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Education Apple Hardware Technology

Apple Announces New $299 iPad With Pencil Support For Schools (theverge.com) 141

At its education event in Chicago today, Apple introduced a refreshed 9.7-inch iPad with Apple Pencil support. "The updated iPad will be available in Apple stores today, in silver, space gray, and a new gold finish," reports The Verge. "The tablet will include Touch ID, an HD FaceTime camera, 10 hours of battery life, an 8-megapixel rear camera, LTE option, and Apple's A10 Fusion chip." From the report: Apple previously lowered the price of its 9.7-inch iPad last year, with a base model starting at $329, but today it's going a step further for students. Apple is offering the new iPad to schools priced at $299 and to consumers for $329. The optional Apple Pencil will be priced at $89 for schools and the regular $99 price for consumers. This is obviously not the $259 budget iPad pricing that was rumored, but it does make it a little more affordable to students and teachers. This new iPad will be a key addition to Apple's lineup as it seeks to fight back against Google's Chromebooks. Apple's iPads and Mac laptops reigned supreme in U.S. classrooms only five years ago, accounting for half of all mobile devices shipped to schools in 2013. Apple has now slipped behind both Google and Microsoft in U.S. schools, and Chromebooks are dominating classrooms with nearly 60 percent of shipments in the U.S. Apple had some other non-hardware, education-themed announcements at its event today. "Apple demonstrated Smart Annotation, which allows teachers to mark up reports in Pages directly, and the company promised new versions of its iWork apps like Pages, Numbers, and Keynote that support the Apple Pencil," reports The Verge. "Teachers will also be able to use Macs to create digital books for their classrooms, and Apple is building a books creator into the Pages app." The company also announced a new augmented reality app called Froggipedia that lets students virtually dissect frogs using an Apple Pencil. The free iCloud offering for students has also been bumped up from 5GB to 200GB.
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Apple Announces New $299 iPad With Pencil Support For Schools

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  • Pencil (Score:3, Funny)

    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday March 27, 2018 @02:08PM (#56335355)

    $89 for the Apple Pencil? If a student uses it, how easy is this thing to lose?

    • If it is like the current models then it has no means of attachment to the iPad when not in use.
    • Re: (Score:2, Interesting)

      by Anonymous Coward

      This is where Apple's problem lies. I was reading an article about the new ChromeOS tablet from Acer they announced yesterday, and while it may not be as nice a piece of hardware, they said something about the stylus being available to schools in bulk for reasonable cost.

      So long as the iPad requires a $90 stylus, they won't make any serious inroads in education.

      • inroads in education where is loans and the school can force you to buy them just like with text books.

      • So long as the iPad requires a $90 stylus

        It's not required at all. Fingers will work just fine. They've just added support for it.

        • by rtb61 ( 674572 )

          Fingers on a keyboard and mouse work fine, tapping on a screen is stupidly slow. Going to give children computers in school, then they had better be creating lots of content on those computers ie notebooks with keyboards and trackpads, else you will just grind out empty consumers of content. It might feed Apple's bottom line but they know better and are very corrupt for pushing content consuming tablets rather than content creating notebooks. Students using computers should produce more content not less.

    • Re:Pencil (Score:4, Informative)

      by mspohr ( 589790 ) on Tuesday March 27, 2018 @04:04PM (#56336311)

      Logitech has one for $49 for the iPad... also keyboard and case.
      https://www.macrumors.com/2018... [macrumors.com]

    • If a student uses it, how easy is this thing to lose?

      . . . or get stolen.

      Apple is going the printer cartridge and razor blade route on this one. They won't make any money on the pads, but will make a killing selling the replacement pencils . . . which seem to go M.I.A. regularly.

    • $89 for the Apple Pencil

      How to find out if an Apple product is overpriced? Check if the last digit is a '9'.

  • by Locke2005 ( 849178 ) on Tuesday March 27, 2018 @02:09PM (#56335373)
    My daughter's school already switched from having a few iPads to issuing literally every student in the school their own Chromebook. Google's web-based office tools are okay, and probably the only option on something with only 32G of memory.
    • by DontBeAMoran ( 4843879 ) on Tuesday March 27, 2018 @02:12PM (#56335413)

      32GB of memory? Holy cow, that's four times the RAM in my gaming PC!

