Apple surprised technology journalists around the world today after announcing two new iPad refreshes, despite being less than a week away from its next Keynote Speech.
The Cupertino firm took down the Apple Store in the early hours of this morning, and just updated it with brand new iPad models that were rumored to be shown off at Apple’s March 25 presentation, where the firm will premiere a new streaming service.
Speaking of the new product launches, Phil Schiller, Apple’s senior vice president of Worldwide Marketing, said that “iPad continues to provide magical new experiences for a growing range of uses where it is the absolute best device, from playing games in augmented reality to note-taking and drawing with Apple Pencil, from streaming HD movies and editing 4K films to learning to develop apps with Swift Playgrounds.”
“Today the iPad family takes two big leaps forward with an all-new 10.5-inch iPad Air that brings high-end size, features and performance at a breakthrough price, and a major upgrade to the 7.9-inch iPad mini, which also brings Apple Pencil, Retina display and the A12 Bionic chip to the many customers that love its compact size.”
New 10.5-inch iPad Air
The all-new iPad Air features a stunning 10.5-inch display, an A12 Bionic chip, and Apple Pencil support. Available in 64GB and 256GB storage capacities, prices start at $499 for Wi-Fi models and $629 for Cellular models. The new iPad Air serves as a low-cost replacement for the 10.5-inch iPad Pro, which was discontinued by Apple today.
A new iPad mini
Apple also announced a major refresh to its iPad mini product, now featuring an upgraded A12 Bionic processor, Apple Pencil support, and an advanced Retina display panel. The new model retains its $399 price tag.
Available in Apple’s three iconic colors – Silver, Space Gray, and Gold – the iPad mini starts from $399 in 4GB capacity, rising to $529 if you want to use the iPad mini with cellular data. iPad mini users can purchase the Apple Pencil for $99, too, with the mini supporting the first generation pencil, rather than the latest pencil for the iPad Pro.
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