An iPad Hybrid May Be on the Horizon

Tim Cook, Apple’s CEO, may be reconsidering his view on a dual function tablet

On many occasions, Tim Cook has indirectly attacked Microsoft’s Windows 8 strategies. Apple’s CEO has repeatedly criticized the Windows 8 hybrid operating system that powers both tablets and traditional PCs. However, there is significant evidence that Apple is about to follow suit.

For some time now, the company has been developing a 12-inch iPad that could theoretically come with a keyboard; doubling as a hybrid piece of equipment. This may suggest that Microsoft was on to something despite the failure of the Surface. Just last year, at the launching of the Surface, Cook made a steady stream of comments criticizing the hybrid.

He indirectly criticized the Surface stating that any two devices could be combined but it does not always make sense to do so. For an example, he used a refrigerator and a toaster. Two kitchen devices that could theoretically be combined but most likely would not sell very well. Apple’s CEO has been right so far in his analogy. Sales of Microsoft’s Surface tablets have not lived up to expectations and back in July, Microsoft wrote down $900 million on Surface hardware.

Tim Cook may be reconsidering, however, or he may think he can do a better job of selling a hybrid device. Nomura analysts say that the company will unveil an iPad hybrid as early as next year and Apple has a patent on such a device. A Chinese tabloid recently published a report stating Apple is presently testing an iPad with a 12 inch display. This would be the perfect screen size for a dual function device.

There may also be a market for such an Apple device. Apple has recently started to bundle iWork, Microsoft Office competitor, with its iOS devices. Some iPad owners that use iWork say it is hard to use without a keyboard and use third-party keyboards. With the advent of increased popularity in iWork, Apple may understand that people who use its iPad like a traditional laptop may represent a market for a hybrid device.

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