Native trackpad support on iPad Pro opens the door to dual booting Windows 10 on ARM
When Apple switched from IBM PowerPC-based starting in 2006 it wasn’t long before it introduced its Boot Camp Assistant which allows Apple users to install Windows on a separate partition on their Macs and MacBooks. For some people, this was a major selling point as it allowed them to buy the preferred desktop or laptop but still enjoy wider compatibility with their office, or even dabble in other activities like PC gaming. The introduction of native mouse/trackpad support with the arrival of iOS 13.4 and the new Magic Keyboard accessory for iPad Pro brings a similar opportunity, except this time around running Windows 10 on ARM.
Why, you ask, would Apple want to do this especially given the talk is about Apple bringing macOS to ARM? I think the answer is similar to why it continues to offer support for Windows 10 on its Macs and MacBooks – that is to increase potential sales. Although the argument for doing so is not quite as compelling, as Windows 10 on ARM doesn’t have full support for x86 apps including those designed for the x86-64 (AMD64) architecture. However, Windows 10 on ARM offers full support for Windows Remote Desktop while also offering optimized support for Windows versions of Office. It would also appeal to users who continue to be frustrated with the file system on iOS and other little annoyances that you don’t experience on a macOS or Windows.
Further, iPads are also the only Apple devices to support touch screens and pen input, meaning that users would be able to enjoy the full Windows 10 touchscreen and Windows Ink experience as well. It would also cement the argument that the iPad is a proper laptop replacement in the short term while Apple continues to refine the iOS touch-first experience. If you are still not convinced by the possibilities that support for Windows 10 on ARM on the iPad could bring all you need to do is ask yourself one question: who would buy a Microsoft Surface if you could enjoy everything that iOS offers as well as the advantages of running Windows? Kerching!