KGI: Apple likely to launch simple stylus to enhance upcoming 12.9-inch iPad user experience; advanc

Posted:
in iPad edited January 2015
Apple is likely to launch a hardware stylus to enhance the user experience for its long-rumored 12.9-inch "iPad Pro," according one well-placed industry analyst with a strong track record in predicting the company's future product plans.

Pencil
Development studio FiftyThree's iPad stylus is one of dozens already on the market.


In a report obtained on Sunday by AppleInsider, well-regarded analyst Ming-Chi Kuo of KGI Securities said numerous stylus-related patents filed by the Cupertino-based company (1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, etc.) and his own research lead him to believe the iPad maker will launch a stylus in the second quarter of this year to compliment the 12.9-inch so-called "iPad Pro."

"Given that it's more precise than a person's fingers, a stylus can be more convenient to use than the combination of keyboard and mouse in some cases," Kuo wrote. "Therefore, we believe Apple's stylus will improve the user experience of 12.9-inch iPad."

Kuo, who has a fairly reliable track record in predicting Apple's future product directions, did not cite any particular source for the rumor outside of Apple's own patent filings. This marks an unusual turn for the analyst known to have close ties to Apple's supply chain partners.

Stylus
One of Apple's latest filings detailed an iPad stylus with extendable 'multitouch' nib, onboard light and motion sensors.


Kuo believes that most users likely won't need a stylus initially, prompting Apple to launch the device as an optional add-on, rather than including it alongside the jumbo iPad.

"Coupled with its unfavorable cost structure, high selling prices may turn consumers off if the 12.9-inch iPad is always bundled with it," he wrote. "We therefore expect the stylus to be an optional accessory before sufficient user feedback is received."

Kuo does not expect the stylus to feature many bells and whistles, such as a built-in gyroscope or accelerometer, in its first year. He believes Apple will gradually add new features, and expects 3D handwriting to be enabled in future models.

"The addition of a gyroscope accelerometer to a stylus allows users to write not only on the display, but also on other hard surfaces and even in the air," he wrote. "While this is a fantastic application for a stylus, we think the required software and hardware is not fully developed yet. Hence, we don't expect Apple's stylus to support 3D handwriting in 2015."

Patent 1
A filing from 2012 expressed Apple's interest in an iOS stylus with an optical sensor & haptic feedback.


Similarly, Kuo said that while wireless charging would be convenient, he see little likelihood of it being implemented for the forthcoming stylus given the higher cost and difficult antenna design. "We expect charging to be via a Lightning connector," he added.

In all, Kuo believes the advent of an Apple-sanctioned stylus itself will facilitate only a limited boost to iPad shipments in the near term. However, the device could give birth to a new breed of applications, which may help offset any negative impact that may weigh on the tablet market from ongoing structural changes.

"We don't foresee significant sales of an optional stylus in 2015 and forecast unit shipments of 2-2.5 million," he wrote. "But we believe that the stylus could improve the experience of users, however, and will likely help Apple develop specific customer groups such as the corporate sector and educational institutions."

Aside from the size of the display, there have been relatively few leaks regarding the internal makeup of Apple's anticipated new tablet. One report from last Fall suggested that the device may ship with the then-unrevealed "A8X" chip, while a later missive indicated the addition of two new speakers and an additional microphone that "might" make the iPad Pro "capable of supporting stereo audio."

Even the screen size is somewhat in doubt, with Apple also believed to be evaluating a 12.2-inch alternative. Kuo himself has previously predicted that the iPad Pro would also bring along with it a new flavor of iOS designed to take advantage of the larger display, which could include functionality such as split-screen multitasking.
«13456715

Comments

  • Reply 1 of 282
    blastdoorblastdoor Posts: 2,435member

    Stylus, eh?

     

    Well... I guess people will probably quote Jobs' opinion about the merits of a stylus (he was against it).

     

    But a few thoughts:

     

    1. adding a stylus at this stage of the game as an optional accessory is quite a different thing from having the UI built around the assumption that a stylus is necessary from day one

     

    2. I can imagine that enterprise/pro customers want something more than fingers as the basis for interaction with an iPad. A stylus might be a more attractive option (in terms of mobility) than going the keyboard route. 

     

    3. Jobs changed his mind all the time. People shouldn't assume he would be against something now just because he was against it in 2010. 

  • Reply 2 of 282
    gatorguygatorguy Posts: 23,171member
    blastdoor wrote: »
    Stylus, eh?

