Apple upgrades its 9.7″ iPad and slices price to $329

Apple quietly updated its entry-level 9.7" iPad this morning. The new iPad—called, simply, iPad—replaces the Air 2 at the base of the full-size iPad lineup. The new slate offers the same A9 SoC found in the iPhone 6S, a 2048×1536 Retina display, a claimed 10 hours of battery life, and 32GB of storage for $329. That's a significant slice off the Air 2's $399 base price. 128GB models start at $429.

The new iPad also offers an 8MP rear camera with an f/2.4 lens, capable of 1920×1080 video recording at 30 FPS or 120-FPS slow-motion. A 1.2MP selfie shooter resides on the front of the device, and it can perform HDR capture and 720p video recording. Apple will sell the new iPad with 802.11ac wireless connectivity only or with an LTE radio inside for on-the-go connectivity. LTE models will start at $459. All iPads will be available in silver, gold, or space gray.

Comments closed
    • derFunkenstein
    • 3 years ago

    According to the [url=http://www.apple.com/ipad-9.7/specs/<]tech specs page[/url<], this sumbitch still has a headphone jack. WTF, Apple???!!111

      • tipoo
      • 3 years ago

      That’s why it was a silent launch. No courage.

    • CuttinHobo
    • 3 years ago

    “Which iPad do you have there?”
    “iPad.”
    “Yeah I know, but [i<]which[/i<] iPad?" "iPad." "......." Such an imaginative naming scheme. I guess those AMD PR guys had to go somewhere. 🙂

      • tipoo
      • 3 years ago

      Same issue I had with the Watch, though the iPad makes a bit more sense.

      “Do you have the edition, the Sport, or the…____?
      “The _____”

      “Do you have the edition, the Sport, or the…____?
      “The Edition”
      “Yeah, what edition?”

    • --k
    • 3 years ago

    As a person who’s bought Apple stuff for the last few years, the iPhone 6S will be my last Apple device that I buy for a while. Not seeing much technical innovation, but clearly see marketers run amok.

      • trackerben
      • 3 years ago

      Not to mention more (mostly trivial) software bugs. But a big few stay unresolved for too long.

      • tipoo
      • 3 years ago

      I’m biding some time as well with a home built desktop + a chromebook I can remote into it with. Sold my 15″ rMBP after two years of use, and after both I still have cash in my pocket!

      One good thing about them, resale value, but yeah, the 2016 sounded like it wasn’t what they actually wanted to release, with news of a delayed terraced battery like the 12.

    • ptsant
    • 3 years ago

    Cheaper, more storage, should be relatively fast and the camera looks good. Where is the catch? Is Apple going crazy?

      • mad_one
      • 3 years ago

      They saved on the display (no antireflective coating and not fully laminated, apparently) and it’s a bit heavier and thicker than the Air 2. So a faster chip, but otherwise a bit simpler in construction, but cheaper. Certainly great value, but not truly an upgrade.

      Amount of memory isn’t known yet, but probably 2GB, so it may run into problems in a few years.

        • blastdoor
        • 3 years ago

        Given all the criticism Apple receives around here for making devices that are too thin and light, I’m guessing they could develop some TR-specific advertising touting the greater heft of the new iPad.

          • NoOne ButMe
          • 3 years ago

          The issue is more with phones than tablets Imo

          • tipoo
          • 3 years ago

          The wish was to use old thicknesses to use larger batteries, not to get thicker by going back to pre-laminated displays with the same battery size 😉

    • blastdoor
    • 3 years ago

    Seems reasonable all around. Good entry point for a 9.7″ iPad; A9 is plenty fast; and the naming convention had become unwieldy. Presumably going forward there will be iPad and iPad Pro, just like there’s MacBook and MacBook Pro.

    Having said that….

    this is an island of reasonableness in an ocean of absurdity. The desktop Mac lineup is embarrassingly out of date. The iPad Pro would be considered embarrassingly out of date, but next to the blinding embarrassment of Mac, it’s hard to perceive the embarrassment of the iPad Pro… but trust me, it’s there.

      • the
      • 3 years ago

      The iPad Pro is due for an update but it has only been 18 months. If it gets closer to 2 full years then yeah they should be embarrassed about the lack of updates.

      The real embarrassment which Apple should be ashamed of is the Mac Pro with over three full years (3.5 since its announcement) since the last update. This is with a non-upgradeable ‘Pro’ box (well you can add RAM).

        • blastdoor
        • 3 years ago

        Yeah, all other embarrassments seem like accomplishments compared to the Mac Pro.

        The Mac Pro reminds me of that Seinfeld episode when Kramer kept driving the car long after the gas gauge read “empty”, just for the thrill of seeing how far he could push it. It’s like Apple is looking at the “days since update” meter over at macrumors and trying to push it just a little bit further.

          • derFunkenstein
          • 3 years ago

          I think they’re dreaming up silly ideas to make it better without giving it modern components. A fingerprint reader on the back of the device, for instance.

        • tipoo
        • 3 years ago

        You could actually upgrade the CPUs to the highest core count parts aftermarket (plus the SSD), but the real question is, I’m paying workstation prices for support and stability, why should I ****ing have to?! lol. But not really ‘lol’.

