Second Source Claims Apple Will Launch 10.5-inch iPad in 2017

A report from the Taiwanese supply chain emerged overnight claiming Apple will release a 10.5-inch “education and enterprise” tablet as part of its iPad line-up next year (via DigiTimes). The 10.5-inch iPad is said to be equipped with Apple’s A10X processor, also expected in next year’s refreshed line-up, with production slated to begin next month.

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Apple is launching the 10.5-inch iPad mainly because 10-inch and larger tablets have been popular among enterprises and the education sector in the US, the sources said. Its existing 9.7-inch iPad may be too small and the 12.9-inch iPad Pro too expensive for such procurement, the sources indicated.

A number of claims have emerged recently suggesting Apple plans to extend its iPad line-up with a new tablet dimension in the 10-inch range. Earlier this month, Barclays analysts claimed Apple will release a bezel-free 10.9-inch model alongside refreshed 9.7-inch and 12.9-inch iPads, citing its own supply chain sources, while in October Japanese website Mac Otakara said a new 10.1-inch iPad Pro would launch in early 2017.

However, today’s report marks the second independent source to suggest Apple plans to introduce a 10.5-inch mid-tier iPad. In August, KGI Securities analyst Ming-Chi Kuo said the same thing and earmarked the same A10X processor for the tablet, suggesting there may be more substance to this particular rumor.

In addition, Kuo claimed Apple will also launch lower-price versions of the 9.7-inch iPad. Today’s sources corroborate that claim also, citing Apple’s apparent intention “to compete with Android models”.

Shipments of the rumored 10.5-inch iPad are expected to reach two million units in the first quarter of 2017 and may reach 5 to 6 million units in the year, DigiTimes sources said.

More “revolutionary” changes to iPads, including a switch to OLED displays, are expected in 2018, according to Kuo’s earlier report.

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Three New iPads Said to Launch in March, Including Bezel-Free 10.9-Inch Model

Apple will launch a trio of new iPad Pro models in March, including refreshed 9.7-inch and 12.9-inch versions and an all-new bezel-free 10.9-inch model, according to Barclays Research analysts Blayne Curtis, Christopher Hemmelgarn, Thomas O’Malley, and Jerry Zhang, citing sources within the company’s Asian supply chain.

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In a research note obtained by MacRumors, the analysts said the 10.9-inch model’s borderless design will allow for it to be the same physical size as the current-generation 9.7-inch iPad Pro. That means the display itself will need to have an edge-to-edge design, possibly signaling the removal of the Home button.

Multiple rumors have claimed Apple is developing a new iPad in the 10-inch range, but the exact screen size has varied in each report. KGI Securities analyst Ming-Chi Kuo said a new 10.5-inch iPad Pro will launch in 2017, while Japanese website Mac Otakara said a new 10.1-inch iPad Pro will launch in early 2017.

Barclays, like Kuo, expects the new 9.7-inch iPad Pro to be a “low-cost” model alongside the 7.9-inch iPad mini, which the analysts do not believe will be refreshed alongside the larger tablets. Instead, the research note said Apple will continue to produce and sell the iPad mini 4, released in September 2015.

Mac Otakara previously said the 12.9-inch iPad Pro will feature a True Tone display like its current 9.7-inch counterpart, using advanced four-channel ambient light sensors to automatically adapt the color and intensity of the display to match the light in the surrounding environment.

That report said all three new iPad Pro models will gain quad microphones, compared to the current dual setup, and retain 3.5mm headphone jacks.

The 12.9-inch iPad Pro is also said to gain the 9.7-inch model’s same 12-megapixel rear-facing iSight camera and True Tone flash.

More “revolutionary” changes to iPads, including a switch to OLED displays, are expected in 2018, according to Kuo’s earlier report.

Astropad turns your iPad into a professional Mac drawing tablet, download it now for $10

Astropad for iPad has dropped down to just $9.99 on the App Store, which is 50% less than its usual price and the best deal we’ve seen since its initial launch offer. This productivity app allows you to “draw directly into Photoshop right from your iPad” and “supports all pressure sensitive pens available for iPad.” The latest Astropad update brought added functionality for iPad Pro and Apple Pencil users. Make sure you download the free Mac companion app before getting started.

