any accessories.”
As a highly skilled photographer, he took some pictures to demonstrate.
— Sebastiaan de With (@sdw) May 26, 2021
Don’t try this with your iPhone. “The iPhone 12 Pro (or any iPhone, really) has a different lens design and only focuses to about 8 cm (that’s over 3 inches) away from the camera lens,” said de With. “iPad Pro easily focuses on things much closer to its sensor.”
Cult of Mac took a pair of comparison shots with the standard iPadOS and iOS camera apps to compare the close-up capabilities of the 2021 iPad Pro versus the iPhone 12.