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“Why the iPad Pro Needs Xcode”

Steve Streza, writing on the state of some iPad apps and developers stretching their iPhone UIs for the big screen:

App developers don’t feel this pain as much, because they’re not living on iPad. For 8+ hours a day, they’re stuck using Xcode on a Mac. They aren’t living and breathing the idioms and design patterns of great iPad apps. Instead they’re stuck on Macs, usually sitting on desks with mice or trackpads, using a very underpowered and unwieldy iPad simulator, to build apps you touch with your hands on the couch.

Xcode running directly on the iPad Pro could fix many of those problems. You now have a tablet powerful enough to run an IDE, with a very nice keyboard cover, and a screen big enough to encompass all the functionality of Xcode, capable of testing almost every feature of every iOS device ever made. You can code with your keyboard and test with multitouch. You could work on a desk and take your whole development environment with you on the couch, bed, or plane.

I couldn't agree more with all the points mentioned by Steve, especially about the potential benefits in education. As I wrote yesterday, the iPad Pro's hardware demands to be used by new kinds of apps. This includes Apple.

Fortunately, I want to believe there's some hope here. Over the past few months, I've personally heard about an iPad Pro version of Xcode in early stages, being demoed internally at Apple. I don't know if this will ever actually happen, but it sure would make for a nice surprise at WWDC next year.

My fingers are crossed.