      Oh, you meant 32GB of storage.

      What happened to Slashdot? I thought this was a website for nerds.

      • by Anonymous Coward

        What happened to Slashdot? I thought this was a website for nerds.

        He was born in 2005. Have you seen the "what's a computer" commercial? He is the goblin child.

      • by sjbe ( 173966 )

        What happened to Slashdot? I thought this was a website for nerds.

        FAR too many of them have left. Slashdot doesn't have much geek cred left.

      • by DRJlaw ( 946416 )

        32GB of memory? Holy cow, that's four times the RAM in my gaming PC!

        Oh, you meant 32GB of storage.

        What happened to Slashdot? I thought this was a website for nerds.

        Yeah, nerds who remember that memory is not limited to dynamic random access memory, but includes storage technologies like bubble memory [wikipedia.org]. I mean, it's cute that you've recognized the distinction between immediate use memory and secondary storage, but us oldsters remember that "memory" used to be really weird [computerhistory.org] and the flash storage of today is fa

        • I'm old enough to remember when the only memory was magnetic cores threaded on wires... which was non-volatile, by the way.
    • by Mr D from 63 ( 3395377 ) on Tuesday March 27, 2018 @02:30PM (#56335557)
      The tablet form factor is not as useful in education as the notebook form factor.

      My kids schools use Chromebooks and they are used all the time. Kids need to be able type up reports, do research, move files, etc. No tablet is good for that. Keyboard and mouse/mouspad are the right tools for that job.

      IPads make great PR though.
      • by inking ( 2869053 )
        I very much disagree. When I was in high school, my backpack was stuffed with 300+ page thick paper books literally every single day. Maths, chemistry, biology. Those books have done irreparable damage to my back that I am making up for by staying healthy now, but will probably suffer from nonetheless once I get older.

        Working through a book on a laptop sucks. There are no two ways about it. An iPad coupled with something like LiquidText for reading and annotating and Notability for notes is godsend. This
    • My daughter's school already switched from having a few iPads to issuing literally every student in the school their own Chromebook.

      Those must be amazing Chromebooks if they last for all eternity, for every student coming in!

      What's that? Eventually the school could shift to something else again, the way they did to Chromebooks? HMM.

      I'm sure the Chromebooks are fine, but they wouldn't be as useful to students as an iPad with a Pencil, and I'm pretty sure not as durable.

      • by Anonymous Coward

        "I'm sure the Chromebooks are fine, but they wouldn't be as useful to students as an iPad with a Pencil, and I'm pretty sure not as durable."

        Right on the first, wrong on the second, and on the third, the chromebooks are much cheaper than the cheapest tablet and trivially replaceable. When you forget your chromebook, someone can hand you another and -- boom -- you're back in business.

        Chromebooks are way easier to adminster en mass, and so cost less for labor.

        iPads are a phenomenally bad choice for schools c

        • It's absurd to claim the Chromebooks are more useful. when you can just run Chrome to do anything on an iPad you could on the Chromoebook - but then you ALSO have tens of thousands of educational apps that are iPad only, and you ALSO have a pressure sensitive stylus for the screen which the Chromebook has nothing like.

          If you want to raise a classroom of people who do nothing but browse the web, I'm sure the Chromebook is fine. If you actually want educated children that are well-rounded, the iPad is superi

      • Durable? When did this happen? I hear of Apple shit breaking for looking at it the wrong way all the time.
    • Google has been caught [eff.org] repeatedly spying on kids. [eff.org] and no one gives a fuck because they're cheap. Privacy was never even an issue which came up. I work in K-12. Cheap > * It's fucking sad to see kids with such limited locked in walled garden devices and not real computers, especially the federal free lunch crowd we serve (i.e. poor as fuck). They're extremely limited (even more so because Enterprise enrolled) and they don't even know it.

