Apple has destroyed the potential of the Smart Connector on the new iPad Pro

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Comments

  • Reply 41 of 88
    thttht Posts: 2,971member
    Heh, you remember this:


    A Smart Connector made it to the EVT, maybe DVT, phase for the iPhone 7 Plus model in early 2016. You wonder what use case Apple had for that! Really, what possible use case could it have been? Battery case?

    The current Smart Connector is just too limited to be much use for anything other low data rate devices like a keyboard. It’s power delivery into an iPad was what, 2 Watts, 1 Watt, something just more than a trickle charge? Overall, it looks like Apple is using it just for their keyboard accessory with no other intention of doing anything else with, and you already know that I think external keyboards are a dumb idea for an iPad. Users can buy an external keyboard if wanted, but Apple should be advertising the iPad as a software keyboard default device, plus stylus if you need it, and maybe a 3rd party keyboard if wanted.

    If you want a connector, why in Tartarus would you pine for a Smart Connector on the side? Go for it all and ask for TB3 port on both long and short sides of the device. This would actually enable a base with keyboard, battery, storage, more ports, and maybe even an eGPU, and if flexible enough, it can be plugged in both in landscape and portrait. A stand where you can plug an iPad in and have it and an external monitor display stuff, sounds great.

    Really, the Smart Connector as envisioned is a bad idea for consumers. In 2015, it should have been in a USBC port. In 2018, there should be 2 TB3 ports. At least this is what you should be wishing for, not a 3 pogo pin connector.
    williamlondonelijahg
  • Reply 42 of 88
    Seems like a bit of over sensationalising. The new port location isn't a show stopper and devices can still connect via Bluetooth and now USB-C.

    Sure you might not see as many specific accessories for the your iPad model, but the amount of accessories that now work with the iPad has increased *significantly*
    williamlondon
  • Reply 43 of 88
    auxio said:
    Rayz2016 said:
    If this were the only shortcoming of the new iPads there would be reason to get upset. As it stands, Apple's walled garden has shut out the iPad Pro from the pro market. iOS is seen as a toy operating system. It makes it impossible to do so many things that pros need to do like manage thousands of files or compile code or manage a network or ...

    If only there was some other profession outside network management, it might have a chance. 
    And if only the way people work could change over time.  Now if you'll excuse me, I have to get back to feeding punch cards into my mainframe...
    People WILL change - when the change helps them.   But not because Jony decided they should.
    elijahg
  • Reply 44 of 88
    sabonsabon Posts: 133member
    I spend more than seven hours a day WORKING on my iPad. Meaning I do work that people pay me for and I don’t watch cat videos on YouTube. When I take breaks I go to sties like this and read funny stories about how Apple has killed yet another product which is selling 10s of not hundreds of millions of units. 

    Yes, we are all sorry about how poorly iPhones and iPads are selling. Microsoft would LOVE to have the problem of having to figure out how to produce that many Surfaces as Apple does iPads.

    I use a 12.9” iPad Pro all day long. Both at my desk and remotely. I’m still trying to decide if I want to buy the new one or not. In the meantime the Apple Smart Keyboard that I have drives me nuts when it is time to pick up my iPad and move to another location. 

    if I always stayed in one place I would get another iMac. As it is I have a mostly maxed out two year old iMac as it is. But it doesn’t travel well. And I have problems with my shoulders so I try to keep weight down as much as possible. Which is where my 12.9” iPad Pro comes in. The smaller ones don’t have enough screen real estate and the keyboards are not full size and I type ALL DAY LONG. 

    Yes I like the thinness of the original iPad Pro and Smart Keyboard. I don’t add the added thickness of the new one and ultimately with the new Smart Keyboard the new 12.9” iPad Pro ends up weighing the same amount.

    I used to use Apple bluetooth keyboard with my iPad. But it is bulky, heavier, and just impossible to work with when all you have is your lap. 

    Apple has not killed anything. Have they made it any better? That remains to be seen. So far my currently 12.9” iPad Pro is doing everything that I need/want it to as far as what I need it to do. I’ll always want it to do more no matter how much more it can do things.

