In Brief

Apple takes on Google with school-friendly iPad

Budget tablet supports Apple Pencil and new Schoolwork app for teachers and pupils

Apple has announced a new entry-level iPad with special features designed for schools, in a bid to overtake Google in the education market. 

The new iPad features a 9.7in touchscreen and is the first non-Pro version of the tablet to be compatible with Apple’s Pencil stylus, which allows users to create “on-screen drawings and annotations”, the Financial Times says. 

The device was unveiled at a keynote meeting in Chicago yesterday, along with updated versions of Apple’s iWork “productivity” software. 

The budget iPad comes with 200GB of free iCloud space, so users can upload their files and videos into cloud storage, while a new Schoolwork app allows teachers to “assign students handouts and track their work”, the newspaper reports. 

Apple’s new entry-level iPad goes on sale today and costs £319, although the company will offer a discount on the tablet and Pencil for schools, according to the London Evening Standard.  

While the iPad is one of Apple’s best-selling products, the Cupertino-based firm has lagged behind other tech giants in building a presence in schools. 

According to Alphr, Google’s Chromebook laptops and tablets account for “around 60% of the education market”, while Apple products make up just 19%. 

Although the new iPad is Apple’s cheapest yet, Wired points out that Google Chromebooks are still far less pricey, at around $200 (£140), and come with a keyboard - which is an optional extra on iPads. 

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