      We're paying ~$235 per HP G4 Chromebook, having said that there are

  • by Anonymous Coward

    Less than 10% discount??? For other brands that wouldn't even register as a mention, never mind a headline!
    And a $89 stylus... Nice...

    • Apple has always offered a 10% education discount on most of their hardware. I'm not sure why they are trying to hype this up like it's something new.

  • by SeaFox ( 739806 ) on Tuesday March 27, 2018 @02:11PM (#56335391)

    The free iCloud offering for students has also been bumped up from 5GB to 200GB.

    How about you get with the times and give that to everyone, Apple?

    • Re:iCloud Storage (Score:5, Interesting)

      by torkus ( 1133985 ) on Tuesday March 27, 2018 @02:30PM (#56335549)

      lol seriously

      5GB is small enough to active discourage people from using it to back up their media vs other services that don't even lock you in but give you far more (or unlimited) free storage.

      Besides that, a $90 stylus that (unless apple forgot to announce it) has no way to attach to the ipad is overpriced and far too easily lost. How well do they really think that will go over? Once again, they ensure no one will use it.

      That's not even taking into account the fact that it's almost 1/3 of the cost for the iPad itself!! They're (badly) trying to pad the margin with another crappy accessory. Instead, a chromebook with an actual keyboard...yep.

      • by sjbe ( 173966 ) on Tuesday March 27, 2018 @02:50PM (#56335723)

        Besides that, a $90 stylus that (unless apple forgot to announce it) has no way to attach to the ipad is overpriced and far too easily lost. How well do they really think that will go over? Once again, they ensure no one will use it.

        Yeah I have several problems it the Apple Pencil.
        1) Round so it easily rolls off tables if you set it down. They made it pretty instead of functional.
        2) The iPad isn't designed with a place to store it when not in use rendering it clumsy to transport
        3) Unless you are a fairly specific kind of artist (I'm not) the app support SUCKS. I'm an engineer and I can conceive of lots of uses for something like this but Apple isn't making it easy.
        4) Far too expensive for something that is easy to loose and can't be stored easily
        5) Did I mention the apps SUCK. Even for note taking which should be the most obvious thing in the world.

        I also have beef with the iPads for similar reasons
        1) Why are the icons stored in the same spacing as on an iPhone with WAY too much space in between
        2) The apps are either redundant to my iPhone or SUCK for anything more useful like taking notes or doing engineering.
        3) The cases are annoying and by and large suck. I really don't like the most common cases and Apple clearly thinks of cases and keyboards as an afterthought at best.

        I'd love to get something like an iPad but they simply haven't bothered to work on anything that is a viable use case for me. They just supersized my iPhone and didn't really bother to take advantage of the larger form factor in any serious way.

        • by jdavidb ( 449077 )
          For a little more than the price of two Apple pencil styluses, I can get two Amazon Fire tablets, which would be so much more useful for me and my family.
          • For a little more than the price of two Apple pencil styluses, I can get two Amazon Fire tablets, which would be so much more useful for me and my family.

            If that is your use case then no argument. I'm not so concerned with the price but rather the fact that you just can't frakin' do anything genuinely useful with an Apple Pencil. I'm an engineer, an accountant, and I coach a sports team. Every one of those jobs has a LOT of paperwork that I could easily see doing on an iPad with an Apple Pencil but Apple in their infinite wisdom cannot be bothered to write the software to allow me to do it. They are worried about the three people doing graphics design ra

      • by pnutjam ( 523990 )
        My kids school uses Ipads, so this is interesting to me. Although their icloud account was 25GB, which fills up from one backup. I was looking at using this [libimobiledevice.org] to back them up when they turn them in this year. We rent them from the school.

        My biggest complaint is that we have to lie about our kids ages. You can't create a child account without an existing apple product to manage from, there is no ability to manage from a website.
        The school 'could' create child accounts, but they won't participate in the progra
      • Once again, they ensure no one will use it.

        Unless the school requires it.