    I started out programming on a main frame. Now I use VPN to remote into my iMac from anywhere in the world and through encryption I’m not worried about anything getting stolen and I don’t have to carry around the weight of a laptop that doesn’t have the horsepower I need in the first place. And for technical/meeting papers that I have to write up, my iPad has everything that I need for that with.

    Chicken Little. The sky is not falling.
    GeorgeBMacmacpluspluschiacornchipfirelockwilliamlondonanome
  • Reply 45 of 88
    MplsP said:


    I gotta admit, I've never seen the purpose of the smart connector anyway -- or anywhere...

    The Bluetooth Logitech keyboard Apple sells for the 6th Gen iPad works fine.   Its thick and bulky, but that's just its design, not the fault of being bluetooth.

    Yes, the smart connector can supply power.  But, to what purpose?  The Logitech BT lasts several years on a single battery as it is...

    Apple is not known for adding unnecessary ports and connectors (quite the opposite actually, they seem to be committing port & connector genocide.

    So, what am I missing?  Aside from (unnecessary) power, what does the smart connector add?
    The beauty of the smart connector for a keyboard is you never have to worry about charging the keyboard, and never have to worry about connectivity issues. You also don’t have the environmental cost of another Li battery. My wife has a Bluetooth keyboard for her iPad Air 2. It works fine and doesn’t need to be charged that often, but she does have occasional issues with the Bluetooth connection and it invariably needs to be charged at an inopportune time.

    As a keyboard connector, I agree with ANdrew that the old location made a whole lot more sense. 
    Charging?   My understanding is that the Logitech BT keyboard Apple sells for the 6th Gen iPad runs for years on a single battery.   We've only had one since it was released in March, so we haven't been able to verify that.

    Connectivity?   Bluetooth works just fine.   On the rare occasion it drops, just reconnect.

    Li Battery?   The world is covered with them already.  Nobody else worries about that.

    So, I'm still back to my question:   "What does this smart connector contribute?  Does it do anything that a simple Bluetooth keyboard can't?" 
    edited November 27 elijahg
  • Reply 46 of 88
    “The biggest criticism of the case was the requirement of having a full back cover that added unnecessary bulk and weight on an otherwise slim device. I'd have preferred a two-piece design that allows for a removable keyboard with an optional back cover.” It’s pretty clear why they did this. The new Keyboard Folio is actually STABLE because off this design change. The original would flop around, fall off, and was difficult to unfold quickly. Also, moving the smart connector to the back allows for two viewing angles. Apple would have needed to add two sets of smart connection points in each slot on the keyboard, which would lead to more points of failure. Anyone with the original Smart Keyboard knows there would be times where the connection wasn’t completed and you’d type on the keyboard with nothing happening on the iPad. I think its because there was always exposed connection points that received more wear and tear. As a regular user of the original iPad Pro and now the new gen, I love the new folio design. It all feels more reliable and more of a cohesive package now.
    edited November 27 thtchiamacplusplusfirelockGeorgeBMac
  • Reply 47 of 88
    anome said:
    If this were the only shortcoming of the new iPads there would be reason to get upset. As it stands, Apple's walled garden has shut out the iPad Pro from the pro market. iOS is seen as a toy operating system. It makes it impossible to do so many things that pros need to do like manage thousands of files or compile code or manage a network or ...

    Isn't there a MacBook Pro thread to beat this horse on? ....

    Which horse are you talking bout?  .. Oh yes, the one that has only 15% market share in education since grades 4 and above need Chromebooks or PC's for mouse based productivity work?  Perhaps addressing the 85% of the education and productivity market that the iPad is currently missing out on with it's current feature set is not significant about to those that are "tired of beating an old horse"?  

    You guys that are tired of this argument are probably the same zealots that thought that large iPhones would never sell.  IMO, adding mouse support by itself should re-ignite iPad sales rather nicely.  Apple might even retake education and get a good chunk of overseas PC markets.
    GeorgeBMac
  • Reply 48 of 88
    dewmedewme Posts: 1,794member
    If this were the only shortcoming of the new iPads there would be reason to get upset. As it stands, Apple's walled garden has shut out the iPad Pro from the pro market. iOS is seen as a toy operating system. It makes it impossible to do so many things that pros need to do like manage thousands of files or compile code or manage a network or ...
    So, please explain how the iPad Pro makes it impossible for self-appointed definers of what makes a product “Pro” purchase a MacBook Pro? Last time I looked the MacBook Pro still has the ability to manage thousands of files, compile code, manage networks, edit massive videos, attach multiple external monitors, add storage devices, support external GPUs, etc.

