Here we sit. Months away from the unveiling of next-gen iPads and iPhones. The rumor mill is cranking up surrounding an iPad Pro – for the love all things holy, don’t call it Plus. Apple is expected to unveil an ‘enterprise’ iPad with a bigger screen sometime in early Fall.
Bigger screen means a larger keyboard. And that’s what is sitting in iOS 9 dev tools. In addition to the split screen promises, Steve Troughton-Smith, a developer, has discovered another piece of tangible evidence.
— Steve T-S (@stroughtonsmith) June 15, 2015
iOS 9 has the option to change the UIKeyboard, an element that allows developers change Apple’s default keyboard. The interface in iOS 9 points to scalability to a much larger screen size.
Or, it could be Apple is going the large font Reader’s Digest path. Can’t see a damn thing? Here’s the font size ‘get your eyes checked.’ I’m leaning towards a bigger screen. It doesn’t outright confirm the iPad Pro’s existence, but until Tim Cook is calling the iPad Pro innovative on stage, let’s just assume it’s happening.
On the feature side, the new keyboard elements offer a lot more keys than on the current generation of iPads. It closely resembles the Apple hardware keyboard choices we use on the Macbooks, etc.
The working theory is it would come in handy if you are thinking of doing some serious work on the iPad Pro. Presumably, that’s why you would buy the larger iPad in the first place.
An iPad Pro does open Apple up to blurring its distinct product lines. Each larger iteration inevitably cannibalizes the product lineup just ahead of it. The iPhone 6 Plus is a phablet and ate into iPad Mini sales. A larger iPad? How does the Macbook Air survive in that environment?
An iPad Pro won’t cannibalize the MacBook Pro lineups, but the lesser tier Macbooks are in trouble. Apple isn’t about to dump a mobile graphics card into the slim iPads. At least not yet…
Luckily, Apple’s earnings do not live and die by the laptop lineup. It’s a small piece of the pie, but it’s a margin-heavy piece. If (the if is damn near certain) the iPad Pro does launch, the target will be businesses and non-power users of laptops.
Enterprise is an untapped market for Apple’s tablets. Sure, there are enterprise apps currently, but trying to work on a small screen is a pain in the ass on the best of days.
Me? I’ll be honest. I want to stream Netflix on a bigger screen, watch the game on the TV and text on my iPhone. Yep, I have a problem.
If we’re not all infertile inside of two generations from the radiation these things put out, it’ll be a damn miracle