Apple develops iPhones, iPads, MacBooks and a few other devices that are designed to work perfectly together. However, the company pays meticulous attention to ensuring that the individual products do not cannibalize each other. That could change with the iPad successor. Then the new tablet and MacBook could compete with each other.
Apple develops 2-in-1 tablet with macOS operating system
So far the boundaries are clear. The iPad is a tablet that you can optionally use with a pen and connect a keyboard, but which runs iPadOS, which is somewhat limited in terms of functionality. The MacBook, on the other hand, is the working device with a keyboard and no touchscreen, but it is operated with the full macOS operating system. Now a patent reveals that Apple is planning a combination of both devices:
It’s basically a MacBook with the display detachable and usable as an iPad. Thanks to the special hinge, it can be inserted in both directions and used in different ways. The next-gen iPad is said to run macOS or a very similar operating system. A combination of macOS and iPadOS would be conceivable. The full-fledged operating system is used when you want to work with a keyboard and touchpad, while iPadOS makes it easier to use on the go.
From a purely technical point of view, that would no longer be a problem. Both the MacBook and the iPad run on Apple’s M1 processors. Both operating systems are supported. So all options are open to Apple.
Even the new iPad Air 5 now runs on Apple’s M1 chip:
Is a 2-in-1 iPad really coming from Apple?
At the moment we would not expect that to happen. The iPad and MacBook are selling very well independently. So there’s no reason to cannibalize yourself with it. It is clear, however, that Apple is keeping all options open with such a patent and preparing for the future, when exactly such a next-generation iPad will be necessary in order to be able to continue to exist on the market.