Apple may be readying an iPad with a larger 16-inch display, according to a report from The Information. Sources familiar with the situation told the outlet Apple could release the device in the fourth quarter of 2023, but this is subject to change.
While rumors about an iPad with a 14- to 15-inch screen have been floating around for some time now, this is the first we’ve heard of a 16-inch iPad. Apple tracker Mark Gurman mentioned a 14- to 15-inch iPad back in 2021, and he recently said a larger model could launch in the next year or two. Supply chain analyst Ross Young backed up this prediction in June and said we could see a 14.1-inch iPad Pro with Mini LEDs and a ProMotion display as soon as next year.
Introducing a premium 16-inch iPad could help add some sense to Apple’s lineup
The 12.9-inch iPad Pro is currently Apple’s biggest model, but tacking on a few extra inches of screen real estate could make the device ideal for creative professionals. It would also make sense for those who want to take advantage of Stage Manager, an iPadOS 16 feature that’s supposed to make switching between apps easier (although Apple still has quite a few kinks it needs to work out). The company added external display support for Stage Manager in the iPadOS 16.2 developer beta on Tuesday, which should give users a large space to work with when using the feature.
Apple shook up its iPad lineup last month with the release of the more expensive entry-level iPad with USB-C as well as the updated 12.9-inch iPad Pro. But as my colleague Monica Chin points out, increasing the entry-level iPad’s price has put it in a strange position. The device, which is now priced at $449 instead of $329, costs nearly as much as an M1 MacBook Air if you add the $249 Magic Keyboard Folio and $99 Apple Pencil (which still doesn’t support USB-C, by the way).
Introducing a premium 16-inch iPad could help add some sense to Apple’s lineup. While it would likely establish a wider price gap between the entry-level iPad and the larger high-end model, it still wouldn’t solve the issue of a missing budget option, which is probably why it’s still selling the $329 ninth-gen device.