Apple refreshes iPad lineup, with larger entry-level model

If you see a stylus they BLEW it – Steve Jobs. REMEMBER Apple?
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If you see a stylus they BLEW it – Steve Jobs. REMEMBER Apple? READ MORE

In brief: Today Apple launches updated versions of the iPad Air and iPad Mini, with both devices packing the powerful A12 Bionic processor.

And fans will get Apple Pencil support which allows them to scribble on the screen with this digital stylus.

However, the Apple Pencil support is limited to the Apple Pencil 1 which means it gets the old crappy charging solution and lacks a magnetic connection to the iPad. The Pencil also comes with a Lightning adapter, which has two Lightning ports, one which is plugged into by a Lightning cable, and the other which you use to plug in your Apple Pencil. And with Apple Pencil support, the new iPad mini is the flawless take-anywhere notepad for sketching and jotting down thoughts on the go.

Also like the Mini, the Air comes in two capacity sizes - 64GB or 256GB with prices starting at £479 for the Wi-Fi version, rising to £749 for the fully loaded cellular incarnation. Both new iPads feature improvements to speed, multi-tasking, display technology, Pencil support, and more.

The iPad mini and I have some history. The upgraded cameras with exceptional low-light performance and HD video recording are great for document scanning and connecting with friends and family on Group FaceTime calls, and with advanced sensors, help enable immersive AR experiences. However, four years following the iPad mini 4, Apple has finally released its successor.

It makes sense for the 10.5-inch iPad to be renamed the iPad Air.

The iPad Air is baffling to me.

So with the iPad Air, you're now getting nearly everything the impressive iPad Pro 10.5 offered for a lot less - and if you need the raw power as well as a top-end screen then the higher-end iPad Pro range still exists for you to sample. What's the difference between the iPad and iPad Air?

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The iPad Air had been missing from Apple's lineup since 2014, when the iPad Air 2 was released.

The new iPads come in Silver, Space Gray, and Gold.

Most damning, though, was how stale the iPad mini's specifications had become.

For a while, I thought the writing was on the wall for the iPad mini. You get dual-band 802.11ac Wi-Fi with MIMO, Bluetooth 5.0, Gigabit-class LTE, and Global Positioning System.

The 10.5-inch iPad Air starts at RRP $779 inc. The WiFi + Cellular models start at US$529 and US$629.

The new iPad Mini and iPad Air are available to pre-order today. Not because you might not want to buy the iPads, but because you might want to pick up a Logitech Crayon instead of an Apple Pencil.

What's more, most retailers now sell the 10.5-inch iPad Pro at a discounted rate. Polyurethane covers cost $39 and $49 respectively for the iPad Mini and iPad Air.

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