Apple’s iPad Pro will eat the MacBook market, and that’s okay

“Apple will eventually cannibalize its Mac business with a 64-bit big-screen iPad capable of running Office and a variety of creative apps,” Jonny Evans writes for Computerworld.

“Strike one comes later this month on October 22 when the company is expected to introduce new iPads alongside OS X Mavericks and the much-anticipated Mac Pro. I’ve written about the Mac side to these plans before, but when it comes to iPads it seems Apple will place 64-bit A7 processors inside the new machines<" Evans writes. "These new chips are delivering significant performance improvements today, while also forming part of the 64-bit future of Apple's plans. Think about it: iOS 8 and iOS 9 will inevitably exploit the potential of 64-bit, apps will benefit, and these devices will become ever better replacements for a PC. You get a 64-device today and should recognize that you're now plugged into Apple's upgrade cycle plans across the next two years. And in these plans the iPad is going Pro."

Evans writes, "Certainly these things would take a chunk from Apple's laptop sales, but so what? PC sales are shrinking already. We know full well that Apple doesn't mind losing sales in one category to feed them in another. While no one seems to expect a 13-inch iPad will appear at Apple's October 22 launch this month, it could still make sense — but given the convergences listed above introduction of such systems will make ever more sense in the 12 months ahead."

Much more in the full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: And now, a few words from Mr. Myopic:


    1. No doubt the MB Air is a great machine but let’s assume this 13″ iPad Pro becomes reality. In light of that situation, I don’t see a real future for the MB Air. In a couple of years time, this is how I see the markets segmenting in terms of tablets & notebooks;

      Consumer – iOS / iPad / iPad Pro /
      Pro users – OSX / MB Pro /

        1. I’d disagree on that. So many pundits have the idea of the inevitable single-devise user — Apple has proved this an obsolete construct. Tha Apple ecosystem is also a suite of devices comprising a single ‘virtual’ coomputer. I have an iPhone for my bus commute, iPad for mobility in meetings, classes and presentations and unplanned writing sessions, an Air for portable needs requiring iWorks or iMovie projects and shortly I’ll get a Mac Pro with 27″ screen for large document 2-up full page editing and research. All specialist needs. That’s the beauty, Apple sells need specific tools that work like a single computer. At any time or place I’m using the perfect tool.

          1. All good points.

            “…shortly I’ll get a Mac Pro with 27″ screen for large document 2-up full page editing and research.”

            You really need a Mac Pro for that? I would think a high-end 27″ iMac would suffice. Just a thought.

  1. It’s a no brainer really. The number of iPads that might be potentially sold is massively higher than the number of Macs that might be sold, so there is more money to be made from iPads than MacBooks. That doesn’t mean that Apple should become less interested in Macs, but iPads are already a very big earner and should continue to expand their market for some time.

    So long as Apple continues to make a decent margin on every device that it sells ( and it certainly does make a good margin ), it really doesn’t matter what those devices are called or which segment they appear in. iPads are probably a better business proposition for Apple anyway as users are likely to replace iPads more frequently than they would a laptop or desktop.

  2. The fact that Ballmer’s is on his way out, and the BOD is asking for Gate’s departure pretty much says it all. I’ve never seen hubris on such a mass scale. We’re they jealous, in denial, or just plain stupid? I think it was a combination of the three. By by boys, don’t let the door hit you where the sun never shines on the way out.

  3. The hole in that theory for me is the keyboard. The soft keyboard is fine for entering names and passwords, or typing a brief addition to your shopping list, but for more than a few words, I want a real keyboard that I can feel the individual keys. I hate looking at the keys while I type. I don’t see an iPad, even with a magnetically attached keyboard, working that well for say writing an essay, let alone a book, or doing a lot of data entry. For me the iPad is 99% about consuming information. I read this article on the iPad, but went to the desktop machine to type this.

    1. I agree that text entry is one of the iPad’s glaring weaknesses, even with a wireless keyboard. Since there is no screen cursor, typing long form text—especially editing that text—is a slow and tedious process. Very hard to understand how such a text entry device will ever “replace” laptops”.

      And let’s not even mention the iPad’s other glaring weakness: Copying files to and from the device. I love my iPad; but for serious work, I’ll take my laptop any day!

  4. You know I’ve never understood the “no input” or “it has to have a keyboard” mentality. I concerned about that when I first bought the iPad 1 but after 1 minute of using it I thought “this could work”. After 1 hour, I realized “I don’t need a keyboard”.

    I also cannot understand the dissatisfaction with iOS 7, it functions so much better then 6. It is almost like people who dislike it, dislike because of minor opinions of its appearance and really haven’t used it enough to realize that some of the design choices are there to make it easier to use.

    Right now I’m thinking a touchscreen Mac Air that splits in half would be the ideal laptop. This doesn’t reduce the usefulness of an iPad. Sometimes you need the power of a truck. The Mac Air split would have the power of a laptop, but still you could consume media. Most of the time you would use it like a keyboardless tablet, some of the time with more power and a keyboard like a laptop, and some of the time plugged into a bigger monitor. I’m thinking an A7/M7, batteries,1or 2gb Ram, 64gb storage and touchscreen in the top, and an Intel i7m, keyboard, trackpad, 16gb ram, 256gb or more SSD, ports and a NVIDIA Graphics co-processor in the bottom with the option to run OS X or iOS when snapped together. Of course seamless intergeneration between both halves, itunes, and iCloud. ASUS has something like this but they have fallen on their faces with it. Not as bad as “Galaxy Gear” but not usable at all like I have in mind. I’m after an ultra portable high powered long lasting device that takes care of all the BS in the background and lets me do what I want to do without thinking about it.

  5. An iPad “capable” of running Office??? It is the other way around. Is Microsoft “capable” of building an Office suite that:
    1) would run on iOS
    2) of sufficient quality and that Apple would approve it for the App store
    The answer so, of course, NO.

    1. Later in the article the author wasn’t talking about MS Office – he’s speculating that Apple will offer iWork to new iPad buyers for free, like they did with new iPhones recently. He refers to these as “Office compatible productivity applications”.

      1. Especially since Excel was originally made for the Mac. Excel is a good program. Not as pretty as Numbers, but extremely powerful. Numbers would gain more acceptance if it was more like Excel.

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