Apple CEO Tim Cook recently spoke about the rise in popularity of 2-in-1 devices, so that the company was not looking into a convergence of the iPad and MacBook, despite the fact that a number of other companies, such as Microsoft and Lenovo, have done so.
“We feel strongly that customers are not really looking for a converged Mac and iPad,” said Cook in an interview with The Irish Independent. “Because what that would wind up doing, or what we’re worried would happen, is that neither experience would be as good as the customer wants. So we want to make the best tablet in the world and the best Mac in the world. And putting those two together would not achieve either. You’d begin to compromise in different ways.”Basically, Cook thinks that combining the two devices would mean that Apple would have to compromise on the user experience for the use of the device. In other words, while Apple has a great MacBook users experience for those using a MacBook, and a great iPad user experience for those using the iPad, Cook suggests that a hybrid would mean a less-then-ideal experience for both.
The news comes shortly after Cook made comments about the future of computing and about the release of the iPad Pro, saying that he saw no reason why anyone would buy a PC anymore considering the fact that the iPad Pro was released. According to Cook, the iPad Pro is a replacement for the notebook for many people. Of course, he went on to clarify that he meant there was no longer a need for Windows-based PCs rather than Mac computers.
“What we’ve tried to do is to recognize that people use both iOS and Mac devices. So we’ve taken certain features and made them more seamless across the devices. So with things like Handoff we just made it really simple to work on one of our products and pick it up and work on the next product,” said Cook in an interview with The Telegraph.
Of course, hybrids between computers and tablets are nothing new. Both Android-based and Windows-based hybrids have been around for a number of years now. These devices basically are a tablet that connects to a hardware keyboard and can be used as a laptop. This is different than a tablet that can connect via Bluetooth or something similar to a keyboard, but still remains a tablet in use.
Cook’s comments are certainly interesting, and while the iPad Pro does certainly blur the line between laptop and computer, there is one reason why some would consider a Windows hybrid over the iPad Pro – the iPad Pro still only runs iOS, which is a great operating system, but is a mobile one. Because of that, the device is limited by the apps on the App Store. While on many Windows-based hybrids, which run operating systems like Windows 10, could run software like Adobe’s Creative Cloud, the iPad Pro is only able to run mobile versions of the Creative Cloud, which are significantly less powerful.
According to Cook, this is somewhat the point. He says that Apple recognizes that people do different things on different devices and don’t necessarily want a device that can do it all. This is different than the likes of Microsoft, which is pushing the convergence of its operating system, enabling Windows Phone 10 users to use their device as a computer.
Also, Cook’s comments don’t rule out Apple making some kind of hybrid in the future, just the near future. While if the company were to make one today it may compromise on quality, as technology improves its certainly possible that these compromises would cease to exist and that the company would be able to make something that adheres to Apple’s design and ease-of-use philosophy.
It’s also important to note that it is definitely in Apple’s best interests to push the value of distinct categories of computer hardware, not only because it doesn’t currently offer a hybrid, but also because of the fact that it also runs a hardware business.
Only time will tell if the hybrid business takes off on a level that convinces Apple that it needs to do something.