iPad Air: What Might Be Next For Apple’s Flagship Tablet

Apple has been receiving a lot of short shrift lately, some of it due to accusations that it’s just blatantly ripping off features from competitors like Samsung and Microsoft. One of those features (which has been available for a bit on Samsung Galaxy Note tablets already) is multitasking, a special way to use two apps at once courtesy of “split-screen” viewing (Windows 10 users, think basically what happens when two programs each take half of the screen, only on a smaller screen).

Now, those features may be coming to Apple’s next crop of iPads. According to an article on 9to5mac.com, Apple originally intended to premiere the multi-tasking feature on iPad Airs running iOS 8 in 2014, but the feature was considered too rough around the edges to be released at the time.

The wait seems to be in line with Apple’s overall methodology; while Google/Samsung are sometimes quick to release really cool (but also really unstable) experimental features, Apple seems to take its time trying to push out the best product possible. This isn’t really a surprise given the quality people have come to expect when they purchase an Apple device (it is one of the biggest tech brands in the world, after all).

An article on Time.com noted that, to accomplish the endlessly useful multi-tasking feature, the iPad Air 2 redesign will supposedly have a large, 12-inch screen. The article went on to say that, although Apple has not yet announced the new class of iPad Airs, there’s been speculation an announcement might be coming at the Apple’s Worldwide Developer’s Conference next month.

Larger screens are a feature people have been asking for in the smartphone/tablet/phablet market lately, and an iPad Air with multi-tasking plus a larger screen would more or less put it on par with Samsung’s Galaxy Note phablets. The only thing that remains to be seen is whether Apple will actually unleash these features. Along the same lines, there are also rumors that Apple is working on an iPad Air Pro, which will essentially be its answer to Microsoft’s Surface Pro 3.

Now that Microsoft has entered the tablet game, Apple has been facing a downturn in iPad sales. Re-inventing the iPad might be the way to go if they’re going to remain relevant in the constantly-changing tech field. The way things are currently going for Apple, they will have to make a device so different it’s not accused of being a mass-produced clone of the last iPad, but not so different that loyal fans complain about its inaccessibility and lack of familiar controls.

Is the current Apple design working for them, or would they be better off producing an almost unrecognizable tablet and then stamping their well-known brand name on it?

[Image Credit: 9to5mac.com]