The iPad Pro is for business

The rap on Apple for years was that it made gear just for hipsters and schools. But that’s no longer the case. yourbizhere copyIt’s kicking ass in business now too, and in a way that may end up being more dominant than IBM and Microsoft ever were.

A refresher…

From the mid-’80s to the mid-’00s, Microsoft and Windows ruled the business world. To a huge extent they still do. A Windows box is to a corporate desktop today what an IBM 3270 Display terminal was to the same in the Mainframe Age. And countless ATMs, airport displays and PoS (Point-of-Sale) systems run on Windows.

But executives like their Macs and their iOS mobiles, and both kinds of devices are now becoming common, if not quite ubiquitous, on corporate desktops, in the hands of waiters in restaurants and workers in the field — and even at PoS locations.

And Apple has the huge advantage of total vertical integration: they make and run the hardware, the software, the app platform and the company store. Not saying that’s a good thing, but it is a major thing.

The iPad Pro has the look and feel of a design machine: it’s easy to work on, especially with its Pencil, and has a beautiful screen and UI. But it’s also good just for display. And will be handy in the field both for doing business work and for showing that work off.

Any company dealing in stuff that needs to look good to B2B clients or B2C customers will find the iPad Pro is an invention that mothers necessity: now ya gotta have one. Or a few.

I mean, they’re so much better than whipping out a laptop. There’s something about opening one’s laptop for others that feels like you’re letting them into your bedroom, with all this personal stuff laying around. It’s not pretty. Or easy. Or simple. On a slab like the iPad, drilling down to the pix you want is almost artful.

Anyway, watch the space. It’s a lot bigger than it used to be.

And think twice before buying the current inaugural model. Always best to wait for the next version, which will have lots of V1bugs and design errors worked out.




  1. Rolf’s avatar

    You can write the exact same post with replacing iPad Pro with Microsoft Surface Pro 4, minus the last sentence. It’s now a great device and win10 is way better in combining the tablet with the laptop world.
    Give it a try.
    Disclaimer: I am an ex MSFT employee.

  2. Doc Searls’s avatar

    Thanks, Rolf.

    I like the Surface series, but I’m sad to see the Windows hardware OEM business fall away, because there are fewer shells for Linux hermit crabs to occupy. (Disclaimer: I write for Linux Journal.)

    That said, this post just explains my bet on a different future of a new piece of hardware than other writers are seeing. I didn’t write it because I favor it in any way — or over other hardware. While I happen to have two iPads (a nearly dead original one and an iPad Air), I bought neither, and have no plans to buy one. (Though I do find them handy for some things, such as watching movies on planes and reading books on subways.)

    And I do wish Microsoft well. It must be hard for them to be an also-ran in categories the once dominated. (Though thankfully for them, they still do dominate some.)

  3. rolf’s avatar

    Its interesting to see both the Surface and iPad Pro category betting heavily on the use of the digital pen. I like it a lot for sketching / creating mockups.

    Regarding Linux: i use Linux Mint on my Lenovo Thinkpad and i am suprised how well i can handle most of my day to day tasks without any expert knowledge. And i have zero driver problems etc. But on Surface of course i am unable to utilize any of the built in device features specifically designed for Windows. But i am sure some OSS project will follow and Linux will support that too.

  4. Doc Searls’s avatar

    Thanks again, Rolf. Maybe a reader here would like to take on the project of writing a guest piece for Linux Journal explaining how to make the most out of Linux on a Surface. 🙂 I’m serious. (It won’t me me. I’m the least technical editor at the magazine.)

  5. Jonathan Peterson’s avatar

    Was chatting with a friend who was on a recent business trip in Japan and saw large numbers of his colleagues using new japanese digital paper tablets:

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