John Gruber on the 2017 iPad Lineup

John Gruber on what may be coming next in terms of iPad refreshes:

What doesn’t make sense to me is a model new 10.5-inch model. The thought is wise — sustaining the bodily footprint of the current 9.7-inch fashions nevertheless decreasing the bezels and inserting in a good larger present. The proper variety difficulty for iPads and iPhones is barely a show display screen, like the phones in Rian Johnson’s Looper — decreasing the scale of bezels and shifting in the direction of edge-to-edge reveals is inevitable. Even the pixel density math works out for a 10.5-inch present.

What doesn’t make sense to me is the timing. I don’t see how an iPad with an thrilling new design would possibly debut alongside updated variations of the prevailing 9.7-inch and 12.9-inch iPads. Who would buy the updated 9.7-inch iPad Skilled with the traditional bezels if there’s a 10.5-inch model with out bezels? No person.

If Apple goes to put every the second-gen 12.9" and 9.7" iPad Execs as a result of the high-end fashions, I don't see the place a simultaneous launch of a drastically completely totally different 10.5" iPad Pro would fit. But if the second-gen iPad Pros (with the current form factors) move to the low end of the lineup, that means the 10.5" iPad Skilled would possibly introduce an edge-to-edge design with no Dwelling button sooner than the iPhone will get such treatment (supposedly) later this yr.

That idea always appeared odd to me. Traditionally, the iPad doesn't get predominant changes sooner than the iPhone. The iPad tends to look at the iPhone. True Tone and the four-speaker system had been iPad Skilled-first choices, nevertheless they weren't fundamental platform changes harking back to Contact ID or Retina. Every of those bought right here to the iPhone first. (I gained't even rely the Wise Connector proper right here.) An edge-to-edge design with no Dwelling button is a major platform shift – notably if it incorporates new developer APIs, which should launch inside the Spring sooner than iOS 11 if the rumor of an imminent iPad Skilled 10.5" is to be believed. At this stage, I uncover that significantly onerous to think about.

Instead, I think spec-bumps all through the entire iPad lineup would make further sense inside the fast time interval. I can see Apple bringing consistency to the product line (True Tone, USB three speeds, and fast charging for every iPad Skilled model) and together with sooner CPUs/further RAM for extremely efficient iPad-only choices coming with iOS 11. I'm curious to see if Apple will revive the iPad mini by making a 7.9" iPad Skilled and if iPad gear will acquire substantial enhancements the least bit (it'd be good to get an upgraded Wise Cowl or a Pencil with superior battery life).

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