What’s Happening With Apple’s Even Larger iPad Models?
Apple has been rumored to be working on even bigger-screen iPads as early as mid-2021, but amid reports of the 14-inch model being cancelled, what’s happening with the company’s bigger tablet plans?
Rumors so far
Bloomberg’s Mark Gurman was the first to report rumors of Apple designers and engineers exploring iPads with larger screens that could further “blur the lines” between a tablet and a laptop. In January 2022, this was followed by news that multiple suppliers, including BOE and LG, were converting factories to be able to supply Apple with OLED screens around 15 inches in sizes suitable for future iPad models.
The insider known as “Majin Bu” then claimed that Apple was working on an iPad with a 14.1-inch display and M2 chip – a rumor corroborated by highly accurate display industry analyst Ross Young, who added that the device would it had a mini – LED display but no ProMotion for variable refresh rates up to 120 Hz. In July of last year, he changed his prediction, saying that Apple had switched to an LCD screen for the device, the likes of which are used in the iPad mini and iPad Air.
In October, Wayne Ma of The Information reported that Apple is developing a 16-inch iPad that it hopes to release in the fourth quarter of 2023. The upcoming device would have roughly the same screen size as a 16-inch MacBook Pro, offering users a significantly larger canvas to work with.
Finally, Young said in December that Apple had abandoned its plans to launch a 14.1-inch iPad. Any larger iPad models were also missing from Mark Gurman’s latest Apple device guide for this year, saying there will be no significant iPad hardware updates in 2023.
What kind of bigger iPad is Apple planning?
At least one of the larger iPad models Apple was working on last year was clearly rumored to lack ProMotion technology, suggesting it wasn’t an iPad Pro model. An LCD display without ProMotion would have put the 14.1-inch iPad well below the 12.9-inch iPad Pro in terms of specs, indicating it would be more similar to the iPad Air.
The device could have been envisioned as a larger iPad Air option, or even part of a new iPad product line, with different priorities than anything we’ve seen before. At the very least, it seems plausible that such a device will be geared toward creative professionals like graphic designers and designers who can make good use of the large touchscreen area.
While the iPad’s larger screen sizes may bring the iPad closer to the Mac than ever before, it will also likely need further software improvements to properly take advantage of the larger screen . Despite the launch of Stage Manager in iPadOS 16, some users have continued to complain about the iPad’s multitasking experience and inability to take full advantage of its hardware, making it harder to replace a conventional computer than it could be.
Can we still expect larger iPad models?
Despite the turbulent state of rumors about larger iPad models, it seems that Apple is seriously interested in the prospect of launching larger tablets in the future.
The largest iPads that have been available since 2018 have been the 11-inch and 12.9-inch iPad Pro. That means the larger iPads are still smaller than the smaller MacBooks, the M1 MacBook Air and M2 MacBook Pro, which have 13.3-inch displays. Since the 12.9-inch iPad Pro is already in a similar range to the 13.3-inch MacBooks and is said to be growing to 13 inches next year, it seems only a matter of time before Apple offers even larger iPad models.
Bloomberg has repeatedly discussed Apple’s interest in larger iPads, and although the 14.1-inch iPad model that was in the works is now believed to be canceled, the 16-inch model last reported by The Information may still be in active development. .
2023 is expected to be a quiet year for new iPad hardware, with only very minor updates to the iPad mini, iPad Air, and entry-level iPad expected at best. Rumors suggest the 16-inch iPad could arrive by the end of the year, but it’s possible that could move to 2024 – in which case the first larger iPad model could join the redesigned iPad Pro models with OLED screens.