Mobile // Mobile Business
News
8/27/2014
01:56 PM
Connect Directly
RSS
E-Mail
50%
50%

Apple Preps Jumbo iPad

iPad-maker will pitch the tablet to businesses as a potential laptop replacement.

iPhone 6: 8 Ideas Ripped From Rivals?
iPhone 6: 8 Ideas Ripped From Rivals?
(Click image for larger view and slideshow.)

Apple is preparing a larger version of its iPad for release in 2015. The company remains bullish on the tablet market, despite a dip in shipments in recent quarters. The bigger iPad, with a screen as big as those of laptops, could help Apple stir up fresh interest in its tablets.

The new iPad will feature a screen measuring 12.9 inches across the diagonal, according to sources cited by Bloomberg. Apple's suppliers are preparing to manufacture the device, with production expected to kick off during the first quarter. Bloomberg reports that Apple has been working with its suppliers for at least a year on the product.

Apple's current tablet lineup includes the 7.9-inch iPad Mini and 9.7-inch iPad Air. Much of the tablet market's softness this year has been in the smaller segment, with consumers opting for big phones and big tablets. Apple could be looking to capitalize on this trend, but the timing is probably coincidental. Bloomberg said Apple CEO Tim Cook is "working to shake up the iPad line." Speaking to Re/Code, Apple's Cook said, "We couldn't be happier with how we've done with the first four years of the iPad. I'd call what's going on recently a speed bump, and I've seen that in every category."

Apple's iPad business is second only to the iPhone. The iPhone is Apple's chief revenue generator. Apple is also preparing its standard once-yearly refresh to the smaller two tablets, which are expected to arrive before the holidays.

(Source: Apple)
(Source: Apple)

[Reports say the larger iPhone display may be delayed. See Will iPhone 6 Production Problems Hurt Availability?]

Apple sees the larger iPad as a business-class productivity machine. Earlier this year Apple partnered with IBM, a move it said could "be a catalyst for future iPad growth." The larger tablet could replace laptops in some instances, though some mobile pros may prefer to have a device with a real keyboard. It wouldn't be surprising at all for Apple to sell a Bluetooth keyboard as an accessory to the larger tablet. A large-screen tablet with a full-sized keyboard certainly blurs the line between tablets and laptops, at least as far as the pros and cons of their form factors are concerned.

Apple is looking to refresh its laptop lineup, as well. The company has long been expected to debut a smaller, 12-inch MacBook Air, possibly with a Retina display. This device may arrive by the end of the year, as could a refreshed version of the MacBook. A new report suggests Apple will do away with the non-Retina version of the 13-inch MacBook Pro and replace it with a slimmer device. Apple likes to have clear lines classifying its devices, though, and it is hard to see the company offering a 12-inch Retina MacBook Air alongside a 13-inch Retina MacBook Pro.

Apple is holding an event September 9, but it will be reserved for the new iPhones. Don't expect to see the new tablets until October.

Cloud Connect (Sept. 29 to Oct. 2, 2014) brings its "cloud-as–business–enabler" programming to Interop New York for the first time in 2014. The two-day Cloud Connect Summit will give Interop attendees an intensive immersion in how to leverage the cloud to drive innovation and growth for their business. In addition to the Summit, Interop will feature five cloud workshops programmed by Cloud Connect. The Interop Expo will also feature a Cloud Connect Zone showcasing cloud companies' technology solutions. Register with Discount Code MPIWK or $200 off Total Access or Cloud Connect Summit Passes.

Eric is a freelance writer for InformationWeek specializing in mobile technologies. View Full Bio

Comment  | 
Print  | 
More Insights
Comments
Newest First  |  Oldest First  |  Threaded View
PedroGonzales
50%
50%
PedroGonzales,
User Rank: Ninja
8/28/2014 | 3:35:00 PM
Re: Overlap
a regular keyboard and mouse still beats a tablet.  I think tablets are good for consuming media, not for doing office work.  I think Microsoft is in the right direction if they want to merge tablets and laptops.  Surface comes with a keyboard and a stylus pen to handle surface touch screen capabilities.
Lorna Garey
50%
50%
Lorna Garey,
User Rank: Author
8/28/2014 | 9:04:00 AM
Re: Overlap
I'm sure it's generational, but I find a touch interface good for a few things, but overall, give me a compact trackpad and physical keyboard.
jgherbert
50%
50%
jgherbert,
User Rank: Ninja
8/27/2014 | 10:33:17 PM
Overlap
So the rumors have a 12" Macbook Air (still an "Air"?) and a 12.9" iPad. Seems odd that they'd have the biggest iPad being larger than the smallest (future) Macbook. And which do they want people to buy? I am not a fan of the Microsoft OS, but the Surface 3 thingy they're advertising does look pretty cool. So rather than a 12" MacBook fighting for market share against a 12.9" iPad, perhaps Apple needs to find a way to unify those products.

Or maybe we all love laptops more than I think we do.

jgherbert
50%
50%
jgherbert,
User Rank: Ninja
8/27/2014 | 10:28:57 PM
Re: Taking wagers
@Lorna> "And it's more likely that your next Mac will run iOS, no!!!?"

 

Well I've heard that rumor, but then again I've seen Windows 8 and how the idea of a unified operating system went down with the world. We've discussed this here before I think, but the needs of a touch interface are really quite different to those of a mouse/trackpad/otherpointingdevice-based interface, and trying to make them all look the same is, at best, a wildly risky proposition :)
Laurianne
IW Pick
100%
0%
Laurianne,
User Rank: Author
8/27/2014 | 4:26:19 PM
Re: Taking wagers
I dislike that Microsoft charges extra for that keyboard. Let's not imitate that model, please. Next it will be called a "typing fee".
Thomas Claburn
50%
50%
Thomas Claburn,
User Rank: Author
8/27/2014 | 4:26:06 PM
Re: Taking wagers
I think Apple would have to do it for $999 or less. Otherwise the pushback will be too much.
Lorna Garey
50%
50%
Lorna Garey,
User Rank: Author
8/27/2014 | 4:16:01 PM
Re: Taking wagers
Microsoft charges extra for the Surface keyboard. I can't see Apple bundling it, though who knows?

And it's more likely that your next Mac will run iOS, no!!!?
DonaldD113
50%
50%
DonaldD113,
User Rank: Apprentice
8/27/2014 | 4:13:57 PM
Re: Taking wagers
For that price, it better have a keyboard and run OS X.
Laurianne
50%
50%
Laurianne,
User Rank: Author
8/27/2014 | 3:58:44 PM
Re: Taking wagers
What do you think, readers? Is Lorna in the right neighborhood? Also, is the size right?
Lorna Garey
50%
50%
Lorna Garey,
User Rank: Author
8/27/2014 | 3:42:41 PM
Taking wagers
Shall we start a pool on the cost of a 13" iPad? I'm in for $1,499 - $1,699 with keyboard.
InformationWeek Elite 100
InformationWeek Elite 100
Our data shows these innovators using digital technology in two key areas: providing better products and cutting costs. Almost half of them expect to introduce a new IT-led product this year, and 46% are using technology to make business processes more efficient.
Register for InformationWeek Newsletters
White Papers
Current Issue
InformationWeek Tech Digest September 18, 2014
Enterprise social network success starts and ends with integration. Here's how to finally make collaboration click.
Flash Poll
Video
Slideshows
Twitter Feed
InformationWeek Radio
Sponsored Live Streaming Video
Everything You've Been Told About Mobility Is Wrong
Attend this video symposium with Sean Wisdom, Global Director of Mobility Solutions, and learn about how you can harness powerful new products to mobilize your business potential.