    The constant complaints that all boil down to pointing out that an iPad Pro is not a MacBook Pro are beyond tired. It’s like complaining that a Corvette isn’t a “pro” vehicle because it doesn’t have three quarter ton cargo carrying capacity, four wheel drive, and a 500 lb ft turbo diesel engine. There’s a reason why Chevrolet makes both Corvettes and Silverado Pickups. They are two different products that appeal to both different uses, hauling dirt vs hauling ass, while also having a lot of overlapping uses, like picking up groceries or driving to work. The iPad and MacBook are no different, two different products with both widely different uses and overlapping uses. Unless Apple discontinues one or the other, customers have complete freedom to choose the product that best fits their needs. If you want a Corvette with a truck bed, buy a Surface tablet.
    edited November 27 firelock
  • Reply 49 of 88
    "If you wanted to remove the keyboard but keep the back, sorry, that's too bad." - why would you want to do this? Keeping a cover on the *backside only* has got to be a fringe case.
    Huh? Not at all. Most people keep their phone in a case, which covers only the back. Why would I not want the same thing for my iPad?

    That's exactly what we have for my wife's original 12.9" iPad Pro. It has a silicone case of the same style/type as a phone case. We can attach the keyboard when we want it and detach it when we don't, but either way it's still in its case.
    williamlondon
  • Reply 50 of 88

    Another connection Apple won’t get behind. What do they need it for anyway when there’s Bluetooth and the W2 chip?
    Power for the keyboard and automatic pairing are two things that come to mind right off the top of my head. Whether either of those justify the existence of a unique connector...

    Apple made lots of noise about the Smart Connector when they first introduced it. Then nothing happened. Now it seems like they're trying to make sure nothing CAN happen. I don't know if it matters, but it's an odd sequence -- like Apple changed its mind.
    edited November 27
  • Reply 51 of 88
    Ken TKen T Posts: 1unconfirmed, member
    Well as it stands now I have no plans of updating from my 2017 iPad Pros to these 2018 models. The only thing I can see getting is grief. I'm pretty happy with my i{ad Pros and their Logitech keyboard/stand/cases.
  • Reply 52 of 88

    The constant complaints that all boil down to pointing out that an iPad Pro is not a MacBook Pro are beyond tired. It’s like complaining that a Corvette isn’t a “pro” vehicle because it doesn’t have three quarter ton cargo carrying capacity, four wheel drive, and a 500 lb ft turbo diesel engine. There’s a reason why Chevrolet makes both Corvettes and Silverado Pickups. They are two different products that appeal to both different uses ...
    The two different uses argument was valid 8 & 1/2 years ago when the AX chip was in it's neanderthal stage.  Now it's at 7nm and more powerful than many PC notebooks.  There is no need to compromise.  If Mr. Jobs were alive, he would probably be looking at Craig Federighi and asking, "What the heck are you waiting for?"   This product needs to be taken to new markets, i.e., mouse driven markets that the higher priced MacBooks are not reaching ex. 85% education that is now lost to Chromebooks and PC's and overseas markets where MacBooks are rarely spotted.  It's now eight years and the iPad with it's current feature set has shown us that it is fully capable of losing these markets.  Time to change the playbook.  Hopefully the keyboard - tracking pad patent published at patentlyapple.com today may help the iPad reverse the last 26 consecutive quarters of sales decline. 
    GeorgeBMac
  • Reply 53 of 88
    MplsPMplsP Posts: 779member
    MplsP said:
    "If you wanted to remove the keyboard but keep the back, sorry, that's too bad." - why would you want to do this? Keeping a cover on the *backside only* has got to be a fringe case. Nobody is going to not improve something for a fringe case. And based on what I've heard on The Talk Show podcast w/ Gruber and Merlin, it's much improved. 
    I have the Logitech keyboard for my 12” iPad Pro. It allows you to snap the keyboard off, leaving the case back in place along with a kickstand, something I regularly do if I’m using it to watch video content or do other tasks where I don’t need the keyboard or the keyboard would get in the way.
    Are you trying to say with a straight face that maintaining independent kickstand support is *not* a fringe use case? And that it is indeed a “bad call” that they eliminated support for such a use case?

