Education remains a very important part of Apple's business, so next week the company will unveil a new iPad that's much more affordable for students and teachers. The company, according to Bloomberg, has developed a low-cost iPad with special classroom-focused software. With the iPad line seeing an increase in sales due to new models being introduced, there could be an opportunity to also push the cheaper tablet outside of the classroom.
Companies like Google and Microsoft have been on the rise in recent years as their hardware is less expensive and their software is easier to manage. Throughout the United States, school districts have switched to Chrome OS desktops and laptops more than anything else.
Apple doesn't normally roll out affordable products, but it risks losing any remaining grip if it doesn't offer better pricing. The launch of the low-cost iPad will happen at Lane Technical College Prep High School, a public institution in Chicago celebrating its 100th anniversary in 2018. The company wants to prove its committed to serving students and teachers in every way.
The tablet won't be alone at the event set for March 27. Apple will also showcase education software that school districts and their staff can leverage to improve the learning experience.
While it's unlikely to be unveiled alongside the low-cost iPad, the report does say a new entry-level MacBook is also in the works. The MacBook, which should replace the MacBook Air sometime this year, will come in at under $1,000 and try to reclaim the attention of college students.
What we probably won't see is a plan to put MacBooks and iPads in every classroom nationwide. Apple tried that before and success was limited. It seems to be more interested in pushing initiatives that are well-suited for Apple's products than actually forcing school districts to make big, expensive purchases. Apple could introduce software that helps students learn to code, an idea that every major tech company should be investing in.
Since the company doesn't want to ink deals that lock school districts into massive expenditures, Apple will announce new hardware that's inexpensive and doesn't need to be bought in bulk. Then a school district can easily choose how many units are necessary and move classrooms forward in the digital age.