One of the well known Apple analysts claims this week that Apple may be reading a larger iPad with a 12.9-inch display and develop an advanced stylus accessory that will make it easier to perform more advanced tasks on the new device.
KGI Securities‘ Ming-chi Kuo, in a research note reported by Apple fan site AppleInsider, claims that his own research as well as several recent Apple patents (see end of this article for links) led him to believe that the stylus and iPad Pro will arrive sometime before the end of June.
12.9-inch iPad Pro with stylus accessory
Kuo has a fair track record on Apple predictions, but he says the stylus itself will be an optional accessory so as not to increase the price of the iPad Pro.
He also expects the initial version of the stylus to be quite simple, with more sensors added later to enable “3D handwriting”. Kuo adds that the pen will be charged via a Lightning connector, because wireless options would be prohibitively expensive and inhibit the design. It’s not clear at this stage if the stylus would also work with other versions of the iPad.
“We believe that the stylus could improve the experience of users”, he said.
Thai Tech already reported on the iPad Pro last year, but it seems that more people are now starting to believe that the new device is in the works.
Kuo says that the stylus isn’t intended to be a major source of revenue, but something that will improve the user experience, especially for corporate users and those in education.
“We don’t foresee significant sales of an optional stylus in 2015 and forecast unit shipments of 2-2.5 million…but we believe that the stylus could improve the experience of users, however, and will likely help Apple develop specific customer groups such as the corporate sector and educational institutions.”
Now that Apple has partnered with IBM for enterprise apps, it’s perhaps no surprise that a stylus and iPad Pro could be on the cards.
Analysts: reliable sources?
Do these analysts have a reliable track record? And why does anyone believe what they say? Well Kuo has already successfully predicted many of products and features that Apple has actually released. For example, he correctly said that the iPad Air 2 would have an anti-reflective screen and a gold colour option, the A8 processor and Touch ID fingerprint sensing capabilities.
However, just about anyone could have predicted those, but he did also predict the minor update to the company’s iPad Mini, and accurate information about the forthcoming Apple Watch.
Earlier last year, he also predicted the iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus specifications with a great deal of success, almost five months before they were actually released.
So it seems that Kuo is fairly well connected with people that know what Apple is doing in the future. He apparently does his own research rather than relying on leaks, so of course he may be incorrect this time. But there’s a good chance that the stylus could certainly be on the cards, as well as the iPad Pro and new 12-inch MacBook Air that is rumoured to be released sometime this year.
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Apple has recently filed and been awarded several patens for stylus products that add some credibility to the latest claims regarding an iPad Pro, such as a patent for a communicating stylus and another patent application in December 2014.
Do you think the iPad Pro and stylus rumours are true? Would the iPad benefit from a stylus? Let us know in the comments below.