    Because here IRL, that’s the definition of a fringe case. 
    A completely straight face. Many people use their iPads as a straight display without a keyboard, or in a location where the keyboard would get in the way. (Andrew actually mentioned this in his review of Apple's Smart Keyboard. Regardless of the kickstand, there are times when it's handy to have just the iPad with no keyboard attached. Perhaps you can't see that, but the rest of the world can.
    GeorgeBMac
  • Reply 54 of 88
    "Hopefully the keyboard - tracking pad patent published at patentlyapple.com today may help the iPad reverse the last 26 consecutive quarters of sales decline. "

    Typo correction:  should have read "... reverse the last 16 consecutive quarters of sales decline", not 26 Q's.
  • Reply 55 of 88
    cornchipcornchip Posts: 1,131member
    melgross said:
    Feh! I never liked the old keyboard that Apple made. I want protection all around. I also never bought a Logitech because it adds too much weight. If I want a notebook, in size and weight, I would buy one.

    there is too much nonsense about this. Unlike the notebooks, there is nothing to protect it when putting it down. You need a case for that. Now, with the protrusion from the better camera, and the thinner case itself, you need a case to protect that, and have it sit flat. That’s the reason why Apple’s folio protects the back. In addition, the folio is just much better than previous one.

    i don’t know why Apple moved this, unless with the new folio it would have been triggered all of the time when closed. If anyone want to make a keyboard case using the contractors where they are, they will, if they think there’s a market for it. If they don’t think there’s a market, they won’t, no matter where the connector is.

    please, let’s ralk about something that matters, such as why they didn’t fully implement the USB C connector. Because this is trivial.
    Or why they can’t fix the gray share window bug that’s been a problem since iOS11.

    As for the bizar-o placement of the smart connector, what about a dongle?
    MplsP
  • Reply 56 of 88

    emoeller said:
    I disagree Andrew.   The placement of the connector is not particularly important - a floating connector (could be magnetically connected with the newly added magnets on the Pros) is possible, as are cases with embedded pogo-pins.   I've already contacted Totallee (I use their minimal iPhone Xs case) about this for a minimal iPad case that could still allow for the magnetic attachment of the Apple folio keyboard.

    The problem isn't with the placement, its with Apple's decision to severely restrict and limit access to the port(s) (Including Watch).  Many of my maker friends and artists gravitate to Android because they can easily access and program controllers (Rasberry Pi, Arduino, boards).   Apple has made a grave mistake in NOT allowing and supporting these creatives.
    Look up what “grave mistake” means. Losing minor sales to tinkerers ain’t it. iOS sales are legion and historic, nothing grave about them. 
    Thanks for the response.  I’ve been using Apples since 1978, and few remember that the Steves’s were into blue boxes (phone hacking).  iDevices are nothing more than tools, and without a way to allow these tools to communicate and control other iDevices, they are simply consumptive machines (an often quoted cririzism of iPads). I had hoped that the connector would provide additional connectivity beyond the lightning port, but sadly that hasn’t been the case.

    Perhaps now that Apple outfits the Pros with USB-C this will change.  The “minor sales to the tinkerers” represent the memes that drove and will continue to drive Apple to be the worlds greatest company...do not undersestimate them.
    GeorgeBMac
  • Reply 57 of 88
    If this were the only shortcoming of the new iPads there would be reason to get upset. As it stands, Apple's walled garden has shut out the iPad Pro from the pro market. iOS is seen as a toy operating system. It makes it impossible to do so many things that pros need to do like manage thousands of files or compile code or manage a network or ...
    Really? Because I am a professional and I use my iPad(s) for a lot of things, all of them being catered around my workflow. 
    williamlondon
  • Reply 58 of 88
    If this were the only shortcoming of the new iPads there would be reason to get upset. As it stands, Apple's walled garden has shut out the iPad Pro from the pro market. iOS is seen as a toy operating system. It makes it impossible to do so many things that pros need to do like manage thousands of files or compile code or manage a network or ...


