Tim Cook, Apple’s current CEO, has stated for years that laptops and tablets should not compete in the same market. He has referred to laptop-tablet crossovers as being “confused” in the past, meaning that their true purpose is unknown.
People, even CEOs, change their minds. Rumor has it that Apple has been secretly working on a much larger iPad, dubbed the iPad Pro, which could be a crossover device. With the right formula, the iPad Pro could be a winner in the workforce.
Apple’s iPad sales have slowed down year after year. One possible reason for slumping sales, could be Apple’s own iPhone 6 Plus. The iPhone 6 Plus is certainly a large phone, nearly the size of an iPad mini. The subtle size difference is a deciding factor in whether a consumer might purchase an iPad, or just stick with the iPhone 6 Plus for their media consumption needs.
Many people do wish to stick with a smaller phone, and opt for the larger iPad to handle other activities better suited for a larger screen. The iPad is great for a number of reasons including reading, online shopping, watching videos, and countless other tasks. However, one thing the iPad is not so good at is work.
Competition from laptop-tablet crossovers, like Microsoft in the form of the Surface Pro 3, could be another reason that iPad sales are slowing down. The Surface has proven to be a viable resource in the office.
Competition has slowed iPad sales
Firms are taking advantage of the capabilities that these new computers provide. Products like the Surface have the power of a traditional laptop, even including all the necessary connection ports for ultimate productivity in the office or on-the-go.
It is clear that Apple needs to try something new in effort to pick-up slumping sales. Rumors have been circulating for quite some time hinting to a much larger iPad that could possibly suit the workforce well.
It has been alleged that Apple has been working on a larger iPad since 2012. This particular iPad, referred to as the iPad Pro, is speculated to include a display larger than 12 inches.
12 inches is about 3 inches larger than the iPad Air 2. This means that the “iPad Pro” would be similar in size to the most popular MacBook currently on the market, making it the perfect size for a laptop-tablet crossover device.
This information comes from developers have unearthed a hidden keyboard deep within the code of iOS 9. After working the math, the keyboard would fit an iPad that is 12.9” leading us to believe the rumored screen size is accurate.Apple’s recent partnership with IBM is raising even more speculation into the matter. It has been stated that Apple together with IBM plan to reinvent the way that people work. Connecting all the dots, it definitely seems that Apple plans to take on Microsoft Surface Pro 3 head-to-head.
New improvements found in the upcoming iOS 9 are already laying the groundwork for increased productivity; some of these features have been available on the Surface for years.
These new features include Slide Over, Split View, and Picture in Picture, and QuickType. Only available for iPad Air 2, these new features will allow users to do more at once. Most of these features are a necessity for anyone who uses technology for work.
Slide Over will allow iPad users to, you guessed it, slide over an app from a predefined list of available applications to briefly view information from that app. When the user is done, he or she can quickly slide it off the screen.
Split View is an ingenious idea that came not from Apple, but their main competitor Microsoft. Split View will allow a user to simply snap two applications to the left and the right side of the display, making it easy to work on two things simultaneously.
Picture in Picture will allow iPad users to play a video on top of whatever application they are currently working on.
QuickType will provide iPad users with new tools and options to more rapidly type and edit text.
We know that the iPad is not ideal for work, and increasing sales of competing products like the Microsoft Surface are proving it. It is clear that Apple is aware of the iPad’s major weaknesses among the business sector and is working to minimize them.
In iOS 9 we will see some great new enhancements to the currently available iPad Air 2 that will make working a lot more efficient and maybe a little easier. However, these enhancements will not likely sway businesses away from competing laptop-tablet crossovers for their employees.
If Apple plans to capture the workforce, the iPad is certainly a great avenue to do that. However, more robust work related applications, a larger display, and a first-party keyboard are a must for the iPad Pro to come out less confused, and a lot smarter than the competition.