Apple quietly introduces new 9.7-inch iPad

Apple iPad 2017,WWDC 2017,wwdc

In what could be a sign of its shifting priorities, Apple has stealthily announced an updated version of its 9.7-inch iPad.

The company quietly revealed the new tablet on its website this week, being available in selected markets from Friday 24 March. Expect to pay US$329 for the 32GB WiFi-only model and US$459 for the 32GB WiFi and cellular variant. Want the 128GB model? It’ll set you back US$429 for the WiFi-only model and US$559 for the cellular version.

As for upgrades, the new iPad packs 2016’s A9 processor, originally found in the iPhone 6s and the iPhone SE. So those expecting the screaming A10 chip, used in the iPhone 7, will be disappointed. But the A9 is still a very capable bit of silicon, so expect your games and apps to run at a brisk pace.

Otherwise, Apple is touting a brighter 9.7-inch 2048×1536 display, up to ten hours of battery life, Touch ID fingerprint scanning, an 8MP f/2.4 main camera and a low-resolution 1.2MP selfie shooter.

The new iPad packs an older A9 processor, being a step below the iPad Pro range

Don’t hold your breath for a South African release yet as the new tablet is launching “in the US and more than 20 countries and regions, including Australia, Canada, China, France, Germany, Hong Kong, Italy, Japan, Mexico, Netherlands, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland and the UK”.

What about other locales?

“Denmark, India, Mexico, Norway, Russia, Turkey and other countries and regions will follow in April. Brazil, Taiwan and other countries and regions will follow in May.”

The new iPad reveal comes almost two months after Apple announced record quarterly revenue. However, tablet sales saw a year-on-year decline from 16 million units sold to 13 million units, being the latest decline in iPad sales for Apple.




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