iPad Pro: Birth Of The Super-Tablet

Having had the opportunity to try the iPad Pro (unfortunately without the Pencil) and subsequently had some time to consider the device now that I no longer have it, I think I'm forming a clearer picture of the what kind of device it is and how it fits into the modern device-scape.

In the same way that the iPad cemented and popularised the idea that there was a third device that could sit between smartphones and laptops, providing some of the convenience of the former and some of the capability of the latter, the iPad Pro defines its own class.

It isn't a hybrid computer that blends laptop and tablet functionality, like Microsoft's Surface range. It doesn't perform the same range of tasks anything like as well.

It isn't a laptop replacement either. There are too many compromises that prevent it from being the go-to, single device, for most people.

It is a new and interesting take on what an iPad is, a device that opens up the tablet to different ways of consuming and creating content. Its size demands a trade off. It's less comfortable and elegant to use in the hand - by virtue of its size. Yet it makes for a much better desktop companion - also by virtue of its size. Not forgetting the amount of processing power that Apple has endowed it with.
It is a new class of devices which for want of an existing name I shall call the super-tablet.
So now we have two distinct classes of devices that everyone will have: a smartphone and a PC. In between them we have three categories that fill the gap between them in different and complementary ways: tablet, super-tablet and hybrid.
The super-tablet requires some further development though. For example, there aren't a huge number of applications that fit the super-tablet definition. Also sharing of data between applications in iOS needs to be fixed before Apple can truly have claimed to have conquered this new class.
Apple will fix this and developers will fill the gaps given time. What consumers gain is a wider choice of solutions to fit the many and varied ways of working that exist. And as we all know, choice is a good thing.


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