True to the rumors, Apple unveiled a new 9.7-inch iPad with Apple Pencil support during its “Let’s take a field trip” media event on Tuesday.
Apple is calling the new iPad its “lowest price” model, and says it sports the same Apple Pencil support as the iPad Pro. It sports Apple’s A10 Fusion processor, a 9.7-inch Retina Display, Touch ID, FaceTime HD front-facing camera, 8MP rear-facing camera with 1080P HD video, and full Apple Pencil support.
The new model is available in 32GB and 128GB configurations with Wi-Fi or Wi-Fi and LTE, and comes in silver, space gray, or gold. It doesn’t, however, include the iPad Pro’s Smart Connector, so it won’t support Apple’s own Smart Keyboard.
The new 9.7-inch iPad is priced starting at US$329, or $299 for education for the 32GB Wi-Fi model. It’s available for order today and will be in stores this week. Apple Pencil costs $99, or $89 for education. That means a base model iPad with Apple Pencil will cost $388 at educational pricing.
It’s great to see Apple making a push into education again, but the bottom line for most schools is price. At $299 without an Apple Pencil the new iPad is still going to be a hard sell compared to Chromebooks.
[Updated with additional information about the new iPad]