Put this one in the category of “Too Crazy to Ignore: According to a Twitter leak, Apple is developing a “smaller version of macOS” that will run “exclusively” on the new M2 iPad Pro next year.
We agree—there are numerous reasons to be skeptical. For starters, Majin Bu, the leaker, doesn’t have much of a track record aside from case leaks and the yet-to-be-confirmed 14-inch iPad. For another, aside from the two sharing the same Stage Manager feature in iPadOS 16 and Ventura, there is little evidence that Apple is working to merge the iPad and Mac lines. Finally, limiting such a significant change to a single iPad Pro model would enrage many users.
Still, it’s an intriguing, if not thrilling, rumor. With a blazing-fast processor, stunning ProMotion display, Thunderbolt, and Face ID, the iPad Pro remains a device with untapped potential. While there are a few features exclusive to M1-powered iPads in iPadOS 16, Apple hasn’t really elevated the iPad Pro above its other less-expensive iPads.
According to Bu, the “simplified” version of macOS 14 will have “a 25% larger macOS UI,” presumably optimized for touch. However, because iPadOS already supports trackpad navigation with the Magic Keyboard, the overall macOS experience would remain unchanged. There’s also a unified navigation system now that Apple has added Stage Manager to both iPadOS 16 and macOS Ventura.
So maybe it’s not so crazy after all. As it stands, there aren’t many reasons to choose an iPad Pro over an iPad Air, and a “lite” version of macOS would completely change the game. We won’t know if this rumor is true until Apple unveils the next version of macOS at WWDC in June—or until Mark Gurman or Ming-Chi Kuo confirms it—but for the time being, we’re content to fantasize.