- The iPad Pro has some useful features, but some may find it off-putting.
- Secondly, the iPad Pro is supposed to be a laptop replacement but a lack of ‘power apps’ makes it less attractive.
- The tablet is built for an upscale market segment, judging by the starting price.
In the midst of strong financial performances, iPad sales for Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL) have been retreating downhill recently and have failed to meet estimations by analysts. In the last quarter, 9.9 million tablets were sold indicating a reduction by 20% compared with 2014 sales. Apple is usually great at getting people excited about their new product launches, but the power of the iPad seems to be waning. The long-awaited iPad Pro is finally here, but does it meet expectations of customers? Can it really be used as a replacement for a standard laptop as Tim Cook claims? The success of the iPad Pro will be dependent on how well designers and business people add it to their workflow. Let’s face it: at $799 (excluding case and pen), it isn’t exactly priced to sell in big numbers, or arrest the segmental sales decline.
Majority of Apple customers upgrade their iPhones almost every year, but before they can apply this mentality of upgrading a tablet, it has to be mind-blowing, meet and supersede expectations of a basic smartphone plus PC device. Arguably, the iPad Pro isn’t exceptionally innovative. Apple can boast about its latest processor; the A9X chip, one of the few significant features, as compared to the A8X in iPad Air 2. This new central processing unit works efficiently around 1.8 times better at what it does in comparison to the iPad Air 2. The A9X addition might not be beneficial to everyone because its main function is to only increase the agility of the performance of graphics within the tablet. This is great for people in the line of graphic designers and artists.
Also, Tim Cook is pitching the iPad Pro as a PC replacement. First of all, the tablet uses the same operating unit as most devices; IOS. This can in no way compete with the more powerful and effective operating systems normally found in laptops and computers. Don’t get me wrong, iOS is great but for something to be as close in comparison with a PC device, it has to play up to point and achieve certain requirements. Competitors such as Windows and OS X have shown themselves to be well positioned in this sense. Besides, how do you expect Mac OS users to upgrade to the iPad pro when it is only limited to iOS.
On a positive note, the tablet has other features such as Split-Screen, smart foldable keyboard case, stylus, etc. which make it interesting. But wait a minute, the stylus pencil and the smart keyboard comes separately at difference prices. The pencil is sold for $99 dollars while the smart keyboard is sold for $179 which is not very cost effective. The actual iPad Pro is roughly $800. These prices are quite expensive, totaling to roughly $1078, if you want to have all of it.
Unfortunately, there aren’t many apps built specifically for the iPad Pro, and this can affect uptake. Demand is likely to be low due to the fact that when consumers compare it with the Surface Pro 4, the latter is arguably a more productivity-driven device. Therefore, Apple will have to think long and hard about upgrading the firmware to beat competitors.
Can The iPad Pro Revive Apple Tablet Sales?
In conclusion, the user base is what helps to boost sales of a firm. Nonetheless, the user base of Apple is quite limited. For instance, students would normally go for a better option budget-wise, such as a laptop or Microsoft's Surface Pro 4. Besides, the target audience are likely to be able to afford a Mac, and hence prefer OSX over iOS. Business people and professionals might not find this idea of acquiring the iPad Pro too appealing due to lack of professional programs and essential desktop apps. Even though artists might find it very appealing, budget-friendly devices could serve them well. The iPad Pro is built for media consumption and its productivity clout is questionable. Contentiously, it is just a non-portable tablet with a massive screen and not much to its name.