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The 2022 M2 Apple iPad Pro is my (drone) copilot

From planning the drone flight to editing the video, the new iPad Pro can handle everything.
2022 M2 12.9-inch iPad Pro with the DJI Mini 3 Pro drone

2022 M2 12.9-inch iPad Pro with the DJI Mini 3 Pro drone

Adrian Kingsley-Hughes/ZDNET

When Apple unveiled the new M2-powered iPad Pro, I was excited. Could this become a platform for planning my drone flights and editing the videos that I capture?

The weather was nice -- no rain and not much wind according to the excellent Apple Weather app --  so I decided to put it to the test. 

Also: The best drones: Which flying camera is right for you?

I grabbed my DJI Mini 3 Pro and headed out to take some video of the South Stack lighthouse, situated off the coast of Anglesey, North Wales, UK.

By the time I got to the location I was limited on time so only had about 20 minutes of flight before it got a bit too dark. After carrying out all the necessary checks, I got into the air and captured some footage.

The DJI Mini 3 Pro is a highly capable drone that's super portable

The DJI Mini 3 Pro is a highly capable drone that's super portable

Adrian Kingsley-Hughes/ZDNET

After I got the drone back in, I used the iPad Pro and a Satechi Multiport MX adapter to review the footage. 

This adapter is perfect for the job because it has a built-in microSD card reader. I could connect a microSD card reader direct to the iPad Pro's USB-C port, but this adapter gives me maximum flexibility. I have 512GB of space on the iPad Pro, so storage isn't an issue, but if it was I'd connect an external SSD to one of the USB-A ports to boost the storage. 

It's not perfect in terms of speed, but it works, and I did this on my previous iPad Pro quite a bit.

Using the iPad Pro and a Satechi Multiport MX adapter to review the drone footage

Using the iPad Pro and a Satechi Multiport MX adapter to review the drone footage

Adrian Kingsley-Hughes/ZDNET

After I got back home, I edited the footage using the awesome LumaFusion iPad app

This app is simply awesome, giving me powerful editing tools right at my fingertips when I'm on the iPad. This is the absolute best video editing app I've found for the iPad, and is perfect for sorting through, editing, and outputting drone footage without needing a laptop or desktop system. 

Also: Shaky photos? You're holding your smartphone wrong. Try this

It gives me access to professional tools -- even the ability to take the shake out of video -- but with the convenience and ease of use of an app.

LumaFusion for iPad

LumaFusion for iPad

Adrian Kingsley-Hughes/ZDNET

I added a bit of music from the amazing Artlist.io library and uploaded the final video to YouTube -- all from the iPad Pro!

I'm very pleased with the results. The big screen on the 12.9-inch iPad Pro gives plenty of screen real estate for editing, but it's a lot smaller and more convenient to take into the outdoors than my MacBook Pro is.

So yes, the new M2 iPad Pro is is a great platform for drone videographers who want an alternative to a laptop.

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