My iPad Pro is where I do much of my writing and note-taking. It’s attached to an external monitor and a keyboard much of the time. When I take it away from my desk it will sit in one of Apples two keyboards.
The Apple Magic Keyboard is for getting work done. It sites better on my lap, though it’s still not great, than the Magic Folio. The Magic Keyboard Folio is what I use when I’m looking at recipes or sitting at the breakfast table reading some news while feeding the kids. I like the extra robustness of the fully enclosed keyboard that comes with the Magic Keyboard Folio.
Both of my keyboards are showing wear as parts of the rubber are pealing off. If I didn’t think that new iPad Pros were coming in a few months I’d look at replacing both keyboards. It’s nice that you can easily replace them, unlike a laptop keyboard, but it’s also a lame material decision that the rubber is pulling away from the chassis of the keyboard. I have a 2010 MacBook Pro that still has a fully functional keyboard.
My iPad 2024 Desires.
My first desire would be for a more robust keyboard option for the iPad Pro. Something like the Brydge Max +, that lets you put the iPad on your lap like a laptop. While I realize this is likely to make the iPad even heavier, the benefit to any magnetic iPad accessory is that you can easily take the iPad off the keyboard and use it as a tablet. Just for fun I pulled out an earlier version of the Brydge keyboard without a trackpad and used it with my iPad around the house over the last week. While I missed the trackpad, the keyboard itself is nice and makes the iPad more useful in many ways.
Go Pro with iPad Pro
First I’d like to see more Pro in the iPad Pro hardware. Lets get two Thunderbolt ports on the device. My preference would be for one on each side when the iPad is in landscape view, but two on the right side would also work. This could help differentiate the iPad Pro from the iPad Air as well since you wouldn’t bring two ports to the Air line.
Apple needs to move the camera to the long edge of the device as well to match what we have on the current base iPad model. ”Pro” video calls look dumb as you are clearly not looking at the person you’re talking to and this would be a quick win to help solve the issue.
Rumours have it that the 12.9” iPad Pro will be going just a bit bigger at 13” and I’m hear for it. In fact I’d love to see a 14” iPad Pro as the largest size. For those that use an iPad Pro as their main device and travel having a larger screen will increase productivity, and if you really don’t want something that large, get the smaller device and maximize for the tablet abilities of the iPad.
With the improvements in iPadOS 17 this year I have far fewer desires for software improvements in iPadOS. I know that anyone recording podcasts would like to see a better audio system, but I don’t do podcasts so it’s not on my list.
I’m a software developer and I’d love to say, let me run a full terminal on my iPad and run local websites with proper developer tools like you see on macOS, but I don’t see that happening ever. I can use tools like Blink Shell or Prompt and connect to remote servers to do coding work, so better shell/coding support is not on my list just because it’s the work I do.
If we do get OLED screens I’d love to see a standby mode in iPadOS 18. Currently I have my iPhone under my main monitor when I’m coding and making that an iPad would give me more information at a glance.
Another nice thing to add would be adding profiles to iPadOS. Currently we have a family Mac Mini that has accounts for the kids and myself. This lets us all use the same system without stepping on each other’s toes. I’d love to see this come to iPadOS, so that we could share some devices and still lock down kids from being able to get into stuff they shouldn’t see.
Purchasing an iPad Pro in 2024
I expect 2024 to be an expensive year for iPad purchases for me. I have a 7-year-old that is using an iPad Mini that is stuck on iPadOS 12 and some apps just aren’t working. If they refresh the iPad Mini before her June birthday I’m likely to purchase a new iPad Mini and pass on my current iPad Mini 6 to her. Even if they don’t refresh the Mini, I’d expect she’s getting an iPad Mini for her main device in June.
I’ll likely purchase whatever the new large iPad Pro is, and quite possibly the 11” version as well. My wife uses a 2018 iPad Pro has her main computer, but it’s just a bit big to go in her bag when she travels for work, which happens every couple months. A slightly smaller iPad Pro would let her get all her work done and still fit in her bag. Purchasing both the big and small iPad Pro would let me experiment with the size of iPad Pro that works for me, while making sure that my wife has the right size for her.
If we replace my wife’s iPad Pro, I can pass her old one down to my 13-year-old, who is now needing more screen space for school, and she hates using the family Mac Mini, just because she knows iOS/iPadOS so much better. If my oldest gets a 2018 iPad Pro then my middle child would get to use the iPad 9th generation that my oldest currently uses.
Budget wise, if the iPad Pro really does go to OLED screens, I’m reserving around $3.5k for each of the iPad Pro models. That would let me get the iPad and a keyboard with each one. I’ll get at least 2TB of storage on each of the iPad Pro’s as 1TB does get a bit tight sometimes when I’m doing YouTube video work.