        Even 20 years ago when I was in college, it was mandatory that we buy Apple computers for the school offices. The school would not allow us to buy anything else. I hated being responsible for ordering new computers for the campus newspaper office, since everyone hated them, but school policy is still policy.

    • You didn't catch any of the recent articles on how Apple is bad at backend and scaling stuff?
    • The free iCloud offering for students has also been bumped up from 5GB to 200GB.

      How about you get with the times and give that to everyone, Apple?

      The upgrade is fairly cheap. [apple.com]

  • by Lucas123 ( 935744 ) on Tuesday March 27, 2018 @02:28PM (#56335529) Homepage
    "If you see a stylus, they blew it.” - Steve Jobs, 2010
    • by supernova87a ( 532540 ) <kepler1@@@hotmail...com> on Tuesday March 27, 2018 @02:46PM (#56335695)
      Yeah, I think he meant if the primary UI requires a stylus then it sucks. This, supposedly, is turning an iPad into a *more* useful drawing, editing tool.
    • "If you see a stylus, they blew it.” - Steve Jobs, 2010

      Yeah he said it. But the reality is that a stylus is fine PROVIDED it isn't used like a mouse. A stylus should be used for drawing only. And drawing letters for note taking falls into that category. Just drawing because that is all it is good for. If you couldn't do it with a real pencil then you shouldn't be able to do it with a stylus as a general proposition. The problem with them tends to be that application developers easily forget this and get tempted into using a stylus like a mouse (or worse a

    • "If you see a stylus, they blew it.” - Steve Jobs, 2010

      Jobs also didn't have any problem contradicting himself. If I remember correctly, he disparaged the whole idea of a tablet in the years leading up to the iPad's release. For years he was hypercritical of two-button mice, even though Mac OS supported right-click functions and eventually Apple released their own version of a two-button mouse. x86 was supposedly the antiquated, no-good cheap option until it wasn't.

      I think the opinions of Steve Jobs were always relative to the exact time he expressed them. His

  • by jfdavis668 ( 1414919 ) on Tuesday March 27, 2018 @02:30PM (#56335559)
    Comes with a built in sharpener.
  • Vendor lock-in (Score:4, Interesting)

    by fred6666 ( 4718031 ) on Tuesday March 27, 2018 @02:35PM (#56335579)

    Schools should not invest in an eco system with a single vendor for both hardware and software while there are more open alternatives. This is especially true for public schools, which shouldn't be allowed to enter such a high level of vendor lock-in.

    • Schools should not invest in an eco system with a single vendor for both hardware and software while there are more open alternatives.

      You mean like Microsoft + Intel? In principle I agree with you but good luck getting a practical setup without a substantial amount of vendor lock in.

      • I agree it's hard, but it doesn't mean they should pick the absolute worst. Apple is the top in vendor lock-in.
        Either Windows PCs or chromebooks are a lot less locked-in since you can always purchase hardware from another manufacturer while keeping the same OS. Any school manager deciding to buy Apple products should be fired.
        Ideally, schools should also favor the purchasing of applications which are cross platform. So an iOS only application should be banned.

        If you want to vendor lock-in yourself or your f

        • by inking ( 2869053 )
          That’s funny, I switched from Android to WP to iOS just. Before that I switched from Windows to Linux and back just fine too. Must be some really terrible lock-in you have there if it’s causing you that much trouble.
          • switching for a single user is much easier than for an organization. Also you may not have locked-in yourself too badly if you didn't purchase apps and tons of accessories. However you are now on iOS so let me know when you successfully switch back to something else.
            Hint: don't use any of the Apple services (mail/calendar/music/photos)

      • Schools should not invest in an eco system with a single vendor for both hardware and software while there are more open alternatives.

        You mean like Microsoft + Intel? In principle I agree with you but good luck getting a practical setup without a substantial amount of vendor lock in.

        It's possible, but it would require federal $$$ to make it happen.

