When Steve Jobs, the co-founder of Apple Inc. spoke about the company’s development strategy way back in 1993, the vision was very simple. Apple’s aim was to ‘put an incredibly great computer in a book that you can learn how to use in 20 minutes and carry around with you without having to hook up to anything and yet be in communication with other computer users’.

This is very much in keeping with the rumors that the iPad design was on the drawing board much ahead of the iPhone that saw its first release in 2007, fact that was later confirmed by Jobs himself.

The iPad is a line of tablet computers running on an iOS designed and marketed by Apple. The first version of the iPad was released with much fanfare and expectation in April 2010 followed by updated versions almost every year. It was the first successful tablet computer that the world had ever laid eyes on! Within the short span of six years, the market has been flooded with tablet computers from major tech companies all having their fair share of public interest. Select models of the iPad include cellular connectivity and built in Wi-Fi; the user interface of the iPhone is built around a multi-touch screen that includes a virtual keyboard. World over more than 300 million iPads have been sold and it is second in sales revenues to the Android based tablets since 2014.

Just as email revolutionized communication between people, the iPad has made people rethink the way they work. The ease-of-use and ‘on-the-move’ features of latest models have enabled professionals to plan, schedule, manage, draw, sketch, design, paint and model their work depending on the requirement and time frame. For example, an architect showing initial sketches or plans of a construction design no longer needs to carry around cumbersome rolls of drawings and blue prints when all he needs to do is put the whole thing down on the iPad and show it off to a client. That’s not all. Discussions, changes, additions and deletions can all be recorded and carried out instantly without the need of confinement to a location.

In short, the iPad has become a workplace central to both professionals and clients.

A quick look at the advantages of an iPad over a laptop brings these to mind.

• The brand value and name of Apple

• Portability

• Less expensive

• Light-weight

• Low electricity consumption

The iPad Pro released in 2016 and was immediately liked and critiqued equally by customers. Ironically, the launch of the 12.9 inch tablet was quickly followed by the announcement of a 9.7 inch iPad Pro launch to the dismay of many who had acquired the 12.9 inch version. But a smaller screen-size does not always upstage the larger version which has many pluses to its credit, chief among them being the 4GB RAM as compared to the 2GB that the smaller version provides. The other important factor in favor of the 12.9 is the faster transfer speed.

Apple has been facing stiff competition from other tablet makers like Acer, HP, Lenovo and Samsung and the Windows 10 operating system has been gaining ground over Apple’s own iOS as well as the Android, so it’s advisable to really have all the facts in hand before getting down to buying a tablet.

Interestingly, Apple’s General Counsel Bruce Sewell suffered a malfunction of his iPad Pro while testifying at the US House Judiciary Committee hearing on the balance between ‘privacy and security’ in the legal case that Apple is fighting against the FBI which has asked Apple to unlock the phone of a shooter who killed 14 people in California last year. Though not a major fault and seemingly related to the auto-lock timer on the device, it nevertheless outlined the fault at a very important time.