    3. Jobs changed his mind all the time. People shouldn't assume he would be against something now just because he was against it in 2010. 
    They shouldn't even assume he was against something just because he said he was.
  • Reply 3 of 282

    Yet more evidence of Mr Cook as the new Michael Spindler - too bad most people can't see the long-term obviousness of that:

     

    - "Follow the analyst", me-too failed products: iPad mini and iPhone 5C, already to be discontinued;

     

    - Another failure in the making: Apple Watch:

     

    - Increasingly bloated product line (remember the Performa/LC/Quadra mess?);

     

    - and now this stylus BS: why simplify if you can complicate it? 

     

    Go back to being a COO, Cook - and nothing else.

  • Reply 4 of 282
    palegolaspalegolas Posts: 1,328member
    If they wanna stay on top of the game, the only thing they need to nail is Dead on precision. None of the other iPad styli out there offer this. But perhaps it's just for newer devices with a new screen pen input sensor or something.
  • Reply 5 of 282
    gatorguy wrote: »
    They shouldn't even assume he was against something just because he said he was.

    Quite true. :D
    brlawyer wrote: »
    Yet more evidence of Mr Cook as the new Michael Spindler - too bad most people can't see the long-term obviousness of that:

    - "Follow the analyst", me-too failed products: iPad mini and iPhone 5C, already to be discontinued;

    - Another failure in the making: Apple Watch:

    - Increasingly bloated product line (remember the Performa/LC/Quadra mess?);

    - and now this stylus BS: why simplify if you can complicate it? 

    Go back to being a COO, Cook - and nothing else.

    Spindler was also responsible for a little product called the PowerBook...yeah, I guess that was a flop too. 8-)

    And Jobs never had failures. Ever.

    Jobs never introduced products to compete in different market segments. Ever.

    Jobs never increased the size of his product line. Ever.

    Cook has never cut back on products to simplify the line. Ever.

    As for the stylus, guess what? You know what product Jobs really loved? The eMate 300...which used a stylus. And a keyboard! (With a touch screen, the horror!). As for the Newton, he actually thought there was good technology there, but that it was hampered by bad management. But because Apple didn't have the cash for hobbies, and because it was Scully's (who launched the Newton, in case you didn't know) brainchild, it was doomed.

    There is a difference between a dumb stick and an active stylus for artists. Jobs would be fine with the latter.
  • Reply 6 of 282
    jp55jp55 Posts: 15member
    brlawyer wrote: »
    Yet more evidence of Mr Cook as the new Michael Spindler - too bad most people can't see the long-term obviousness of that:

    - "Follow the analyst", me-too failed products: iPad mini and iPhone 5C, already to be discontinued;

    - Another failure in the making: Apple Watch:

    - Increasingly bloated product line (remember the Performa/LC/Quadra mess?);

    - and now this stylus BS: why simplify if you can complicate it? 

    Go back to being a COO, Cook - and nothing else.

    Apple sold more iPhones & iPads last year than the entire global PC industry sold during any year Spindler was in charge. Apple remains the most profitable non oil company on the planet. To suggest Tim Cook is "the new Spindler" is but ignorant trolling of a child.
  • Reply 7 of 282
    blastdoor wrote: »
    Stylus, eh?

    Well... I guess people will probably quote Jobs' opinion about the merits of a stylus (he was against it).

    But a few thoughts:

    1. adding a stylus at this stage of the game as an optional accessory is quite a different thing from having the UI built around the assumption that a stylus is necessary from day one

    2. I can imagine that enterprise/pro customers want something more than fingers as the basis for interaction with an iPad. A stylus might be a more attractive option (in terms of mobility) than going the keyboard route. 

    3. Jobs changed his mind all the time. People shouldn't assume he would be against something now just because he was against it in 2010. 

    1. It's already optional. My concern is that to make a stylus work 'well' it would have to be 'smart' and therefore a integral part of the ui that is tailored away from one input plane to a tool and inputs from that (simple use case: one end for creation, the other for erasure), and then you have two ui's. And if you have two ui's "you're doing it wrong " (see MS surface)

    2. I can see the need for scribbling notes and textifying during meetings(and grammar school handwriting lessons). However I see those as the edge case, and a custom app or 4 or 400.

    3. I agree to this. I think in time the brains of the iP* will be able to auto switch to detect a stylus device and switch from touch mode to tool mode. The less obvious the change from one ui to another (Siri dictation is getting there but isn't perfect) the more I see 'writing' as an input.
  • Reply 8 of 282

    'If you need a stylus, you blew it.' Steve Jobs, co-founder of Apple

     

    Tut tut, Apple.

  • Reply 9 of 282
    radarthekatradarthekat Posts: 3,395moderator
    brlawyer wrote: »
    Yet more evidence of Mr Cook as the new Michael Spindler - too bad most people can't see the long-term obviousness of that:

    - "Follow the analyst", me-too failed products: iPad mini and iPhone 5C, already to be discontinued;

    - Another failure in the making: Apple Watch

    The iPad mini has been a great success. It outsold pretty much, if not every, tablet of any size from any vendor other than Apple. It will be updated in the future; the reason it was only minimally updated in the 2014 product refresh cycle is due to the lifespan of the iPad in consumer's hands. The mini was only two years old and consumers keep their iPads for three to four years before updating. Apple will save the major Internals and anti-glare-display refresh for next year, when those who purchased the original non-retina mini will be looking to upgrade.