(FYI, that slick iPad drawing stand shown in the video below is Twelve South’s ParcSlope.)

Astropad transforms your iPad into a professional graphics tablet for your Mac. Use your iPad to draw directly into Photoshop and any other Mac creative tools you know & love.

Finally, you can use your iPad as a drawing tablet for your favorite Mac tools including: Photoshop, Illustrator, Lightroom, Corel Painter, Manga Studio, Pixelmator, Mischief and any other Mac app you like! Whether you are a professional digital artist or a hobbyist, Astropad offers the most powerful way to draw on your Mac using your iPad.

Built for the needs of creative professionals, Astropad is true to your source material with color corrected output and retina resolution. What you see on your iPad is the same as on your Mac.

Astropad features breakthrough network technology that keeps up with you even when wirelessly drawing. It really works, allowing you to work from your desk or the sofa.

Logitech K380 keyboard puts 3 devices at your fingers

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Not one, not two, but three devices, all commanded by a single keyboard.

Three Bluetooth presets on one thoughtfully designed, battery operated, portable input device.

I’ve been using the Logitech K380 for a little while and I still can’t get my head around why someone would need to hook up a keyboard to three different devices at the same time. However, if you do, this keyboard is a no-brainer.

The triple Bluetooth functionality is the “gimmick” Logitech uses to draw attention to this particular tool for writers (or anybody with multiple gadgets yearning for input). To me it seems over the top, but it works flawlessly, connecting you with the touch of a button to any of three different devices, whether computers (Mac, Windows and Chrome OS) or mobile (iOS and Android).

Whether you need that kind of connectivity or not, the K380’s build quality, minimal heft and slightly angled, full-size keys will keep you coming back for more. Especially at a street price of about $30.

Logitech is a frontrunner in peripherals and the quality and value of the K380 Multi-Device Bluetooth Keyboard makes it clear why.

Price: $39.99 $29.99

This tablet stand solves one of the iPad’s biggest annoyances

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If you’ve had an iPad for at least a couple of years now, you’ve probably noticed one of the major ergonomic issues with it: there’s no perfect way to hold it. You can hold your iPad to use it which always feels just slightly awkward, place it on a table which hunches you over and strains the back of your neck, or put it on your lap and fold your legs up which just feels ridiculous. A Kickstarter project called the Tstand aims to solve this problem.

The Tstand is a new, adjustable tablet stand that can dramatically decrease muscle tension when you’re trying to do something as simple as watch a show on Netflix. The stand has a foldable, clamshell design that can match any viewing angle you need.

If you rest the stand on your stomach while you lay in bed, you can watch a show without having to lift your head or keep your arms up. You can also position the stand so that your iPad elevates right next you on the bed while you lay on your side.

Swivel the bottom half of the stand behind the tablet and you can set it up to act as a computer monitor on your desk. Just slide a keyboard underneath and reach up to touch the screen as necessary. The stand will perfectly position the tablet at eye level so you don’t have to slouch over.

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I was sent a pre-production model to test out how well the Tstand works and I have to say, I’m totally impressed. I didn’t realize how often I do put strain on the back of my neck when I use my iPad. It’s my computing device of choice when I’m leaving my home, yet it often winds up on the table with my Smart Cover folded up for a slight angle. Still, the angle requires me to put my head down and stare uncomfortably.

My favorite use case for the Tstand is easily in bed. While I imagine someone out there will probably take advantage of the Tstand for naughty purposes here, I quite enjoyed watching an entire episode of How to Get Away with Murder on it, which by the way is a fantastic show. I didn’t need to prop up my pillows or hold my iPad up. I just angled the Tstand so the iPad was aimed right at my face while still remaining comfortably distant. I enjoyed using it at eye level on my desk for a bit too, and also found it makes a great tripod to film with the iPad or FaceTime while sitting.

If you don’t have an iPad, the Tstand adjusts for any tablet as small as seven inches and as big as 13 inches, so that includes the new iPad Pro and Microsoft Surface Pro 4 too.

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I did find that the build quality of the Tstand could be a bit better. It’s not bad, but getting my iPad mini in and out of the holder made me nervous that it would snap somehow. The mechanism for adjusting the angle isn’t as buttery smooth as I would prefer either.

