Apple Introduces New 9.7-inch iPad, Discounted Price For Schools

Apple new iPad launch event live

The Apple online store is down ahead of Apple's education event in Chicago today.

Apple Inc. on Tuesday said it added support for its Pencil digital stylus to its entry-level iPad as the device maker tries to shore up its dwindling share of the USA education market.

The pricing of iPad is $329 for consumers and $299 for schools. Apple Pencil is available for purchase separately for Rs 7,600.

The biggest benefit to the new iPad with Pencil is the Apple Pencil itself, but there is also a bump in specifications that gives the 9.7-inch iPad some more impressive performance. But missing from the event was even stronger price competition against sub-$200 Chromebooks and Windows 10 devices which have taken share away from Apple due to their lower cost and integrated keyboards. Microsoft accounted for roughly 22 percent.

Also possible: If Apple's focus is making the iPad a low-priced Chromebook competitor, it could cut some of the frills like extra storage, one of the cameras or the headphone jack.

In addition, managed Apple IDs will include 200GB of iCloud storage for free. But between the new app, the Everyone Can Code initiative, and cheap hardware, one thing's for sure: Apple has its eye on students.

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The iPad itself also continues to face new tablet competitors.

Apple Watch is predicted to get its first redesign since launching in 2015, according to noted KGI analyst Ming-Chi Kuo, who expects the device to also feature a larger display, extended battery life and upgraded health monitoring features. Froggipedia, meanwhile, allows one to see the inner parts of a frog for study purposes - and lets you dissect it with the Apple Pencil.

The iPad is available to order today and starts shipping later this week.

This hints at new products and software aimed at students with plenty of rumours suggesting more affordable technology will revealed over the next few hours. It will work with updated versions of iOS apps such as Pages, Numbers and Keynote.

"We believe today's announcements will have a small impact on their education business, but an immaterial impact on their overall business", Munster wrote about Apple in a blog post today.

Chromebooks are popular due to their affordability, reliability, simplicity, quick boot-up and "because students seem to like the keyboard", said Alison Bullock, digital literacy support teacher with the Waterloo Region District School Board.

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