    The 5C outsold even Samsung's larger-display flagship phones in many markets. And that was merely a lower bill-of-materials version of the already year old 5 when it was introduced. And it drove uptake of the more expensive 5S to higher percentages than any previous new-model iPhone. How anyone can see that as a failure is beyond me.

    As to the Apple Watch, you will be eating your words soon enough.
  • Reply 10 of 282
    jp55 wrote: »
    Apple sold more iPhones & iPads last year than the entire global PC industry sold during any year Spindler was in charge. Apple remains the most profitable non oil company on the planet. To suggest Tim Cook is "the new Spindler" is but ignorant trolling of a child.

    ++1

    Piling on. The 5c and mini can be seen as aggressive counters to the competition "getting under the [pricing] umbrella". Tactical (in the short term market share) but strategic in the opening of new markets and marketing methods.

    And the years of changing forms and factors of the iPod line is evidence that Apple will explore options to expand/hold market share.
  • Reply 11 of 282
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by brlawyer View Post

     

    Yet more evidence of Mr Cook as the new Michael Spindler - too bad most people can't see the long-term obviousness of that:

     

    - "Follow the analyst", me-too failed products: iPad mini and iPhone 5C, already to be discontinued;

     

    - Another failure in the making: Apple Watch:

     

    - Increasingly bloated product line (remember the Performa/LC/Quadra mess?);

     

    - and now this stylus BS: why simplify if you can complicate it? 

     

    Go back to being a COO, Cook - and nothing else.


     

    Well, yeah, the iPad mini is overdue for retirement, given that the iPad mini 2 and 3 are both available. It makes sense for Apple to focus their product line a bit, retire the original mini, and drop prices on the 2 and 3, which would be in line with their earlier product line actions. I'm not seeing a "failed" product there, just expected progression.

     

    The iPhone 5C is also due for replacement in mid to late 2015, since it will be 2 years old by that point, so the rumors of its retirement make sense. Presumably it will be replaced by a new model with similar internals to the iPhone 6 but the standard form factor of the iPhone 5c and 5s, and probably an aggressive price. Again, hardly "failed" in any sense.

     

    The Apple Watch is a "failure in the making"?  Got any sales numbers to back that up? No? Oh, of course you don't, because it isn't even available yet and you are making stuff up.

     

    As for the stylus, it's a rumor. People have been predicting Apple styli since the iPad was first announced. Yawn. Ooooh, this rumor is from a fairly reputable source? Yawn.

     

    Overall, your post sounds pretty trollish to me. Perhaps that's why Tim Cook is running the most successful company on the planet, and you're some random voice ranting on internet boards.

  • Reply 12 of 282
    A huge need for Enterprise is a stylus. It's essential for filling out daily forms such as inventory. Apple is also "heavy" on education needs. Students need a stylus that let's them take notes in class. Most educational institutions don't allow typing during class!! This product is long overdue. There are many 3rd party vendors but most Apple use styluses are designed for art work. Mimicking a pencil is truly a Mistake apple has taken too long to embrace. Oddly one of the few that advertise a pen that can write is Anobit which is owned by Apple yet the stylus is sold as an Anobit product???
  • Reply 13 of 282
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by brlawyer View Post

     

    Yet more evidence of Mr Cook as the new Michael Spindler - too bad most people can't see the long-term obviousness of that:

     

    - "Follow the analyst", me-too failed products: iPad mini and iPhone 5C, already to be discontinued;

     

    - Another failure in the making: Apple Watch:

     

    - Increasingly bloated product line (remember the Performa/LC/Quadra mess?);

     

    - and now this stylus BS: why simplify if you can complicate it? 

     

    Go back to being a COO, Cook - and nothing else.


     

     

    I'm inclined to agree, particularly regards the Apple Watch. Its time has not yet come, and should be gently purged.

     

    To add to your list: removing the best sized and best-selling iPhone from sale-the 4".

     

    Also losing focus by not keeping the software tight, but giving in to feature-sprawl.

  • Reply 14 of 282
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by TheWhiteFalcon View Post

     
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Gatorguy View Post



    They shouldn't even assume he was against something just because he said he was.




