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Apple considering USB 3.0 port for 12.9-inch iPad Pro, sources say

iPad Pro with Stylus Render - 5

The rumored 12.9-inch iPad Pro could be the first Apple tablet with a USB 3.0 port. Sources say the Cupertino company is considering different connectivity options for faster data transfer, as well as the ability to hook up a wired keyboard or mouse.

“Apple is now considering adding USB ports and adopting so-called USB 3.0 technology,” reads a Wall Street Journal report, which comes just hours after Bloomberg first revealed that the iPad Pro won’t enter mass production until September.

While Apple’s existing iPads are used mostly for media consumption — watching movies and TV shows, playing games, and browsing the web — it’s thought the larger iPad Pro will be aimed at those who want a tablet that’s capable of replacing a laptop.

Its larger screen will allow for better multitasking and make a plethora of productivity tasks a whole lot easier, and adding a USB port to the mix could make backing up and transferring data, and connecting useful peripherals like keyboards, mice, and even printers, much easier.

One source familiar with Apple’s plans says the company has “continued to rework” some of the iPad Pro’s features to get them right. Another area of focus is thought to be faster charging — which is already making its way into the latest smartphones.

The source noted, however, that “it remains uncertain if the final design will have these new features.” Apple, of course, has declined to comment on the claims.

The Journal also weighs in on the rumored 12-inch Retina MacBook Air, which it says has already entered mass production. Apple will manufacture “large quantities” during the second quarter, its sources claim, and while a launch schedule remains unclear, it seems Apple could surprise us with the new notebook during next week’s event.

Killian Bell

Killian Bell is a 20-something technology journalist based in a tiny town in England. He has an obsession with that little company in Cupertino...