iOS 9's iPad keyboard layout adds more legitimacy to iPad Pro / Plus claims

iOS 9's iPad keyboard layout adds more legitimacy to iPad Pro / Plus claims
With Microsoft and Samsung having already brought forth their very own pro-level tablets packing enlarged displays and powerful innards, it seems possible that Apple may be about to follow suit. Of course, the notion of the so-called iPad Pro / Plus has been prevalent for years, so it'd be presumptuous to begin counting chickens. But with iOS 9 offering treats like split-screen multitasking, there's added reason to believe that this elusive device could grace us with its presence in the near future, and a newly-discovered feature of the big software update throws even more weight behind the idea of a more sizeable Apple slate.

According to Steve Troughton-Smith, an individual renowned for delivering Apple-related insight, iOS 9's keyboard will be designed to adapt to the increased real estate offered by the bigger iPad. The iPad's keyboard in iOS 9, per screenshots released by Troughton-Smith, will adjust itself at larger (iPad Pro / Plus) resolutions, making use of additional space at its disposal. 

An entirely new row of keys, as can be seen from the screenshot below, will appear along the top of the keyboard interface, enriching the typing experience. Given that this unannounced iPad is said to be aimed towards professionals and will, supposedly, impinge on a space currently occupied by the MacBook, it looks like the keyboard will be stepped up accordingly. More keys over a larger canvas would be a definite plus for productivity, and and along with the new-look top row, there may be several other tweaks besides. 

iOS 9 iPad Pro / Plus keyboard layout (top) vs. iOS 9 iPad Air keyboard layout

The alternate characters page, as you can also see beneath, will be rather different to the current layout, with considerably more keys added. Since the default page will feature a number of symbols across the top, the current third symbols page may be discarded altogether, with Apple sticking to two pages of characters for the iPad Pro / Plus keyboard. The revised keyboard for the prospective larger slab looks a lot better thought-out, it must be said, and it's a rework that Troughton-Smith sees as confirmation that an iPad Pro / Plus is a part of Apple's plans.

iOS 9 iPad Pro / Plus keyboard layout (top) vs. iOS 9 iPad Air keyboard layout

A larger iPad does seem very likely now, but references and clues of this nature don't always tell the full story. Still, do you think Apple's line-up is bereft of a tablet in the 12-inch display category? Let us know of your thoughts in the comments. 

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