Apple's 9.7-inch iPad for students: Price, release date, specs, and features

Apple's new 9.7-inch iPad for students includes Apple Pencil support, A10 Fusion chip, 8-megapixel camera, optional LTE, and more. It starts at $299 for schools.
Written by Jake Smith, Contributor
Apple is introducing a new 9.7-inch iPad expected to begin shipping next week. (CNET/CBS Interactive)

Apple is introducing an updated 9.7-inch iPad focused on schools, students, and teachers with Apple Pencil support and other education tools.

Apple held an event at a public high school in Chicago to unveil the new tablet, expected to take on Google's Chrome OS in a battle over the education market.

"The new 9.7 inch iPad takes everything people love about our most popular iPad and make it even better," said Greg Joswiak, an Apple marketing exec, at the event.

Here's a look at the changes coming to Apple's new iPad, and when you'll be able to buy it.

Apple event: See the new iPad (pictures)

iPad: Specs

Apple has added the Apple-designed A10 Fusion chip built on a 64-bit architecture to the new iPad. In a bid for more speed, Apple says the A10 Fusion chip offers 40-percent faster CPU speed and 50 percent faster graphics performance when compared to the previous 9.7-inch iPad. It has an embedded M10 coprocessor.

Other iPad specifications:

  • 9.7-inch Retina display (2048x1536 resolution)
  • 32GB and 128GB capacities
  • Apple Pencil support
  • Bluetooth keyboard support (no Smart Keyboard)
  • 8-megapixel rear-facing camera ƒ/2.4 aperture
  • 1.2-megapixel HD FaceTime camera
  • TouchID fingerprint scanner
  • 10 hours of battery life
  • Free 200GB iCloud storage for students
  • iOS 11 with education specific apps
Apple's new 9.7-inch iPad for education adds Pencil support. (Apple)

The new iPad includes a 300MBps LTE option so students and teachers can access apps and web when not connected to Wi-Fi.


  • Touch ID built into the iPad's home button
  • Three-axis gyro
  • Accelerometer
  • Barometer
  • Ambient light sensor
CNET/CBS Interactive

In marketing speak, Apple is comparing its new iPad's power to a computer:

If the computer were invented today, what would it look like? It would be powerful enough for any task. So mobile you could take it everywhere. And so intuitive you could use it any way you wanted -- with touch, a keyboard, or even a pencil. In other words, it wouldn't really be a "computer." It would be the new iPad

The new 9.7-inch iPad weighs roughly one pound and uses Lightning connection for charging and data transfer. On Apple's site, you can read all the technical specifications for the new iPad.

iPad: Release date

Apple said at its event the new 9.7-inch iPad will start shipping next week. You can check out the new iPad on Apple's retail store.

iPad: Price

Apple is calling its new iPad "our most affordable iPad." During its event, Apple said the iPad for students costs $299 for schools and $329 for consumers.

iPad 9.7-inch retail pricing:

  • 32GB Wi-Fi - $329
  • 128GB Wi-Fi - $429
  • 32GB Wi-Fi + Cellular - $459
  • 128GB Wi-Fi + Cellular - $559

The new iPad comes in silver, space gray, and a new gold finish.

Apple's new 9.7-inch iPad supports the Apple Pencil stylus. It costs an additional $99.

Logitech also makes a Crayon for $49, highlighted at the Apple event, as well as a rugged case.

If you're not interested in the new 9.7-inch iPad, Apple also offers the iPad Pro in two sizes and an iPad mini.

iPad: Features

Apple is touting a heavy education focus with its new iPad. It includes support for Apple's ARKit and education apps that include a School Manager program.

The new iPad also supports annotations with the Apple Pencil through iWork apps like Pages and Keynote.

Apple event: First pictures of the iPad field trip

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