Why does the larger iPad pro support fewer LTE bands than the smaller one?

This was VTC'd despite not being "based on opinion, rather than facts, references, or specific expertise." In specific, the accepted answer which was accepted before the last two close votes came in, is purely factual and not opinion based in any way.

I take issue with the idea of a discussion about hardware design, something that's as concrete as it gets, being closed in this fashion, especially when the answer boils down to "it's an older device". Also acceptable would have been size/battery life/etc concerns, but you'll note that neither of those are opinion based either.


5 Answers 5


I voted to close the question as primarily opinion based.

When I reviewed the question, I saw that you pointed out two iPads with 'theoretical maximums' and asked 'why is the larger unit restricted?'.

My reading of that was that it could only be answered by someone who participated in the design and development of those devices. That would be Apple. As such, the question was considered off-topic because questions regarding why Apple does/doesn't do this as well as why they do what they do can only be answered by Apple.

  • 1
    In addition to good subjective / bad subjective, this is simply off topic. I've changed the close reason to indicate that more clearly. Once it's on topic, we can resume discussion of opinion based. As written now, it's both off topic and opinion based. Neither close reason sits with me as wrong.
    – bmike Mod
    Commented Mar 30, 2017 at 10:51

"Why does Apple do this or that" kind of questions are off-topic because nobody outside Apple knows for sure and any answer given is a speculation (or sometimes a lucky guess) and therefore an opinion. Even the answer to your now-closed question suggests that only Apple knows for sure.

Sometimes these kind of questions can be rewritten in a form which doesn't rely on insider information from Apple to given an answer. I can only encourage everybody asking a "why does Apple do things the way they do" to consider that approach. In your case this could be something like asking for specific differences in the the models which influence the number of supported bands, or asking for limiting factors regarding of number of bands.


I voted to leave this question open in the queue and have voted to reopen again now. I disagree that this question is opinion-based and when I saw the question in the review queue I was going to answer with something similar to the answer that was given. The question can be read as asking why Apple made some design decision, which is likely opinion-based, however this question is not written like this.

  • The answer provided is still mostly speculation. Unless someone wants to look at the cellular protocol chips in each device and cross reference them with availability from the manufacturers it's mostly a guess. Pretty good guess. But speculations nonetheless.
    – Ian C.
    Commented Mar 29, 2017 at 19:28
  • 2
    @Ian Speculation in an answer alongside facts doesn't diminish the answer. I occasionally include speculation at the end of my answer where it may provide useful information even if it doesn't answer the question in itself. Here, the actual answer is "The larger iPad Pro was released before the smaller one" and "the larger model wasn't "restricted" - it was released the year before the smaller model" — that's a perfectly satisfactory answer and resolves the confusion that OP had.
    – grg Mod
    Commented Mar 29, 2017 at 22:23
  • 3
    But there's no facts in the answer. The devices could have the exact same chips with feature sets being disabled/enabled differently, right? I would have closed this question, honestly.
    – Ian C.
    Commented Mar 29, 2017 at 23:27

I posted the answer and I agree with the closing. In re-reading my answer even it was opinion-based due to the opinion-based nature of the question. When I have to couch an answer with, "only Apple knows for sure," it's a pretty clear flag it's opinion based.


Just rephrase it as "Are there any objective reasons why the larger iPad Pro would support fewer LTE bands than the smaller one?" Then it's immune to being closed as subjective or opinion-based, since you've ruled out that kind of answer.

  • 1
    This doesn't get around the off topic close reason. This site closes "why did Apple do X" questions as off topic . The best way to get these reopened is to focus on the practical thing someone wants to do. So, "given that Apple has relaxed th she two devices with X characteristic, how do I accomplish Y?" The fault of the post being discussed is there is no Y to answer. Focusing on objective is a red herring here.
    – bmike Mod
    Commented Mar 30, 2017 at 10:46

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