iPad Pro Could the iPad Pro run a desktop OS?

Discussion in 'iPad' started by Kyle4, Sep 4, 2016.

  1. Kyle4 macrumors 6502

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    #1
    Hypothetically, if Apple later down the line creates a separate OS for its iPad lines that's more along the lines of a hybrid of iOS/macOS, would the Pro lines be able to handle it?

    My assumption is that it wouldn't be an issue for the 12.9' model since it has 4GB of RAM, but I'm curious what others think and if this is something that you'd be interested in seeing somewhere down the line.

    I love my iPad Pro, and believe if it could support external drives or downloading torrents it'd be a true replacement for my iMac.
     
  2. Suckfest 9001 macrumors 65816

    Suckfest 9001

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    #2
    It should be possible. The iPad Pro is much more powerful than a Surface 3, for example. It should be able to run OSX, but the overhead is not worth it, considering you wouldn't be able to do any "power user" tasks. Most of the processing power would be used up just rendering the OS.
     
  3. pika2000 macrumors 68030

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    #3
    Buying an iPad Pro to download torrents? A $300 Windows laptop can do that job now, and better.
     
  4. Kyle4 thread starter macrumors 6502

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    #4
    That's not why I bought it, I was just using an example of something that I can do on my iMac that I can't on the iPad. For all of my other uses the Pro is perfect (web consumption, videos, reading comics etc)
     
  5. RudySnow macrumors regular

    RudySnow

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    #5
    You're looking for a very hypothetical answer to a very hypothetical question.
     
  6. jamesrick80 macrumors 68020

    jamesrick80

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    #6
    No....otherwise the A series would be in MacBooks now...
     
  7. username: macrumors 6502a

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  8. Kyle4 thread starter macrumors 6502

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    #8
    Mostly I was interested in starting a discussion as to whether or not the Pro would be capable of running a more desktop like OS (though not quite Sierra) based on its specs. I'd like to think that hypothetically all it would take is a software update for it access external drives and the like since things like The Leef Bridge exist.

    I'm happy with what the Pro does, there's only one or two things keeping it from being the perfect desktop replacement for me, which is why I still need my iMac for a couple of things.
     
  9. Suckfest 9001 macrumors 65816

    Suckfest 9001

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    #9
    Only for jailbreak.
     
  10. M. Gustave macrumors 68000

    M. Gustave

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    #10
    iPad can already access external drives, they just need to be wireless.

    Reevaluate your workflow. Look into how other people are tackling the tasks you need to get done. It might actually be possible to do everything you want, right now.

    "Desktop replacement" doesn't mean making the iPad into a desktop computer clone.
     
  11. Kyle4 thread starter macrumors 6502

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    #11
    You make a really good point. I could probably use iCloud Drive to access files in the cloud. To access my own drives wirelessly I bought Filebrowser. The closest I've come to downloading files is using goodreader and using Vuze remote to add files to my iMac.

    I don't have a laptop so my Pro fills that need. I can do about 90% of what I want to on it. For that alone it truly is a great product.
     
  12. Traverse macrumors 603

    Traverse

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    #12
    Hardware wise, I don't see why it couldn't run OS X or especially Windows (which runs on such a wide variety of hardware already) if you ignore the ARM factor.

    Wether it would be worth it? I'd question it. The iPad Pro is supposedly more powerful than the 2010/2011/2012 (?) MacBook Airs, so it should be possible.
     
  13. Osty macrumors 6502a

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    #13
    Buying a $300 Windows laptop to download torrents? A $45 Raspberry Pi can do that job now, and better. It'll draw less power too. ;)
    --- Post Merged, Sep 4, 2016 ---
    @M. Gustave is on the money (again).

    If you want the iPad Pro to be your primary system, draw up a list of tasks you do and apply some lateral thinking to the problem. Apps like Workflow, Pythonista and Editorial and a good understanding of Document Pickers and Providers can actually make many repetitive tasks as fast/efficient as on mac OS. Check out the Canvas podcast at Relay.FM for inspiration.

