Apple is targeting education with a new version of the iPad, as well as a new tools and apps specifically created for use in the classroom.
At a press conference yesterday, Apple revealed a 9.7-inch iPad that will retail for $329 and work with the Apple Pencil - which was previously only available for the iPad Pro. The new iPad will be sold at a lower rate to schools: $299 for the iPad, and $89 for the Apple Pencil, which has a standard price of $99.
"This new 9.7-inch iPad takes everything people love about our most popular iPad and makes it even better for inspiring creativity and learning," said Greg Joswiak, Apple's vice president of Product Marketing, in a statement.
"Our most popular and affordable iPad now includes support for Apple Pencil, bringing the advanced capabilities of one of our most creative tools to even more users."
The new iPad has a 40 per cent faster CPU and 50 per cent faster graphics performance than the previous 9.7-inch iPad, and Apple emphasised the potential for, "immersive AR experiences."
In addition to the hardware, Apple also revealed Schoolwork, an app designed for teachers using Apple hardware in the classroom. Schoolwork can be used in conjunction with Everyone Can Create, a "free curriculum" that allows teachers to create multimedia lesson plans for students with iPads and Apple Pencils.
Apple launched a similar initiative for computer science, Everyone Can Code, at the start of this year.
"Creativity sparks a deeper level of engagement in students, and we're excited to help teachers bring out that creativity in the classroom," said Philip Schiller, Apple's senior vice president of Worldwide Marketing, in a statement.
"When you combine the power of iPad, the creativity of Apple Pencil, over a million iPad apps in the App Store, the rich curriculum in Everyone Can Code and Everyone Can Create... we believe we can amplify learning and creativity in a way that only Apple can."
According to Techcrunch, Apple's Greg Joswiak told the press conference that the App Store already had 200,000 apps that could be used in education.