    Give it a rest already!

    Here's something to help you:


    williamlondon
  • Reply 59 of 88
    dewmedewme Posts: 1,794member
    shrave10 said:

    The constant complaints that all boil down to pointing out that an iPad Pro is not a MacBook Pro are beyond tired. It’s like complaining that a Corvette isn’t a “pro” vehicle because it doesn’t have three quarter ton cargo carrying capacity, four wheel drive, and a 500 lb ft turbo diesel engine. There’s a reason why Chevrolet makes both Corvettes and Silverado Pickups. They are two different products that appeal to both different uses ...
    The two different uses argument was valid 8 & 1/2 years ago when the AX chip was in it's neanderthal stage.  Now it's at 7nm and more powerful than many PC notebooks.  There is no need to compromise.  If Mr. Jobs were alive, he would probably be looking at Craig Federighi and asking, "What the heck are you waiting for?"   This product needs to be taken to new markets, i.e., mouse driven markets that the higher priced MacBooks are not reaching ex. 85% education that is now lost to Chromebooks and PC's and overseas markets where MacBooks are rarely spotted.  It's now eight years and the iPad with it's current feature set has shown us that it is fully capable of losing these markets.  Time to change the playbook.  Hopefully the keyboard - tracking pad patent published at patentlyapple.com today may help the iPad reverse the last 26 consecutive quarters of sales decline. 
    Again, what is behind the motivation to morph the iPad Pro into a MacBook Pro? If the argument is the performance of the A-Series chips then putting the A-Series chip in a MacBook would solve this non-iPad “problem.” And no, I didn’t suggest that the iPad and MacBook serve non-overlapping mutually exclusive use cases. Just about every UI equipped product in Apple’s lineup has a swath of overlapping features including music, email, messaging, alarms, notifications, calendar, etc. There are simply some use cases that each platform is better suited to serve based on its form factor and primarily user interaction model. As long as Apple continues to offer the luxury of having both iPad and MacBook products for sale there is no reason to suggest that Apple unify these two products into one any more than Chevy unify a sports car and a pickup truck into a single product. If that is the goal then one could argue that the MacBook Pro should simply be equipped with a touch screen, Apple Pencil support, and as previously noted, an A-Series chip. 

    Apple’s penetration into education markets and cost sensitive overseas markets is not being inhibited by lack of a mouse pointer based UI. Those markets are driven by price, not mouse pointers. Apple has shown time and again that they have no interest in competing on price. Whether Apple sticks an Intel chip or one of their own in a computing device they aren’t going to drive a product down-market to capture the bottom feeders. Apple is a premier quality luxury brand whose massive profitability is driven by extremely high levels of customer loyalty, attachment, and stickiness across a continuously expanding ecosystem of interoperable systems, products, and services. There is zero motivation for Apple to emulate the PC or Android market players to gain market share. If Apple's profitability biased strategy wasn’t working so magnificently the top of the dung pile Android and PC players like a Alphabet and Microsoft wouldn’t be doing everything they can possibly do to copy Apple's profitability strategy. 
    chia
  • Reply 60 of 88
    auxioauxio Posts: 1,920member
    auxio said:
    Rayz2016 said:
    If this were the only shortcoming of the new iPads there would be reason to get upset. As it stands, Apple's walled garden has shut out the iPad Pro from the pro market. iOS is seen as a toy operating system. It makes it impossible to do so many things that pros need to do like manage thousands of files or compile code or manage a network or ...

    If only there was some other profession outside network management, it might have a chance. 
    And if only the way people work could change over time.  Now if you'll excuse me, I have to get back to feeding punch cards into my mainframe...
    People WILL change - when the change helps them.   But not because Jony decided they should.
    So you're saying that finding new ways to organize data which eliminates the need for file management doesn't help people?  Or wireless headphones and cloud data storage which eliminate the need for connecting a bunch of cables to your device doesn't?  Some people simply don't want to change, even if it actually does help them simplify things.

    The iPad is a great opportunity to rethink the way we do things.  I personally can't wait to eliminate all of the overhead around creating apps so that I can focus on actually creating them.  Bring on the future!
    edited November 28 chiakruegdude
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