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Apple to launch 12.9-inch ‘iPad Maxi’ in 2014 to target Windows Ultrabooks

Apple’s iPad range is long overdue a big shake-up, by all accounts. The iPad 4 was a minor refresh launched 18 months after the iPad 3, which marks a delay much longer than Apple’s usual annual update schedule. A giant iPad would shake things up pretty good, right?

Korean publication ETNews reports that Apple will launch a larger iPad early in 2014, featuring a much larger 12.9-inch display. The site refers to the tablet as the ‘iPad Maxi’, though we really can’t see this being the final name, if the product does eventually become a reality.

The site believes that Apple CEO Tim Cook is already in talks with suppliers in Asia in relation to the new larger screen size, with the Cupertino company reportedly readying the new larger tablet for an early 2014 release. Apple’s iPad launch schedule tends to bring a new iPad to market in March/April time, so we should be seeing the ‘iPad Maxi’ around that time.

Why is Apple even considering a giant iPad? Well, the 12.9-inch screen size would put it in direct competition with UItrabooks, the new format of laptop that Microsoft is pushing with Windows 8. Ultrabooks are stylish, ultra slim, light and they tend to offer great battery life – the iPad ticks these boxes but it can’t match the 13-inch screen size an Ultrabook offers. A larger iPad could well be the answer for Apple, and so slowly the idea of an ‘iPad Maxi’ that seemed ridiculous at first starts to make sense.

With close to a year until the rumoured launch we currently know precious little about the rumoured ‘iPad Maxi’. Right now it’s nothing more than a rumour, but the idea has certainly got us thinking – could Apple take on Microsoft and laptops with a tablet?

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