At its hardware event in New York on Tuesday, Google launched its 2018 flagship Pixel 3 and Pixel 3 XL smartphones. However, the smartphone was overshadowed by a ChromeOS-powered detachable tablet named Pixel Slate. The Pixel Slate comes exactly a year after the launch of powerful and premium Pixelbook, which Google revealed as a clamshell ChromeOS laptop.
With the Pixel Slate, Google is challenging the iPad Pro from Apple and the Surface Pro lineup from Microsoft. It is no surprise that the Pixel Slate comes just a week after the launch of Surface Pro 6. The Surface Pro 6 retains the design of its predecessor, but improves performance with faster processor and improved thermal management. Now, Apple might be preparing to reveal its own answer to the Surface Pro 6 and Pixel Slate.
An Apple hardware is expected to take place sometime this month where the iPhone maker could introduce new iPad Pro models with Face ID, and a cheaper MacBook model with Retina Display. 9to5Mac found references to upcoming iPad Pro models in the recently released iOS 12.1 beta. The source code reveals that Apple will introduce two models this year, which could be a Wi-Fi only and LTE version.
One of the big changes this year will be the lack of a home button, which will make way for Face ID. A new report from former KGI Securities Analyst Ming-Chi Kuo, the new iPad Pro’s Face ID will work in both landscape as well as portrait mode, which many believed won’t be the case.
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There are also reports of the new iPad Pro ditching the lightning port in favor of USB Type-C port. The switch to USB-C will allow for iPad Pro to output 4K HDR video to a secondary display. Apple has been building the narrative that iPad Pro is a laptop replacement and this year, it could show features that justify that message.
Apple might also introduce new Smart Keyboard to go along with the iPad Pro equipped with Face ID. They will continue to attach via the magnetic connector, and if the October event happens in the coming weeks then we are looking a completely refreshed iPad Pro lineup.