After launching the iPad Pro which comes with a 12.9-inch screen, Apple is planning to stop selling its 11-inch MacBook Air. According to AppleInsider, the company will replace it with a 15-inch version. But that going big is not the only way, is illustrated by plans to introduce a 4-inch iPhone in 2016. After all, the Apple Watch success shows that small smart devices are selling just as good. Apple’s smartwatch sales reached a market share of 19% in Q3-2015, according to IDC. The company is now close to market leader Fitbit, which holds a market share of 22%.
Total smartwatch shipments reached 21 million in Q3, with Apple selling 3.9 million Watches. The battle for sales in this product range is intensifying, as we previously reported. Not only the Swiss are entering the fight, but Chinese Xiaomi is taking a big slice of the pie as well. Its relatively cheap Mi Band resulted in a market share of 17.4%, giving Xiaomi a third place. However, 97% of the sales shipped within China. Samsung, another big name, did not make it into the top 5 of producers. The hunt for no. 1 position is wide open, since Fitbit has an advantage of companies deploying Fitbit devices to its employees. Compared to last year, total wearable sales increased with 197.6% percent, so the good news for all is that the pie gets bigger and bigger.
With the lower costs for large screens with a high clarity, going big is a lucrative option. Bigger versions of products can be placed higher in the market with much better margins. However, the iPad Pro which is significantly larger than traditional tablets, could cannibalize Apple’s laptop products, called MacBook (Air). Therefore, the company is likely to stop the 11-inch MacBook Air. This might drive consumers to the iPad Pro. MacBook Air users get a fresh alternative with a 15-inch version, which could be launched at next year’s WWDC, according to AppleInsider. As a result, the MacBook-range will feature 12-,13- and 15-inch versions. The latter two will be available in the thinner Air version.
So for now not really groundbreaking new products or features. However, according to AppleInsider, the company could introduce a 3D printer, but unfortunately not in the near future. Apple filed for a patent which shows that it is investigating 3D color printing technology. That is certainly interesting news for the printing-industry, because if there’s one company that can bring a technology to the wider public, it’s Apple.