  • Does this mean every teacher will need a school purchased $2,000 to $3,000 iMac computer with specialized software to interface to these new iPads? Will the schools also need additional school system purchased Apple specific centralized server hardware and software for all these iPads to do their job? There could be additional overhead I haven't thought of.
  • by atomicalgebra ( 4566883 ) on Tuesday March 27, 2018 @02:41PM (#56335637)
    Apple also announced ClassKit api in order to integrate educational software into schools.
  • ...there still being no update to their 2014 Mac Mini is not. *grumble*

  • Whatever happened to regular pencils and paper and having a computer lab for students? As a taxpayer do I really need outfit the marxists in training with every electronic gadget there is??

    Guess what, you can do math without an ipad using just a pencil, paper, and maybe a $15 calculator. For wordprocessing, that's what a computer lab is for.

    • I was very depressed when my 13 year old nephew didn't know what handwriting looked like. "What language is that?" "Fuck man, that IS English".
  • by e3m4n ( 947977 ) on Tuesday March 27, 2018 @03:29PM (#56336067)

    Unfortunately Apple is still way behind the ball on the granular parental restrictions that Android offers if they want to compete. The exact same parental nanny application, FamilyTime.io, on an Android, not only lets me set schedules for when my child can use their applications, but it will let me specify exactly WHICH apps they are allowed to use and which ones they are not during those schedules. On IOS my options include : Safari, Camera, Siri Dictation, iTunes Store, in-app purchases, and ---> ALL OTHER APPS. This means that if my child needs access to lets say the 'Remind' app, during school hours, I also have to give the child access to text messaging, skype, games, and another other stupid shit they happen to have just because the teachers heavily use 'Infinite Campus', and 'Remind' for academia. Whereas the _exact_same_ utility on Android lets me literally say yes/no to every installed app on the device. Many comunication with the developer indicate the fault lies DIRECTLY with APPLE.

  • has had full pencil support for decades. Maybe longer. Anyone know when they pencil was invented?
  • in the days of budget cuts and atrocious test scores; i'm really really glad apple is still able to get people to think their technology in the classroom is anything beyond a mixture of corporate welfare and advertising.

    The line of thought seems to be "STEM STEM STEM! if we get the kids using technology they'll be the next generation of tech gods!"

    But really, these are just tablets. And certainly don't represent much of an improvement over books, pencil, and paper. When it comes to you know, learning.

    Whic

  • by TimMD909 ( 260285 ) on Tuesday March 27, 2018 @04:06PM (#56336331) Homepage

    The world has changed. Apple is now trying to do what Microsoft did 20 years ago. Unfortunately for Apple, you can't get the next generation hooked on your goods if they're not good enough and not the right price. Add in issues getting affordable software into their damned walled garden, and I'm completely confused as to why Apple would even go down this road.

    Maybe all the C* levels doing Himalayan amounts of cocaine while their engineers routinely micro-dose on acid is the explanation...

    From what I'm seeing, the price is still 2x-3x too high for giving to kids. Kids break shit all the time. Unless the iPads are completely indestructible, $300 will quickly turn into $900 after the inevitable third time the kid drops it from a height of only 0.5 meters. A better price point is $100-$150 in which the Chromebooks dominate.

    And as others have said here, tablets aren't that useful for anything more than casual use (like reading an ebook, watching YouTube while taking a shit, and shit-posting on your favorite social media). If you want your kid to actually be doing research, writing up papers, and doing homework, tablets are not the device to use.

  • by Anonymous Coward

    This is supposed to be apples Chromebook-killer?
    What a half ass attempt.

  • So Apple almost owns the entire space for tablets costing 300USD or more. Amazon sells very very cheap tablets for 50-150USD. Within these tight brackets there exists very little room for Android tablets to exist and strive. If you look at what Samsung offers for the 200-300, it's only the ancient Tab A products.

  • Chromebooks are easy to repair, while ipads are not!

  • by Anonymous Coward

    It's been how long since the Apple Pencil was introduced and they are just now getting around to adding support for it into their first party office suite? Not when the Apple Pencil was first released, not with iOS 11 which added drawing support across a lot of apps... they wait until NOW to do it. It's like they were trying to drive people to get Office 365 subscriptions so they can get Word/Excel/PowerPoint for iOS.

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