    As noted you can access external drives wirelessly. You can torrent on a Raspberry Pi or similar device or even use an on-demand Virtual Private Server like DigitalOcean.

    I've personally found that coupling the iPad to a Linux server I control to be a great combination.

    Figuring out this stuff has actually made computers fun for me again.
     
  14. ctg7w6 macrumors regular

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    #14
    ThIs may come off as rude. I completely do not intend for that. But what you suggest, sounds like to me, is working to make the iPad a part of your life. Convenient or helpful technology should come in to help your life, not require more work to do something you already could do before. I.e. People had to learn to drive a car when others drove a horse and buggy, but the car was so much better that it was worth it.

    Although I love what I use my iPad for, the things that I do on my MacBook are easier to do on my MacBook. Quite a bit of it I could do on my iPad, but it is much harder to accomplish. The iPad has come a long way... It can do a majority of the things people need it to do. But for many things it is not EASIER to do.

    This is where I feel the iPad is failing. Apple needs to innovate. If that means an option for a desktop OS, so be it. If they can come up with something else, I'll be happy to try it. But this is the problem I always run into... People telling me that I can do something on my iPad that I don't currently do. Most of the time, I already knew that I COULD do it on my iPad, but SHOULD I? Probably not. Sure I could put it into my workflow, but if it increases the work, it's not worth it.

    I am still in the situation that the iPad is wonderful for consumption and has truly made my life easier. But for all but the simplest production, using it is a nuisance that isn't worth it. For now, I must stick with the MacBook and iPad combo rather than one device. I hate this, but it's where I'm at. No single device at the moment shortens my workflow (I.e my MacBook can do everything if I wanted, but the addition of the iPad makes things easier).

    I would LOVE a single device solution (in the form of an iPad). I had hoped the Pro would be this. At the moment, at least for me, it isn't. I do intend to buy one in the next year, however (use Air 2 now).

    Again, I am not ragging on you, and I love the iPad, but I am just kind of tired of people trying so hard to make it a single device solution when Apple should be selling the product's uses to us, not the other way around.
     
  15. Abazigal macrumors 604

    Abazigal

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    #15
    For me, the iPad represents the perfect package of battery life, portability and ease of use and I don't mind investing more time and effort into learning how to get more done on my iPad.

    You can't just copy and paste a desktop OS onto a tablet with a different set of controls and expect things to work the same as before. Sometimes, in order to do something better than before, you have to be prepared to unlearn what you already know and be willing to embrace a new way of doing things.

    For example, I am using a clipboard manager app called "copied" to get around the need to keep hopping between apps as I copy and paste stuff. The innovative manner in which it is implemented (using a 3rd party keyboard to insert text snippets) can actually make the process more seamless and intuitive compared to a conventional desktop paradigm. But the app sat unopened on my home screen for weeks and it would take me another few weeks to get used to it.

    The end result is that I am now doing a lot of stuff on my iPad that I couldn't do before on a conventional PC (or at least not do as easily).

    To me, the iPad is just like any other tool. What you hope to get out of it depends on how much effort you put into learning how to use it effectively.
     
  16. Pakaku macrumors 68000

    Pakaku

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    #16
    If you want a desktop OS in a really portable case, that's what the Retina MacBook is for.
     
  17. joeblow7777 macrumors 601

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    #17
    Or any number of Windows hybrid devices, but I guess I shouldn't say the "W" word. :p
     
  18. M. Gustave, Sep 5, 2016
    Last edited: Sep 5, 2016

    M. Gustave macrumors 68000

    M. Gustave

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    #18
    @Abazigal already gave you a great reply, but I would just add that it should be obvious that the iPad requires you to Think Different® because it is touch-based, assumes ubiquitous internet, app-based rather than file-based, and is essentially port-less (all wireless I/O). These all go completely against the legacy x86 desktop/laptop paradigm: pointer device and keyboard input, massive local storage and data processing, user as file manager, and physical ports for any conceivable I/O or peripherals. Yes, there are laptops with touchscreens, "hybrids", and laptops that mimic the iPad's wireless view of the world, but it's never the same level of integration, and user experience as when you start with that idea from the beginning.
     
