More Evidence Surfaces For Apple ‘iPad Pro’ Tablet

Matt Broersma is a long standing tech freelance, who has worked for Ziff-Davis, ZDnet and other leading publications

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Newly published photo appears to display a manufacturing mould for an extra-large iPad aimed at the enterprise

More evidence has surfaced for a possible extra-large “iPad Pro” tablet from Apple, in the form of a photo of a manufacturing mould for the rear shell of such a device.

The photo, which appeared on Chinese messaging site Weibo, shows a mould for what appears to be a tablet measuring between 12 inches and 13 inches and bearing a faintly visible Apple logo.

ipad_pro_shell_moldEnterprise tablet

Rumours of an oversized tablet began with a Wall Street Journal report in July 2013 that Apple was testing 12.9in iPad displays. In November 2014 Japanese website Macotakara claimed that the screen for the iPad Pro would be a smaller 12.2in.

That would still be significantly larger than the iPad Air 2’s 9.7in screen, equal to that of Samsung’s Android-powered Galaxy Note Pro and comparable to the 12in display of Microsoft’s Surface Pro 3.

The iPad Air 2, released in October, measures 9.4in by 6.7in by 0.24in.

In December, Japanese publication Mac Fan claimed the upcoming tablet will feature a faster A9 processor and may arrive between April and June of this year.

Aluminium prototype

In May 2014 a photograph of an aluminium industrial prototype for a possible 12.9in iPad surfaced on Weibo, appearing to be a reference unit for the design of cases and other accessories.

Cupertino-based Apple has long been rumoured to be planning a larger tablet for the education and corporate markets. As part of its enterprise efforts, Apple recently formed a partnership with IBM to help stimulate the development of business software for iOS and to sell iPhones and iPads to large businesses.

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