A rumored keyboard cover for Apple's upcoming iPad could make it a better tablet for business users.
The so-called iPad 5 is expected to be unveiled tomorrow (Oct. 22), and rumors suggest Apple might also show off a keyboard "smart cover," akin to the sturdy, snap-on Type Cover that debuted with Microsoft's Surface tablet last year.
Third-party wireless keyboard add-ons are already available for current iPad models, but the rumored cover would be the first full QWERTY keyboard for iPad that doubles as a screen protector.
A former Apple employee revealed that the company has completed a prototype for the keyboard smart cover, CNET reports. However, Apple has not confirmed that the add-on will debut at tomorrow's event.
If it does, it could make Apple's tablet a better option for on-the-go business users. It could also make the iPad more viable for bring-your-own-device offices, where access to a reliable keyboard is required.
Reports suggest the iPad 5 will be a more business-friendly device overall. It's expected to pack a faster processor — either Apple's A6X chip or the faster 64-bit A7 chip that debuted on the iPhone 5s — for quicker multitasking and speedier browsing.
Rumors also suggest that the iPad 5 will maintain the impressive 12-hour battery life of its predecessor, despite the increased processing speed, so business users can stay productive while on the go.