Apple “Let Loose” Event Scheduled for 7 May 2024

Originally published at: Apple “Let Loose” Event Scheduled for 7 May 2024 - TidBITS

Anticipate new iPads, possibly along with a new Apple Pencil and updated Magic Keyboards. But will the announcement make the iPad exciting again?

Keen to see upgrades for the Mini, easily my favourite iPad.


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Our question is if we’ll see changes—in hardware or in the version of iPadOS due a month later at WWDC—that make the iPad compelling to those for whom it has slowly descended into irrelevance behind the Mac and the iPhone.

That does seem to be the question. I have a perfectly nice iPad Pro 2021 M1 that I brought with me on my U.S. trips this month. I didn’t use it at all. And last month I used it exactly one time - for a Zoom where it was convenient to do it in another room and I didn’t want to disentangle my MBP from my desk.

It’s a weird problem. The devices themselves are quite nice, but I suspect that for MBP users they are sort of redundant.

Maybe a daily train commuter can make better use of them while commuting?

Otherwise I think it’s mostly an either-or: which is better for you, a Mac or an iPad. My sister just uses an iPad. And I know a few simpler users who are satisfied with that.

I’ve an iMac and two MBPros (one supplied by work) but my evenings and mornings in the kitchen are exclusively iPad time.

I think the issue is the stalling of potential for use in work. It hit a limit. I recall the initial use scenario was the sofa, sounds about right.

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Though I’ve been retired for a few years and no longer have to use the New York City Subways or Busses at least 5 days a week, I still would never consider using, or ever walking around or sitting with my iPhone, iPad or MacBook visible to other passengers. For many years “Apple Picking” has been a very big problem; bad people who have been trained to grab and snatch iPhones, iPads, etc., which will yield much higher rates than Apple’s competitors.

It’s also a problem in suburban transportation systems, and I’ve heard it’s a problem in other metropolitan areas too.

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Interesting. It’s not a problem here in Tokyo though.


I was on the road a lot last summer and fall. I took iPad Air m1 with me about half the time and MbPro 2017 the other half. Barely felt any difference.

The iPad gets my morning reading time, and my iMac gets my work time the rest of the day.

Upcoming trip off the us mainland this week, and I’m taking the iPad.

The touch interface is never going to feel as efficient to me as a keyboard mouse combo, but it mostly does the job.


For many years I have used an iPad extensively while touring in Japan. I subscribe to Gigsky mobile data, which uses local phone networks. I can then use it for Maps, Mail, Safari etc and hotspot my phone to it.

Also great for leisure reading and viewing travel PDFs.
I would be very surprised if someone tried to steal it in Japan (especially on a Shinkansen!).

Using the iPad at home to write this…

If I were taking train rides, especially Shinkansen trips, I would probably do the same. I have a cellular version with Softbank. That lets me get unlimited data independent of tethering both in Japan and also when traveling in the U.S. I just had no chance to use it. I don’t travel much. My two week trip to the U.S. was like a once-a-year thing. I work from home. And the iPad is sitting here next to my MBP. So why reach for it?

If I’m going out for a long afternoon I might take it with me in case I need terminal access to a server for an emergency. But I don’t really go anywhere.

My sister finds it a sufficient device for her needs. She doesn’t really do anything but email and check the web. That’s the same for another friend here in Japan who isn’t highly tech oriented.

I like the iPad. I just can’t find reasons to use it.

I doubt it.

We’ve had the debate on here before and I think you’re either a huge fan or reasonably apathetic (towards iPads). I fall into the latter category and can’t imagine anything Apple could do to change my mind.

This is despite me having access to many iPad versions of software I regularly use (Capture One, Photoshop, Affinity etc). Then again, I’m not a big user of apps on the phone either.

