12.9-Inch 'iPad Pro' Production Rumored for Q2 2015 Amid Manufacturing Difficulties

Apple's 12.9-inch "iPad Pro" may not enter mass production until the second quarter of 2015, according to new predictions from often-reliable KGI Securities analyst Ming-Chi Kuo. He believes that the iPad Pro will use an oxide panel to achieve a "high resolution, quick response, and high color saturation," and that the time needed for component yield and assembly to improve will push back production until 2Q 2015.

Earlier this year, a report from Bloomberg suggested the iPad Pro might be released in early 2015, but an October report from The Wall Street Journal indicated Apple had delayed its planned December mass production of the tablet in order to focus its attention on producing more iPhone 6 Plus units, leaving a potential iPad Pro release date up in the air.

12_9_ipad_macbook_air

Mockup of 12.9-inch iPad Pro next to 13-inch MacBook Air

Little is known about the iPad Pro aside from its 12.2 to 12.9-inch display size, which dwarfs the smaller 9.7-inch iPad Air 2 and the 7.9-inch iPad mini 3. Rumors have also suggested that it will offer the same A8X processor introduced with the iPad Air 2 along with an ultra high resolution display and a 7mm-thick form factor that's similar to existing iPads.

Kuo's report also focuses on forecasting iPad shipments, which he believes will fall 54.5 percent quarter over quarter to just 9.8 million units during the first calendar quarter of 2015. He points towards the lack of new applications and a saturation of the tablet market as the basis for his prediction.

We believe that, in a major shift, while Apple (US) used to be able to use new form factor designs to boost demand, it has failed to do so this time around. The lighter and thinner iPad Air 2 will face strong headwinds in increasing sales in 1Q15, we believe; we also hold that this means that iPad, along with the entire tablet market, is faced with structural challenges characterized by a lack of new applications and market saturation. We don't think these challenges will be easily overcome by upgraded specs, new form factor designs or lower prices.

Kuo's estimate is rather low, considering Apple sold 16.35 million million iPads during the first calendar quarter of 2014, but iPad sales have been down for the past three quarters in a row. During the fourth fiscal quarter of 2014, Apple sold 12.3 million iPads, down from 14.1 million units in 2013.

According to Apple CEO Tim Cook, the drop in iPad sales is just a "speed bump" that the company will overcome. He told investors earlier this year that "significant innovation can be brought to the iPad," and suggested Apple was working on such improvements. The upcoming 12.9-inch iPad Pro may be Apple's first step towards bolstering its iPad lineup, and the company is also said to be working on new iPad features, like split-screen multitasking.

Related Roundup: iPad Pro

Top Rated Comments

NutsNGum Avatar
79 months ago
$1000 16gb.
$1500 64gb.
Score: 24 Votes (Like | Disagree)
dmylrea Avatar
79 months ago
That's pretty significant sales drops forecasted. I guess thinner, faster, better only works for so long until people "get it" and start keeping their tablets instead of upgrading. That, and the hidden code Apple puts in new iOS versions that slows down perfectly good older iPads to the point of being frustratingly slow, causing the owner to spend the money on a new one. :)
Score: 16 Votes (Like | Disagree)
zedsdead Avatar
79 months ago
The iPad is stagnant because it needs more innovation on the software side. The internals of the iPad Air 2 are amazing, but who is really going to take advantage of it; very few people.

The productivity side to tablets is still lackluster and is in its infancy.
Score: 13 Votes (Like | Disagree)
nepalisherpa Avatar
79 months ago
I can't wait for iPad Pro to be released....not because I want one, but, because I want these rumors to stop.
Score: 13 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Dwalls90 Avatar
79 months ago
At that point it'll probably just slip to Q3/Q4 with the rest of the iPad line up.
Score: 12 Votes (Like | Disagree)
luckydcxx Avatar
79 months ago
Is there any apple product that doesn't have manufacturing difficulties/delays?
Score: 11 Votes (Like | Disagree)

Top Stories

Apple Watc black friday 20 sale feature

Apple Black Friday 2020: Best Apple Watch Deals [Updated]

Wednesday November 25, 2020 4:01 pm PST by
Black Friday sales have begun on a variety of products, including the Apple Watch. There are quite a few deals across the Apple Watch lineup this year, including one of the lowest price we've ever seen the Apple Watch Series 3. Note: MacRumors is an affiliate partner with some of these vendors. When you click a link and make a purchase, we may receive a small payment, which helps us keep the...
AirPods Pro black friday 20 sale feature 2

