Lenovo has been doing it for five years, Google announced last year that they will do it this year, and now Apple is rumored to catch the same trend, launch a tablet dock with a speaker.
The rumor seems to come from Mark Gurman, who is quoted on MacRumors saying that he has hear that while Apple has already been rumored to launch a Echo Show type of smart home home hub this year, they are also rumored to work on a separate tablet dock for iPad, which should of course contain a larger speaker.
The rumor doesn’t say anything about what iPad might be compatible with this dock though, nor what the specs might be.
Sony actually launched a combined iPad/iPod/iPhone speaker system over 11 years ago called Sony RDPX200I where you could dock the iPad into the speaker, but that was solely a speaker and charger system.
Lenovo is the only company that’s consistently been launching tablet docks for years, seen in the photo here. These tablet docks have had a few different designs too over the years, from cylindrical to rectangular, and have been equipped with varying combinations of a louder speaker or stereo speakers with proper bass, some extra sets of mics, a power/charger feature, support for digital assistants such as Alexa or Google, and of course a quick docking stand for the tablet.
Lenovo has sold bundles with a tablet and smart docks with speakers for as little as $199 for a while, but obviously Apple is not going to launch a combo like that for $199.
But it will be fun to see if Apple can bring something new to this area, since there’s a lot of opportunities with a tablet dock as a tablet accessory.
This could bring Samsung back in this game again too, since they announced early in 2022 that they would launch the tablet styled Home Hub, but never did.
– Tom Bowen