A recent report from the International Data Corporation (IDC) claims that the rumored arrival could drive sales in the 2-in-1 tablet market.

IDC believes that the bigger iPad with a detachable screen could shake things up in a market which has suffered a significant slowdown of late. Sales of tablets have been declining, throwing doubt on the profitability of continued investment in the development of new tablets.

IDC Says Apple iPad Pro Could Disrupt Tablet Market

Hope yet for tablet sales according to IDC

The new report strikes a hopeful note for manufacturers currently working on new tablets. While the Apple iPad Pro is still just a rumor, Microsoft’s Surface Pro 4 with Windows 10 is expected to be released soon.

In fact IDC predicts that the tablet market will grow 86.5% year-on-year in 2015, or roughly 14.7 million units. According to the report, a slowdown in growth may be due to high prices and unattractive designs.

Competition between manufacturers is increasing in the tablet market, with 40 companies now offering devices compared to just 14 two years ago. The Apple iPad Pro is not alone in the 2-in-1 tablet market, with the Microsoft Surface Pro 4 and Android-based 2-in-1 tablets expected to shake things up.

Apple and Microsoft key players in crowded market

“Commercial segments will play a crucial role in the future of 2-in-1’s. It will take some time but we expect that once IT departments are done evaluating Windows 10 and the awaited iPad Pro, they will start migrating some their portable PC and tablet installed base towards 2-in-1’s,” IDC said.

The good news for consumers is that the average price of the soon to be released tablets is expected to fall below $300. IDC believes that the combined market share of tablets would increase to 39.5% in 2019, compared to 18.6% in 2014.

According to rumors reported by Apple Insider, the iPad Pro will feature a massive 12.9-inch display, a pressure-sensitive stylus and improvements to the iOS operating system. Other rumors include the inclusion of a detachable keyboard and a second connection port.

Although consumer use of tablets may generally be declining, the devices are used in official functions around the world, including in the UK Parliament. Tablets are often pushed as a green alternative which helps to save printing thousands of pages of documents on paper.