    Quite true. image
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by brlawyer View Post



    Yet more evidence of Mr Cook as the new Michael Spindler - too bad most people can't see the long-term obviousness of that:



    - "Follow the analyst", me-too failed products: iPad mini and iPhone 5C, already to be discontinued;



    - Another failure in the making: Apple Watch:



    - Increasingly bloated product line (remember the Performa/LC/Quadra mess?);



    - and now this stylus BS: why simplify if you can complicate it? 



    Go back to being a COO, Cook - and nothing else.




    Spindler was also responsible for a little product called the PowerBook...yeah, I guess that was a flop too. image



    And Jobs never had failures. Ever.



    Jobs never introduced products to compete in different market segments. Ever.



    Jobs never increased the size of his product line. Ever.



    Cook has never cut back on products to simplify the line. Ever.



    As for the stylus, guess what? You know what product Jobs really loved? The eMate 300...which used a stylus. And a keyboard! (With a touch screen, the horror!). As for the Newton, he actually thought there was good technology there, but that it was hampered by bad management. But because Apple didn't have the cash for hobbies, and because it was Scully's (who launched the Newton, in case you didn't know) brainchild, it was doomed.



    There is a difference between a dumb stick and an active stylus for artists. Jobs would be fine with the latter.



    No, Jobs hated stylii; have to put you right, there.

     

    I think you're elevating Jobs's aptitude to a level that even he didn't attain.

     

    He did have failures, probably more than we can imagine, as most of them will have been unseen by the public.

     

    There are different Macs to cater to different market segments, so you're wrong there, too.

     

    Never increased his product line?! The iPods grew and grew by the year.

     

    You may be right about Cook not cutting back on products. There's too much splurge with the iPad line, that's for sure.

  • Reply 15 of 282
    enzosenzos Posts: 344member
    Guesswork! Reasonable guesses though. A pro tablet with a precise input device(s) sounds like a winner: this one is for work more than for play.
  • Reply 16 of 282
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Benjamin Frost View Post

     



    No, Jobs hated stylii; have to put you right, there.

     

    I think you're elevating Jobs's aptitude to a level that even he didn't attain.

     

    He did have failures, probably more than we can imagine, as most of them will have been unseen by the public.

     

    There are different Macs to cater to different market segments, so you're wrong there, too.

     

    Never increased his product line?! The iPods grew and grew by the year.

     

    You may be right about Cook not cutting back on products. There's too much splurge with the iPad line, that's for sure.


  • Reply 17 of 282

    It should also be noted that Apple still has the best handwriting recognition system ever devised. To my knowledge, no one has ever beaten the system included in Newton OS 2.1.

  • Reply 18 of 282
    dcgoodcgoo Posts: 247member
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by TheOtherGeoff View Post





    1. It's already optional. My concern is that to make a stylus work 'well' it would have to be 'smart' and therefore a integral part of the ui that is tailored away from one input plane to a tool and inputs from that (simple use case: one end for creation, the other for erasure), and then you have two ui's. And if you have two ui's "you're doing it wrong " (see MS surface)



    2. I can see the need for scribbling notes and textifying during meetings(and grammar school handwriting lessons). However I see those as the edge case, and a custom app or 4 or 400.



    3. I agree to this. I think in time the brains of the iP* will be able to auto switch to detect a stylus device and switch from touch mode to tool mode. The less obvious the change from one ui to another (Siri dictation is getting there but isn't perfect) the more I see 'writing' as an input.

     



    We are all assuming it will just be a bigger iPad.  What if it is an entirely new product with a completely different interface and OS?  ...just sayin'  ...it might be more different than we think.

  • Reply 19 of 282
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by TheWhiteFalcon View Post

     
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Benjamin Frost View Post

     



    No, Jobs hated stylii; have to put you right, there.

     

    I think you're elevating Jobs's aptitude to a level that even he didn't attain.

     

    He did have failures, probably more than we can imagine, as most of them will have been unseen by the public.

     

    There are different Macs to cater to different market segments, so you're wrong there, too.

     

    Never increased his product line?! The iPods grew and grew by the year.

     

    You may be right about Cook not cutting back on products. There's too much splurge with the iPad line, that's for sure.



     

     

    Snowing where you are? How nice.

     

    Grey and cold here in London; par for the course.

  • Reply 20 of 282
    davidwdavidw Posts: 1,329member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Benjamin Frost View Post

     

    'If you need a stylus, you blew it.' Steve Jobs, co-founder of Apple

     

    Tut tut, Apple.


     

    I believe Jobs was referring to a device that requires a stylus in order to use it. After all, third parties has always made a stylus for the iPad and iPhones. (Along with special software that can better utilize that stylus.) But a stylus is not required in order to use an iPad or iPhone.

     

    Plus the stylus Jobs was refering to was the ones that were nothing but a sharp stick, because the device itself wasn't sensitive enough to accurately detect touch with something as common as finger. 

Sign In or Register to comment.