Sales of Apple iPad media tablets have been on the decline for a couple of quarters now. While iPads continue to be popular, it looks like the company needs to address new markets with its slates to increase sales. Rumours about an iPad with a 12.9” display have been circulating for a while and it looks like next year the product may finally materialize.
Bloomberg news-agency reports that Apple’s suppliers are preparing to manufacture 12.9” version of the iPad media tablet in the first quarter of 2015. The new device will join Apple iPad Air with 9.7” display as well as Apple iPad mini with 7.9” screen. Unlike existing slates, which were designed with consumers in mind, the 12.9” flavour is expected to be aimed at businesses and corporations that need larger screens for productivity and who could even replace laptops with tablets.
Earlier this year Apple unveiled a partnership with IBM Corp. that is designed to bring IBM’s apps, big data and analytics capabilities to iPhone and iPad, thus transforming them into true corporate business tools. Theoretically, iPads with 12.9” displays could be more competitive on the market of business-oriented hardware simply because they allow employees to do more.
“We’re expecting larger tablets to do better in the enterprise market,” said Jitesh Ubrani, an analyst at researcher IDC.
Apple did not comment on the news-story.
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KitGuru Says: After Apple signed a deal with IBM, it makes a lot of sense for the company to somewhat alter its product lines to include models aimed at corporate buyers. If previously a 12.9” iPad did not seem a perfectly logical addition to Apple’s family of products, then right now it looks very reasonable.