A new and upcoming iPad Pro could come with a USB-C port instead of Apple’s proprietary Lightning port, according to Apple analyst Ming Chi Kuo, who has a great track record with Apple device predictions.
We first saw the report on 9to5Mac.
Apart from adopting a more universal standard, it’s not clear exactly why Apple could be giving USB-C ports to its iPad over the traditional Lightning port.
One clear benefit from the change would be the ability to charge the iPad Pro with a USB-C cable, which is becoming more and more ubiquitous with device charging. Namely, Apple’s own MacBook and MacBook Pro laptops use USB-C for charging.
In relation to charging, Kuo predicts that Apple will include an 18-watt charging brick and USB-C cable to charge the upcoming iPad Pro.
An iPad Pro with USB-C could also be a massive step towards iPads that could realistically replace your computer, as per Apple’s marketing that claims iPads can replace traditional computers like laptops.
For one, giving USB-C to iPad Pros means users could potentially plug in a much wider variety of devices and accessories than they could with Apple’s standard Lightning port.
For example, you might have the option to plug in an external hard drive, which could be enormously useful to professionals with massive photo or video files to edit on apps like Photoshop or iMovie. A music professional could plug in music hardware that they’re used to plugging into computers, like MIDI devices, thanks to USB-C.
Essentially, USB-C could give the iPad Pro a lot more use as a primary standalone device rather than just a tablet that accompanies a computer.
Kuo also predicts that the new iPad Pro will come with the iPhone X’s Face ID facial recognition system for unlocking the device and making mobile payments.
That said, these are all rumors, and my examples are purely speculative. We still don’t know what Apple’s plans are for USB-C on an iPad Pro, assuming that’s happening. Kuo has proven to be a reliable source of predictions, but it’s still not a guarantee. Whether Apple will announce new iPad Pros during its September 12 event is also uncertain, and possibly unlikely. The company is said to be announcing three new iPhones during its September event, so we might see the iPads coming later during an event in October.
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