Apple's response to flat-lining iPad sales will be to make it a better, more productive work tool.
It's well known that tablet sales aren't what they used to be, and that even Apple's imperious iPad range hasn't been immune to consumer indifference. Sales of the leading tablet brand have fallen for the last six successive quarters.
According to a new Wall Street Journal report, Apple is pursuing a subtle repositioning of its beloved tablet range as a business aid. To that end, the company is apparently working directly with some 40 business app makers to make the iPad a more appealing and useful work tool.
The initiative, which is being called the "mobility partner program" or MPP, will see Apple competing in a workplace tech market that's worth around £1.3 trillion per year. Such workplace tech still isn't particularly mobile-focused, which is where Apple believes that it can carve out a niche.
In order to compete in this new market (Apple traditionally shoots for the consumer market with all of its products), it has apparently invited outside officials from the business app world to train Apple business specialists.
Apple, for its part, is helping those companies to hone their iOS apps the Apple way. The company is also encouraging such app creators to collaborate with one another in order to make their apps work better together.
The initiative even runs down to Apple-using small business owners, who are apparently being invited to Apple-run workshops where various iPad-friendly business apps are pitched.
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Apple's ultimate goal, it seems, is to offer app bundles that are tailored for specific businesses. It could even get mobile network operators involved to help sell such bundles.
With a business-oriented, super-sized iPad Pro long rumoured to be in the pipeline, it seems clear that the future of Apple's tablet range is the workplace.
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