Image credit: Martin Hajek
Mounting evidence from several sources suggests that the 12.9-inch iPad Pro is just about certain to be released by Apple this fall. While this new product may not, alone, turn the tide of iPad sales, it will launch a new step forward in the evolution of the iPad family.
First, there is evidence from the mobile analytics company AppSee, documented by MacRumors. AppSee reports that a model identifier "iPad6,8" with a resolution of 2732 x 2048 and 265 ppi has appeared in its Internet logs This is likely the 12.9-inch iPad, coined "iPad Pro" by the media.
Second, respected KGI Securities analyst Ming-Chi Kuo told his investors that he expects to see the iPad Pro go into production in September anor October. That means we might see it shipped in time for the holiday season.
Why an iPad Pro?
It would make sense for Apple to announce this product during its (rumored) September event because, even if it won't ship for several months, Apple and its customers need an iPad morale boost and a new hope for the future. Right away.
Also, Apple may have reached the end of the evolutionary size line with a 9.7-inch tablet. It can only be so thin, and that size display can only do so much. Embellishments like Force Touch, a special stylus, more speakers (better placed), more working RAM are all good things, but they tend to be less than the sum of the parts.
In comparison, throughout the evolution of the PC, what has appealed to and enabled customers is a larger display. When we look at the tiny 15-inch monitors provided to some impoverished businesses, doctor offices and government offices, we see a lack of scope and visual power. We are dismayed.
As the size of the display increases with respect to the human eye and hand, there is a distinct invitation to do more. iOS is going to grow along with the iPad family to enable that. See, for example, "Apple’s iPad Pro Will Be an Evolutionary Product." for a list of markets that could greatly benefit from an iPad with a larger display.
At this point, with all the mounting evidence, it's safe to predict that a 12.9-inch iPad will be on Apple's agenda during its September event.