Apple’s rumored 13-inch iPad rumored to sport 4K UltraHD display

“The other shoe to drop on Tim Cook’s ‘big plans’ for Apple in 2014 is resolution,” Anthony Wing Kosner reports for Forbes. “Specifically, rumors from the Chinese site Pad News and Foxxcon indicate that the forthcoming ‘iPad Pro’ will ditch retina in favor of 4K (as in 4,000 pixels on the longer side.)”

“A report from Hamza Kahn at the News Tribe based on the Chinese supply-chain information says that Foxxcon already has a 12.9-inch 2K iPad Pro prototype and that a 4K with a possible resolution of 4096 by 3072 is in the works,” Kosner reports. “The iPad Air’s retina display is already at 2K resolution (2048 by 1536), so the difference between 2K and retina is just a matter of terminology.”

“Having a 4K display in your hands is a good candidate for ‘big’ in Tim Cook’s terms and would create a wow factor that investors keep claiming Apple needs to restart its growth curve,” Kosner reports. “The really big challenge for Apple with such a display would be to keep it thin like the new iPad Air.”

Read more in the full article here.

15 Comments

  1. If they can incorporate displays with a resolution of 4096 x 3072, then that would be 4x the pixels ( twice the resolution in each axis ) of the existing iPad Air. Going for twice the pixel count as a previous model is how Apple likes to increase screen sizes because it makes it much simpler to scale previous apps to fit the new screen.

    On the other hand, 4K formats have a resolution of either 4096 x 2160 for movie theatres, or 3840 x 2160 for consumer screens, so the rumoured 13″ iPad screen would not conform to either of those standards, but of course it does exceed both of them.

  2. The problem for Apple if they do this is not specifically keeping it thin but maintaining its excellent battery life. OF course that may affect the thickness and weight. I would think the weight limit to meet/beat would be the original iPad. A larger/denser screen at the weight of the original iPad would be hard to do.

    1. But at this point, there are probably ten to one, perhaps more, people who would prefer better battery life over a thinner device. Real-life function matters.

      To look at it another way: one of the chief complaints about the iPhone is its inability to last a full day doing serious work – GPS navigation for example. Hence there are 3rd party battery packs filling the need that Apple refused to support. With a bigger screen, Apple would have no excuse not to back it up with a serious battery that truly would make the big iPad a “pro” model.

  3. As a proponent for the iPad mini before there was one, and a proponent of a larger iPhone, I gotta say I don’t see a 13″ iPad becoming reality. I don’t see demand for it like the iPad mini or larger iPhone. I’ll believe it when I see it. I say we will see an Apple TV before we see a 13″ 4k iPad.

  4. would I want a 4K display on an iPad? How the fuck are developers going to develop 4K apps when 4K monitors are super expensive and neither the iMac or MacBook line of portables support 4K screen resolution.

  5. I think these would be a good replacement for my MacBook Pro assuming it performs as a convertible Mac when the tablet is attached to a keyboard perhaps even one with a an Intel chip in the keyboard and mousepad (or virtual lower interaction surface) for legacy apps.

    I think the point of diminishing returns would be a pixel density above 600 ppi for all screen sizes.

  6. Actually, I’m not sure I see the point of a 4K screen on a 13″ display, quite aside from the additional cost and electronics upgrades to support it.

    Even on my iPad Air I have to take off my glasses and hold the device inches from my eyes to see the pixels.

    While I’m sure this will become the standard down the road, making an iPad heavier to support a higher density screen just for bragging rights is a very un-Apple thing to do. If there is a 13″ iPad Pro in 2014, I doubt the 4K screen will be included in the first version.

  7. The question one has to ask is: what kind of previously difficult, burdensome or impossible use-cases does a 4K-pad make easier (or possible at all), that aren’t as “nice” with the existing iPad Air?

    Suggestions?

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