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Apple has upgraded its entry-level iPad, releasing a 7th generation model with an increased screen size that retails for just US$329.
The latest incarnation of the perennially popular Apple tablet was revealed during the annual keynote on September 10, along with the latest iPhone range and a new Apple Watch.
Here are all the features of the latest iPad and when it’s expected to hit the shelves.
As predicted, Apple has opted for a size increase in their 7th generation iPad. Now the garden variety model comes with a 10.2-inch screen with Retina display.
Boasting around 3.5 million pixels, this screen is designed to better cater to augmented reality and additional features including a floating onscreen keyboard, which lets users type with one hand.
It’s also compatible with a host of extras found in higher-spec models, as Apple’s vice president of Product Marketing, Greg Joswiak, explained.
“The new iPad packs even more value into our most popular and affordable iPad model featuring a bigger 10.2-inch Retina display, support for Apple Pencil and for the first time, the full-size Smart Keyboard.”
This model is again being touted as education-friendly, and comes with Apple Pencil support. That’s the first-generation pencil, by the way, and it’s sold separately, but still it signals an upgrade.
It is also compatible with a full-size smart keyboard, which will be a welcome addition for many. Again, this is sold separately by Apple.
Cameras on the new 10.2 are pretty standard, with an 8mp rear-facing camera and a 1.2mp front facing lens. Apple does note that these, combined with advanced sensors and the 3.5 million pixel screen, will lend themselves to augmented reality.
Under the hood, the iPad 10.2-inch has the A10 Fusion chip. That gives it a boost in processing speed on the previous generation but is not as powerful as the A10X Fusion chip found in the Pro.
Meanwhile, it ships with the new operating system iPadOS. Much has been written about the new features this software offers, but Greg Joswiak probably explains it best.
“The new iPad was built to run iPadOS, which introduces powerful new ways to multitask, manage and mark up documents, use Apple Pencil and view more information at a glance on a redesigned Home screen,” he said.
“This new iPad with iPadOS takes everything people love about our most popular iPad and makes it even better for creating, learning, working and playing.”
Meanwhile, unlocking is via TouchID, rather than the FaceID found on the higher-spec iPad offerings.
In a first for Apple, the iPad 10.2 comes with a fully recycled aluminium enclosure, which speaks to Apple’s aim to be more environmentally responsible. Colours available are Rose Gold, Space Gray, and Silver.
Some will be disappointed to learn the charging port is Lightning, rather than USB-C, but then Apple is serving up some pretty neat features in a very affordable device, so the lack of USB-C is a small price to pay.
The entry-level seventh generation iPad is available for pre-order now and is due to hit the shelves on September 30.
Starting at just US$329 (AU$529) with 32GB storage, it remains Apple’s most affordable model with Tech Radar offering the following comments after a hands-on review:
“Using it for a few minutes, it’s pretty clear what Apple’s trying to do here: there are now iPads with Pencil and keyboard support at a huge range of price points, and this new iPad (with, presumably, the added functionality and desktop-class browser in iOS 13) should stack up as a powerful, flexible competitor to a Chromebook or cheap Windows laptop.
“But nothing about this design or spec sheet is ultra-cutting edge: it’s a bunch of Apple’s best stuff from years past in a familiar case with a slightly bigger screen. It’s hard to ask for more at $329 — but that’s probably the point.”
The iPad 10.2 will also have a dedicated Fusion enclosure available within the next few months.
You can learn more about our extensive range of enclosures and stands here.