Still, I loved spending time with it. In many ways, the Tstand feels like the missing piece between a tablet and the way we all try to interact with one. It also does wonders for my neck. With just a little over a week left in the Kickstarter campaign, you can head over there to fund the project for as little as $37.

 

Solartab, the premium solar charger/battery for iPad and iPhone that actually works

If you’ve ever tried to charge your iPhones/iPads/etc. directly from a small solar panel you probably know it is pretty difficult. Even with direct sunlight, you aren’t likely to be able to charge the device reliably. Most USB-charged devices require a minimum of 5W (5Vx1A) of continuous power to even register a charge. Then a cloud comes or the sun moves and you aren’t charging anymore.

Adding a battery to the mix helps, especially if the battery is big and can charge the device on its own without any sun. But most of the solar/battery combos fall into 2 categories: Either messy because they are a bulky 2 step solution or the solar panel is too smallto make a meaningful charge and you are mostly using it like a regular USB battery.

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SolarTab is a break of fresh air here. It is a relatively big 5.5W solar panel built on a thin 13,000mAh battery enclosure that fits in an included Moleskine-esque case. Size-wise, think the original iPad with a nice leather case and a huge solar panel instead of a screen…

Key Details:

  • 5.5W Solar panel w/dual 2.1A USB ports
  • 13,000mAh battery will provide a few full iPads worth of power when the sun goes out
  • Fits perfectly in bags next to books and iPads
  • Looks great and built to last

This is the perfect large battery for a number of reasons. Because it is so thin, it fits like a book (or iPad!) in a backpack, briefcase or large purse. Most importantly, it always has power. I leave mine on my windowsill  for when I need to go into the city (usually 1-2 times per week). My iPhone and iPad usually die with heavy use so it’s a lifesaver for my trips home. What’s great is that I don’t ever have to plug it in. A few days in the window will have me back to full for my next trip.

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This is a premium product with a Apple-inspired 4-LED battery indicator and solar charging indicator. It will charge a dead iPhone or more times to full. An iPad at least twice.

What’s perfect about the size is that the solar panel in direct sunlight can charge an iPhone or iPad by itself (5Vx1A speed) but you shouldn’t ever need this with the monster 13,000mAh battery. There are 2 separate USB out ports which each give you a relatively powerful 2.1A x 5 V or 11 Watts.  If you need to add charge manually you can do so via Micro-USB.

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What’s more, with a USBA to USB-C cable, you can power (but not charge) the new MacBooks or a Chrome Pixel for about double their normal battery life. If the MacBook is asleep then you can charge the internal battery. It would be nice if on a future version the USB ports could support the 2.4A for the fastest speed on current iPads and more for the MacBook.

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Overall, I’m very satisfied with the SolarTab. It really nails the solar-battery USB charger unlike any other product I’ve used before. You can pick one up at Amazon

You can’t help but be attracted to this magnetic Lightning cable

The MagCable works with an adapter tip and magnetic cable.

From the 1st century to today, you could say the magnet is one component of technology that has stuck around.

With that bad pun out of the way (two if you count the headline), a Hong Kong company is using the simple magnet to make the charging of our smartphones easier and faster. The MagCable is a USB cable with a magnetic end that snaps into place thanks to an adapter tip that plugs into your charging port.

There is even a Lightning magnet adapter for iPhone and charging can be sped up by a button on the cable that shuts off data sync.

The makers of the cable, aMagic, are trying to raise more than $76,000 on Kickstarter to begin production. For $12, a backer can get a MagCable and the adapter tip to match their smartphone.

The MagCable could be useful in a car, where the driver can just snake the cable end near the port and feel for the snap in order to avoid the distraction of a more involved plug-in.

The MagCable comes with adapter tips for both Android and iPhone.

The cord is one meter long, includes a light to indicate charge status and works with Android micro USB and iPhone Lightning connections. The company has even make available a Lightning Magnet Adapter for regular iPhone cables.

It also works on tablets, like the iPod, as well as Bluetooth speakers, wireless gaming controls and MP3 players.

If funding goals are met, aMagic, which makes other accessories like speakers, an action camera and power banks, can begin shipping the MagCable by November. The company is also hoping to get Apple MFi certification.