KGI Securities analyst Ming-Chi Kuo claims Apple’s long-rumored 12.9-inch “iPad Pro” tablet will enter mass production sometime in September or October, and will optionally use a Force Touch-enabled stylus.
The well-connected analyst issued a new research note on Wednesday, a copy of which was obtained by AppleInsider. In the note, Kuo portrayed Force Touch input on the rumored device as “an evolution, rather than a revolution.”
Kuo believes manufacturer Cheng Uei will win the exclusive assembly rights for the Bluetooth stylus, which will be sold separately from the “iPad Pro.” Kuo expects Apple to ship about a million styluses, compared to as many as 3.5 million of the larger iPad devices.
“We also believe a Force Touch-enabled stylus will enhance productivity as it would offer more precise operation than using only fingers,” Kuo wrote. “Technically, we believe the stylus can be made compatible with iPad models other than the 12.9-inch version, but it depends on the support of software.”
Kuo says while Force Touch wouldn’t exclusively drive a huge amount of hardware sales, Apple’s desire for consistency across its devices will see the feature implemented on all of the company’s products in the future.
Kuo’s prediction of a September/October timeframe for mass production would rule out any possible unveiling for the 12.9-inch tablet at Apple’s predicted September 9th media event, indicating a premiere sometime later in the fall, likely in time for the holiday shopping season.
A report earlier today indicated that a larger iPad was beginning to make an appearance in iOS app analytics logs, indicating that the “iPad Pro” was in testing.