Apple just announced the eighth-generation iPad and a completely redesigned iPad Air

The entry-level and mid-range tablets received some modest updates on
Written by Jason Cipriani, Contributing Writer

Apple just announced the entry-level iPad and the iPad Air are both getting hardware updates. The announcement was made at Apple's Sept. 15 Time Flies event, where the company also announced two new Apple Watch models. 

Also: Everything Apple announced at its Time Flies event

The 8th generation iPad will use Apple's A12 Bionic processor and keeps its support for Apple's Smart Keyboard accessory, as well as Apple Pencil support. The design of the eighth generation iPad hasn't changed; it still features a home button with Touch ID built into it and a 10.2-inch display. The updated iPad will be available to order starting Sept. 15 and will ship on Friday, the same day it's available in stores. Apple kept it priced at $329. 

See it now:

The revamped iPad Air includes a completely new design, including a USB-C port and a 10.9-inch display. It comes in five different colors. Apple will start taking orders next month, but it didn't give any more information. It will start at $599.

Screenshot by Jason Ciprian/ZDNet

The new design makes the iPad Air look more like the iPad Pro, Apple's high-end tablet, and leaves the standard iPad as the lone model that still uses the traditional iPad design. 

Also: Apple's event: Watch the Apple Watch Series 6 and iPad Air get unveiled here

Instead of a home button with Touch ID, and forgoing the addition of Face ID like the iPad Pro line uses, Apple included a fingerprint sensor in the sleep/wake button on the top of the housing. This is the first time we've seen Apple use this kind of tech, and can't help but wonder if we'll see the same approach used on future iPhone models, especially in a world where face masks and Face ID often don't get along. 

Inside the new iPad Air is Apple's A14 Bionic processor, making it the first device to launch with Apple's newest processor, ahead of the iPhone 12, which we expect to see announced next month.

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