Apple Special Event, March 2018
The Apple special event, with it's tagline of "Let's go on a field trip", was held on the 27th of March at a high school in Chicago. Given the tagline and the location, it had the expected focus on education. Apple showcased new products, software and initiatives designed to "Ignite the creativity in every student", with a special focus on a revised 9.7-inch iPad.
An “Education” iPad
The key product from the event was a new "6th-Gen" iPad with support for the Apple Pencil, which previously only worked with the more expensive iPad Pro. The other technical improvement over the previous 9.7-inch iPad, is a welcome boost to the faster A10 Fusion processor.
With the heavy-focus on creativity for students at the event being reinforced by the support for Apple Pencil on the latest 9.7-inch iPad, it was interesting to see the Logitech Crayon announced. It's a partnership which provides education customers with a cheaper, although slightly less feature rich, alternative to the Apple Pencil. The Crayon shares many of the basic features of Apple’s Pencil such as latency, tilt and palm rejection, but it lacks pressure sensitivity.
The second product announced from this partnership is a rugged keyboard case for the revised iPad. Designed with input from schools, teachers and students, it features a detachable keyboard with pry-resistant keys and is also spill resistant. It draws its power from the iPad itself and thus avoids awkward bluetooth pairing and charging concerns. That, along with the built-in kick stand, should make it a great choice for those schools looking to equip students with a dependable, protective, keyboard case. It even features a holder that is perfect for the Apple Pencil or Logitech Crayon.
On the software side, Apple have released Schoolwork. The app allows teachers to manage their classroom digitally and is designed to build on the success of the Apple Classroom app, helping educators "get the most out of integrating Apple technology into schools".
With Schoolwork, teachers can hand out activities, homework and projects, all with the tap of a finger. They will have the option to attach PDF’s, links and more, to aid in productivity. To help accommodate this, Apple will be upgrading student iCloud accounts to 200GB as standard. The release of Schoolwork is planned for June.
A new version of iWork was also revealed at the event, incorporating support for the Apple Pencil. Another key feature added was the Digital Book Creation tool, this lets teachers and students build books by adding images, handwritten notes and illustrations to pre-made templates. Teachers will also be able to mark, edit and annotate documents on Pages with Apple Pencil, similar to how they may currently mark worksheets.
Everyone Can Create
All of this leads to a brand new initiative called “Everyone Can Create” which is pitching the new iPad as the “ultimate creative classroom tool for students to learn and express themselves”. The focus being on four areas, music, video, photography and drawing, and will push students towards making things digitally at a young age with tools such as GarageBand, iMovie and Clips. Everyone Can Create is a available to preview now, with the full roll-out coming this summer.
Want to know more about the new iPad or accessories? Contact our education team, and we will be more than happy to answer any questions you might have, by phone, email or with a personal visit.
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