  19. Newtons Apple macrumors P6

    Newtons Apple

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    #19
    It might be able to run OS X but it would have problems running the apps, especially the more intensive apps. It would bog down quickly.
     
  20. Night Spring macrumors G5

    Night Spring

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    #20
    I think this is a good analogy of the transition from desktop to touch based computing. And while it may now be obvious that cars are better than horse and carriage, I bet in the earliest days of automobiles, a lot of people thought why bother with automobiles? Horse and buggy works perfectly well. A car breaks down, you need to call a mechanic to fix it. Horses just keep going as long as you feed them! ;)

    I think we are still in the early days with touch computing, where, for instance, not all printers accept wireless printing. This is comparable to early days of automobiles, where not every town had gas stations, but they all had stables to feed your horses. So back in those days, ensuring your car had enough gas to make a trip from point A to point B required careful planning, and must have seemed more of a headache than was worth it to many. Similarly, there are many things about iPad based computing today that require a lot of thought and workarounds, and make people wonder why go through the trouble. Or make people wonder why Apple doesn't add all sorts of features to the iPad yesterday. But gas stations didn't suddenly spring up in every town overnight. Apple does need to add more robust file management features to iOS, and app developers need to port more desktop class apps to touch. So at the moment, I think it is perfectly legitimate for people to feel "why bother?" with trying to use iPads for productivity. Or to feel frustrated because iOS is almost but not quite there. But I do believe iOS will grow up to be a "desktop class" OS, and Apple isn't going to build a separate more desktop like OS just for tablets.
     
  21. Channan macrumors 68030

    Channan

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    #21
    These features don't require a desktop OS. Apple could easily add them to iOS if they wanted to. They just don't want to.

    The iPad could completely replace my MacBook Pro with just four features I'm not sure will ever get added.

    1. Mouse support. Touch is still the way to go for the majority of my usage, but occasionally I would like to dock my iPad and use a keyboard and mouse.

    2. User accessible file system. Sharing files between apps is an awful alternative to this feature. I should be able to download any file from any app and have it stored in one central location.

    3. Default apps. Why Apple won't allow me to change my default email, texting, browser, maps, etc. apps just baffles me. Not everyone wants to use the default iOS apps.

    4. Sideloading applications. I don't see this feature being added for a very long time, if ever, but it would be a major step towards making iOS a desktop application.

    I still fully enjoy using my iPad and it's my primary device, but I'm still not quite ready to give up my MacBook Pro without these features.
     
  22. M. Gustave macrumors 68000

    M. Gustave

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    #22
    So you want iOS to turn into Android, which I guess isn't surprising given your avatar. But I have to wonder, is there an "Android as desktop replacement" movement out there? I don't frequent Android forums, so I don't know. But these debates seem to be very iPad-centric.
     
  23. Michael Goff macrumors G4

    Michael Goff

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    #23
    Yeah, it happens. There are even docks for Android phones to turn them into desktop replacements. Andromium is a good example.
     
  24. Channan macrumors 68030

    Channan

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    #24
    When Android gets a few features iOS had first, do you say Android is turning into iOS? I don't see how wanting features that another platform has can be spun into a bad thing. Besides, all of those things I listed are also features on Windows and macOS, but you only brought up Android.

    Also, not sure what my avatar has to do with anything. I found this picture a few years ago and thought it looked cool, so I used it.
     
  25. Osty macrumors 6502a

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    #25
    There's also Maru OS, which is quite compelling as a concept.

    Android is a very good operating system at heart (i.e. Linux) but it's not without problems: fragmentation, lack of decent tablet apps and piss-poor OEMs not least among them. I did Android for several years and there was a lot to like about the platform.

    In a lot of respects, Android is shaping up to be the Windows of the mobile age. Problem is, Google has split their attention between Android and ChromeOS. The minute they bring them together in a unified OS and put in a tablet/phablet/phone that's dockable and doesn't suck, both Apple and Microsoft will have some serious questions to ask.

    Mind you, that's no easy task to pull off ;)
     

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