A couple of weird things have happened in the world of tech this week. Microsoft took to the stage at an Apple event to showcase Office productivity (who saw that coming?) and the iPad Pro was launched alongside a
Apple naysayers have been quick to point out that Steve Jobs once quipped "who wants a stylus?" but, funny anecdotes aside, what's interesting about iPad Pro is that big tablets are now a thing. Microsoft would argue that big tablets were already here - and they'd be right, the company's Surface Pro has proven successful in its own right - but with Apple joining the fray we can almost certainly expect big-screen tablet sales to soar.
These are, arguably, some of the most intriguing mobile devices in recent years. Whereas smartphones, phablets and small tablets are typically designed for checking Facebook, posting to Instagram, playing games and killing time you never knew you had, big tablets and hybrid devices are actually supposed to help you with work. And the array of accessories are also built with productivity in mind, we have clever little keyboards, docking stations and styli that are more advanced than ever before. Heck, you can even run multiple apps, side by side. This is 2015 after all.
There is a question of price, however, as big-screen tablets aren't cheap. iPad Pro will fetch $949 for a 128GB model when it arrives in November. Choose to add a Pencil ($99) and a Smart Keyboard ($169) and price quickly sails past the $1,000-mark. Similarly, Microsoft's Surface Pro 3 costs $899 for a 128GB model, and though the Surface Pen is included, it's another $130 for a Surface Pro Type Cover.
At these prices, it's hard to see how a big tablet represents good value alongside a proper laptop, but with Apple and Microsoft pushing such devices, it will fascinating to see the consumer and enterprise response. So let's ask the question: would you consider a big-screen 'Pro' tablet over a laptop? Let us know your thoughts using the comments facility below.