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The iPad is exciting for me as it is. I own a 12.9 pro (M2) and so does my daughter. She’s a graphical design artist and favors the iPad over her MBP. I use it as my travel companion when I do not need to schlepp my MBP, but most of all I sue it as my scores repository. I am a musician hobbyist and got fed up with carrying scores of scores. It is now all on my iPad in an app called ForScore. Not that this app needs the processing and pixel density of the iPad Pro but I do need the 12.9 screen real-estate to be able to read the notes properly. I was thrilled to read about the upcoming bigger iPad Pro for this very reason, though a 12.9 iPad Air sounds compelling too for a newbie to ForScore with better eyesight than mine.


I rely on my smaller iPad for work, but my home iPad I purchased a few years ago is too large for me at 12.9 inches. I plan to sell the iPad (1Tb) and would love to sell with the new keyboard on eBay and get a smaller one in this new crop.

I usually have sold on Gazelle or through Apple trade in, but they typically don’t take the keyboard (both are in excellent condition) and I would love to find someone who could use both.

I’ll see what Apple comes up with.

PS I anyone knows someone who would be interested in the iPad and keyboard, I can discuss a friend of TidBITs discount. If anyone knows of other places to sell than above, drop me a line.

I am still using the first-generation 11" iPad Pro (2018) with Magic Keyboard (2020), and the combination does what I always did very well - sketching, writing (typing), serving as second screen to my Mac, etc.

What I find frustrating about the iPad Pro is iPadOS. There is so much potential with iPad Pro, yet its capabilities seem to be constrained by iPadOS. I would love to bring the iPad along when I travel, especially during extended trekking trips. However, iPadOS does not offer any compelling features beyond what my iPhone can do and what I most needed (or wanted) - proper file management system and functions (e.g. rsync), running an IDE offline as a “super-calculator”, etc.

At this point I do not see the possibility of any of these becoming reality (except, perhaps, the plain vanilla calculator), nonetheless the iPad Pro continues to serve me well at what I use it for. So I will continue to use it instead of upgrading to a new one.

I used an iPad 2 (2011) while travelling in Japan and it worked really well. I asked the hotel staff to help me write down some Japanese phrases (e.g. “When is the last bus leaving?” and place names), and show it to the bus and taxi drivers, etc. That worked quite well (though I still missed the last bus one time). It is a good conversation starter in Kissa-ten’s too; I was able to show the photos and communicated quite a bit using gestures. I have not used an iPad on the train though; do people find that distracting and impolite?

The iPad hardware has been excellent for many years and the new devices will, in my opinion, likely provide only relatively small incremental upgrades (probably with higher prices for the OLED screens).

As others have said, the iPadOS is extremely lacking and there is no evidence that this will change anytime soon. Also, the App Store has rules which make its offerings uninteresting to me: things like the prohibition of compilers and the difficulty in providing complicated apps which appeal to a niche audience - something the Mac does very well.

As to making the iPad look more like a laptop with improved keyboards, Apple already has an outstanding line of laptops which work very well, cost less than iPad Pros w/KB and have a much better operating system. Aside from some drawing applications, which benefit greatly from the Pencil, I can see very few ways in which the iPad is an exciting device.

People here do not find that impolite. Most people are staring at their devices anyway.

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What I’d really like to see is for Apple to add touch-screen ability to their laptops.

I suppose that tastes vary, but I would not like a Mac with a touch screen. I find that using a large vertical touch surface is tiring and not very accurate. The trackpad on a MacBook (Pro) does a lot of things that a touch screen would do: scroll in any direction, pinch to zoom, etc. A touch screen would add weight and cost with little benefit in my opinion.


7:00 A.M. is awfully early; hopefully I’ll be able to reduce the blood in my caffeine system enough by then.

Ditto. I have both a Mini 5 and a Mini 6. I used my old Mini 4 as a trade-in for the 6. Unfortunately I have to keep the 5 as it has a critical application that won’t run on anything past iPadOS 14.4.2. The vendor passed away so it was never updated and I can’t find anything else as good for my requirements.

I certainly hope so! As an artist, I depend heavily on my iPad and use it often as my main tool for creating digital art. My question is… how can it be improved, other than a speed boost? What could they do to a pencil to make it better than it is?