The Apple Ipad Pro 2020 includes a lidar scanner, which uses pulses of light to help the hardware better interpret depth and understand location and position. It’s supposed to be especially useful in augmented-reality apps. However, after using apps with AR features like Wayfair (to look at a virtual couch I won’t buy) and JigSpace (a learning app that showed me how the inside of a lock works), I’m not convinced these are the ultimate use cases for lidar on a consumer device.
I didn’t notice a difference between the way these apps ran on the 2018 iPad Pro and the new Apple Ipad Pro 2020 model. My WIRED colleague Brian Barrett may be on to something in thinking that lidar in iPad is ultimately a dry run for some kind of AR head-up display.