This week, Apple released a 128GB version of its fourth generation iPad, with a high-resolution 9.7-inch Retina screen. This is the first iOS model with more than 64GB of storage, and as tablet variations from other manufacturers begin to crowd the iPad, bigger storage better positions the iPad for productivity applications.

Philip Schiller, senior vice president of Worldwide Marketing for Apple, said in a statement that the new model, with twice the storage capacity of the previous 64GB versions, provides “even more reason to use the iPad” for all of a user’s business and personal needs.

Productivity Device

In addition to being a hit among consumers, the iPad is a central reason why Apple has been successfully making inroads into the business market. The company said that nearly all of the Fortune 500, and more than 85 percent of the Global 500, are currently using or testing the popular tablet. Many companies that had been wary of supporting Mac computers are now recognizing the iPad as the leading tablet.

The newest model is targeted at professionals for whom the additional storage can make the iPad a more useful device in their work. By positioning the tablet as more of a productivity device, Apple is moving to counter Microsoft’s effort to market tablets using its Windows 8 OS, particularly its Surface model, as devices for getting work done.

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More Gigs Mean More Money 

The new 128GB version, Apple said, will be useful for businesses that need to store such storage-hungry files as those for 3D CAD, X-rays, video or music editing, project blueprints, training videos and service manuals.

In its announcement, Apple cited the testimony of Rim Buntinas, CEO of WaveMachine Labs, who said with his company’s Auria app for 48 track recording, and with the 128 GB iPad’s “portability and all-day battery life, iPad has revolutionized recording for audio professionals.”

The new 128GB version, which goes on sale next week, has a suggested retail price of US$ 799 for the Wi-Fi version and US$ 929 for the Wi-Fi + Cellular model. It features Apple’s A6 chip, FaceTime HD camera and iOS 6.1, which supports LTE.