Apple is short of months to bring the iPad Pro 2022 to market in 2022, but they are said to arrive “in a few days” – and it is said Apple is also working on a new role for all of its iPad tablets.
It comes from the usually reliable Mark Gurman at Bloomberg (opens in a new tab)which claims that the refreshed 11-inch and 12.9-inch iPad Pro will use the latest Apple M2 processor to increase performance by around 20%. The design is said to be similar to the current 11-inch iPad Pro and the 12.9-inch iPad Pro.
Gurman says the new tablets don’t guarantee the actual event – in line with previous predictions – and while he says there is work going on on a new entry-level iPad with USB-C and a revamped design, he doesn’t specify when it will come out (we think it may come at the same time as the iPad Pro).
Gurman has another interesting piece of iPad information to reveal: Apple is apparently also working on an iPad dock accessory that will turn its tablets into smart displays. It won’t be coming this month, but it may come out at some point next year.
This is a market category that we’ve been expecting Apple for a while: previous leaks (also from the same source, incidentally) pointed to a HomePod with display or an Apple TV 4K with display, and now it seems Apple could approach the product under a different angle.
It fits with the approach taken by the Google Pixel Tablet. When the budget plan finally comes out, we know it will come with an accessory that will fundamentally turn it into the Google Nest Hub when the tablet is docked.
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No wonder Apple plans to launch a dock that turns the iPad into a smart display – an idea so obvious, we even thought about it. The iPad already comes with the Home app and Siri on board, so all the basics are there: all you need is a power source and some extra audio.
As we mentioned, this is the approach Google is taking with its Pixel tablet, but Amazon is already there – Amazon Fire HD boards come with accessories that turn the tablets into Echo Show displays when they’re docked. It’s just a matter of a few interface tweaks.
This means your tablet can perform all the functions you need when you carry it around at home, and at the same time doubles as a home screen when you’re busy doing other things – it’s not that many of us take our tablets from home.
The only problem is that those smart displays that are really just docked may require a new name – to distinguish them from non-detachable smart displays – so any suggestions are welcome. Presumably smart battery-powered displays that can be carried around would be the logical next step …