The slow progression of the iPad

Dr. Drang posted a great piece comparing the early years of the Mac to the iPad, and this passage really struck me:

What’s surprising to me is how slow iPad software has advanced in the seven years since its introduction. I’ve always thought of the iPad as the apotheosis of Steve Jobs’s conception of what a computer should be, what the Mac would have been in 1984 if the hardware were available.

The original iPad was introduced in April 2010, about a year and a half before Steve Jobs passed away in October 2011. That means the vast majority of the iPad’s life on the market has been overseen by CEO Tim Cook, and I can’t help but wonder if the iPad’s trajectory would have been different under Steve? Did Steve have a vision for the iPad that would have pushed it further, faster?

I love my MacBook Pro and my iPad Pro, but like many nerds I wish the iPad ran a more capable operating system. The iPad Pro’s are super powerful machines hamstrung by the smartphone software they run. I hope the iPad’s continued sales slump convinces Apple that it’s time to do more. It’s time for the iPad to have its own version of iOS with tablet-specific features, yearly updates and focus. If Tim Cook and Apple are so bullish on the iPad, it’s time to put their money where their mouth is.

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