Exactly one year after it launched the 9.7-inch iPad Pro, Apple has refreshed its tablet lineup with a new iPad in that exact size.
This isn’t the Pro or the Air 3, though; it’s just called iPad, and it starts at a very reasonable $329.
The new model appears to be very similar, specs-wise, to the iPad Air 2. Apple claims its 2,048×1,536 pixel screen is brighter than ever, and its chip has been upgraded to Apple’s A9.
The cameras are the same: 8 megapixels on the back, 1.2 megapixels on the front. A Touch ID-enabled home button is there, of course, but the device is not Apple Pencil-ready like the iPad Pro. The battery lasts the same on all iPads, and the new one is not an exception, with a promised 10 hours of battery life.
But the big deal here is the price, as the new iPad starts at just $329, a full $170 less than the iPad Air 2 at launch. Since it’s basically the same device, the price appears to be a deal.
So what happened to the iPad Air 2? Well, it’s gone. Apple’s lineup of iPads now included the iPad Pro (in two sizes), the iPad and the iPad mini 4 (which, interestingly enough, is now more expensive than the iPad, as it starts at $399.
The new 9.7-inch iPad is available in silver, gold and space gray starting at $329 for the 32GB, Wi-Fi model, while the 32GB Wi-Fi + Cellular model starts at $459. If you want the 128GB model — and you probably do, given that iPad apps tend to take quite a bit of storage space — you’ll have to dish out $429 for the Wi-Fi model, and $459 for the Wi-Fi + Cellular variant.
The new iPad will be available for order starting March 24. The device will initially be available in more than 20 countries and regions, including Australia, Canada, China, France, Germany, Hong Kong, Italy, Japan, Netherlands, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland and the UK. Apple says that Denmark, India, Mexico, Norway, Russia, Turkey, among others, will follow in April, followed by a May launch in Brazil, Taiwan and other countries and regions.