          • the
          • 3 years ago

          You could but the problem is that the highest core count option was already available as an option the first day Apple started shipping them. So there are users where a socketd CPU is worthless as they have the fastest chip that would work in it.

          SSD is removable but uses a proprietary connector. Only company that makes upgrades for it is OWC and those aren’t that impressive (PCIe RAID controller to several SF2281 SSDs) to exceed the capacity Apple offers by default. The OWC options without a RAID controller mimic the options Apple has on their website for the system. Ideally I’d want something like a 960 EVO/Pro option but Apple prevented their usage.

      • tipoo
      • 3 years ago

      Even Appleyperson John Grubber is throwing his hands up at the state of the Mac Pro. If you’re making money from GPGPU speed, it’s near impossible to justify it in 2017 when a single GPU at a fraction the cost (even integrated into the system) is far faster.

      [url<]http://daringfireball.net/linked/2017/02/22/video-mac-pros-gpus[/url<]

    • tipoo
    • 3 years ago

    It doesn’t have the fully laminated display and antireflective coating that iPad Air 2 and iPad mini 4 have. Ehh.
    The panel gap I could live with but the AR coating is one of the bigger improvements.

    [url<]http://www.apple.com/ipad/compare/[/url<]

      • derFunkenstein
      • 3 years ago

      Well they’ve gotta find something to charge around 80% extra for, I guess.

    • southrncomfortjm
    • 3 years ago

    It really just looks like they aren’t trying on the tablet side anymore. They didn’t even try to do something “Apple-ish” with the new name, or trumpet how “innovative” or “brave” some random feature is. I’m disappointed.

      • End User
      • 3 years ago

      There are indications that there will be an iPad Pro event soon. My guess is that Apple got the boring stuff out of the way with this announcement so that all eyes will be focused on the 2018 iPad Pro.

        • southrncomfortjm
        • 3 years ago

        Good, it’s been a while since I’ve seen a solid Apple innovation frenzy presentation.

          • End User
          • 3 years ago

          “Innovation” and “frenzy” are not words I would choose. I’d go for evolution and enthusiasm.

            • southrncomfortjm
            • 3 years ago

            It’s Apple, they just can’t resist.

      • drkskwlkr
      • 3 years ago

      Wait, you mean to say they didn’t even remove the earphones jack?! Pussies…

        • Pwnstar
        • 3 years ago

        No courage at all!

    • DPete27
    • 3 years ago

    [quote<]The new slate offers the same A9 SoC found in the iPhone 6S[/quote<] Bummer.

      • tipoo
      • 3 years ago

      Gotta make the Pro look more Pro somehow.

      • willmore
      • 3 years ago

      Yeah, isn’t that interseting. The last several generation of iPad chipsets were superset versions of the same generation iPhone. Generally they had beefed up graphics and better clocks. Sometimes they had more cores, but that isn’t a constant.

      Is this Apple saying that graphics are now good enough? With that many pixels, that kind of conclusion would seem unlikely to be true.

        • cygnus1
        • 3 years ago

        Granted this is pretty far removed from when the 6S came out, but it’s similar to what they did with iPad Mini 2. It had the same SOC (A7) as the iPhone 5S. Also, the resolution of the new iPad is still the same as that iPad Mini 2. SO, yeah, I figure the graphics are good enough in the A9 to run that resolution.

        • tipoo
        • 3 years ago

        The first iPad Air had the plain jane A7 didn’t it? But yeah, the X series was a substantial GPU boost and usually with a wider memory bit width to move that kind of resolutions graphics.

      • Jeff Kampman
      • 3 years ago

      The A9 still has plenty of legs, and it’s a better SoC than what you’ll find in the $399 iPad mini 4.

        • tipoo
        • 3 years ago

        While true, the A9X is of course…Leggier.

        + Mini starts at a higher price because it starts at 128GB, 4x what this does.

        • Kurotetsu
        • 3 years ago

        It also outperforms the A8X found in the iPad Air 2, which this new iPad is meant to replace.

    • tipoo
    • 3 years ago

    Sounds like the refurbed Air 2 is still the iPad deal of choice then. Not really a big jump over it, and thicker and heavier.

    Also: red iPhone. Imagine the blogosphere meltdown if the store went down and the Mac pro was only updated with a matte red coat 😛

    • derFunkenstein
    • 3 years ago

    Tablets are dead! Long live tablets!

    • hasseb64
    • 3 years ago

    Cheap!! Now, stop buying new phones and we will soon see a price cut there too!

      • derFunkenstein
      • 3 years ago

      No, no. The 10th anniversary iPhone will be $1000 with cubic zirconia-encrusted bezels

        • deruberhanyok
        • 3 years ago

        Actually it will be a pile of cubic zirconia dust. When exposed to light it will form a thin sheet of glass with an embedded circuit that, while underpowered, runs entirely on solar power and ambient EM radiation and is capable of making calls and running iMessage.

        It’ll be brave because there’s no app store for it and the dust might kill you if inhaled. But as long as you don’t sneeze you’ll be fine.

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