Black Friday 2020: AirPods Pro Reach Lowest Price Ever [Updated]

Wednesday November 25, 2020 3:22 pm PST by
Black Friday has kicked off this week, and one of the first major sales for the AirPods Pro is available right now on Walmart. You can find this deal below, along with a few other solid discounts on the regular AirPods. Note: MacRumors is an affiliate partner with some of these vendors. When you click a link and make a purchase, we may receive a small payment, which helps us keep the site...
windows 10

Developer Successfully Virtualizes Windows for Arm on M1 Mac

Friday November 27, 2020 7:16 am PST by
Developer Alexander Graf has successfully virtualized the Arm version of Windows on an M1 Mac, proving that the M1 chip is capable of running Microsoft's operating system (via The 8-Bit). Currently, Macs with the M1 chip do not support Windows and there is no Boot Camp feature as there is on Intel Macs, but support for Windows is a feature that many users would like to see. Using the...
General black friday 20 sale feature

Thanksgiving Day Deals Still Available on AirPods, M1 Macs, Apple Watch Series 6, iPads

Thursday November 26, 2020 10:21 am PST by
Black Friday deals seem to start earlier and earlier every year, so there were already a wide variety of discounts available for Apple products on Thanksgiving Day. Many of the deals remain available even after Thanksgiving, but act fast, as inventory quickly fluctuates. Thanksgiving Day Deals on Apple Products — Still Available:AirPods with a wireless charging case remain available for...
iPhone black friday 20 sale feature

Apple Black Friday 2020: Best iPhone Deals

Friday November 27, 2020 12:56 pm PST by
Black Friday is halfway done, but there are still a few deals to shop for on iPhones at carriers like AT&T, Verizon, and T-Mobile/Sprint. Note: MacRumors is an affiliate partner with some of these vendors. When you click a link and make a purchase, we may receive a small payment, which helps us keep the site running. AT&T Starting with AT&T, you'll find up to $700 off any iPhone 12 when...
13 16 inch macbook pro air trio

Reliable Leaker Suggests Redesigned MacBooks in 2021 Will Include Both Apple Silicon and Intel Models

Wednesday November 25, 2020 9:15 am PST by
Reliable leaker known as "L0vetodream" has today suggested on Twitter that redesigned MacBooks coming in the second half of 2021 will include models with both Apple Silicon chips and Intel processors. The brief Tweet came in response to a MacRumors article from earlier today, which outlined a report from Ming-Chi Kuo claiming that Apple plans to release redesigned MacBook models with Apple ...
iphone trade in store

UK Environmental Committee Says Apple Contributing to 'Throwaway Culture' of 'Short-Lived Products'

Thursday November 26, 2020 7:07 am PST by
Technology companies like Apple are contributing to e-waste by making their products difficult to repair, and charging expensive repair fees, according to a lengthy report published today by the UK Parliament's Environmental Audit Committee. "We were told that Apple glues and solders parts together on their laptops, which makes repairing them very difficult," the Committee wrote in a summary ...
m1 chip macbook air pro

Kuo: Redesigned MacBooks With Apple Silicon to Launch in Second Half of 2021

Tuesday November 24, 2020 7:53 pm PST by
Apple plans to release additional MacBook models with Apple Silicon in the second half of 2021, according to analyst Ming-Chi Kuo, as part of the company's two-year transition away from Intel processors across its Mac lineup. In a research note today, obtained by MacRumors, Kuo said that these MacBook models will feature a new design. Kuo did not specify which models these will be, but he...
mac mini macbook pro macbook air

Apple M1 Hands-On Comparison: MacBook Air vs. MacBook Pro vs. Mac Mini

Monday November 23, 2020 3:40 pm PST by
Apple's M1 Macs are out in the wild now, but ahead of the holidays, you might still be trying to figure out which one to pick up, either for yourself or as a gift for someone else. We've got all three of the new Macs available, so we thought we'd give MacRumors readers a hands-on overview of each machine in our latest YouTube video. Subscribe to the MacRumors YouTube channel for more videos. ...
iPad Pro 5G and Mini LED feature

Rumored 2021 High-End iPad Pro May Feature 5G With mmWave Support

Thursday November 26, 2020 2:14 am PST by
Apple's rumored high-end iPad Pro models to be released next year will be 5G-enabled with mmWave support, according to sources cited by industry publication DigiTimes. Multiple rumors have suggested Apple is planning to release a high-end 12.9-inch iPad Pro with a mini-LED display next year, with the possibility that there will be an 11-inch mini-LED model too, but details beyond that have...