Apple’s annual spring event is usually held in California. However, this time the company decided to break away from tradition by hosting it in a high school in Chicago. The message was clear. Apple will start to focus its products toward education, a market that has been dominated by its competitors Microsoft and Google. Apple also revealed its newest iPad during the event and while the keynote lasted only one hour, there were a lot of things to take away from it.
The following are some of the biggest announcements from the event:
An Education-Specific iPad
Apple revealed its new affordable iPad that comes with stylus support. The device will be cheaper for students. Schools will pay $299 for it while everybody else will have to pay $329. The biggest upgrade though for the new iPad is its new ability to work with the Apple Pencil. The pencil costs $99 but students and teachers will be able to get it for $89. Previously, the Apple Pencil was supported only by the iPad Pro. Including stylus support for this new iPad is a good move by Apple. Other important features include Touch ID, an 8MP rear camera, HD FaceTime camera and the A10 Fusion chip.
The New Logitech Crayon Stylus
The Apple Pencil supported by the new iPad still costs $99 and even though students will pay $10 less, other consumers haven’t received a price drop yet. In order to make up for this, Apple announced that it will be offering a cheaper third-party stylus called the Logitech Crayon. The stylus will work with the new iPad and at only $49, it’s indeed a bargain.
There will be a new update for iWork. The new version is designed to incorporate support for the Apple Pencil. Pages will also include a new Digital Book Creation tool. The tool will allow teachers to work with students in building books by adding pictures, illustrations, and handwritten notes. The iWork update will make it possible for Numbers to be used in creating lab reports. Kid-friendly filters have been introduced to Clips and teachers can now mark documents on Pages with the Apple Pencil.
Classroom Management Apps
The new iPad comes with a new app called Schoolwork which is designed for teachers and it helps them to digitally manage a classroom. Teachers will now be able to give students digital assignments through the app. They can attach documents like PDFs to the assigned tasks and mark due dates for various projects.
Everyone Can Create
All the new features that were announced during the annual spring event are part of a new Apple initiative called “Everyone Can Create.” The company is promoting the iPad as the ideal classroom tool which lets teachers and students express themselves using the technology. Apple has released tools like GarageBand and Clips that allow students to create things digitally. They can create audio reports and use new AR apps on the device to illustrate math and science concepts.