In what is somewhat of a break in traditions, Apple is hosting an event tomorrow in Chicago. It isn’t the usual hardware or developer-centric event, and instead the focus tomorrow will be on education. Apple revealed the event’s focus will be on “creative new ideas for teachers and students”.
The event kicks off at 10:00AM CT (8:30PM IST) tomorrow, and weirdly enough, Apple won’t have a live stream. The company is instead promising live news announcements. The company is also planning a follow-up event for teachers only at an Apple Store in Chicago. With just over 24 hours for the event to kick off, here’s a look at everything that Apple is expected to announce.
The event’s focus is on education, and what better time to announce new inexpensive iPads aimed at students? As per a recent Bloomberg report, Apple is indeed working on a low-cost iPad that will soon be launched sans the premium features seen on the iPad Pro. The company could however retain the smart connector that will let students connect an external keyboard.
While details are scarce, Apple would very well unveil a more contemporary version of the iPad Mini, which was last updated back in 2015. As per reports, this new low-cost iPad could be priced around the $259 (approximately Rs 16,800) mark.
Sticking with the iPads, there are reports that the event could see the launch of a new Apple Pencil. The current Apple Pencil only works with the iPad Pro, and at Rs 8,600, is not very affordable either. Apple could launch a more affordable variant of the Pencil that will be compatible with the rumored low-cost iPad.
Again while details are scarce, what is stoking the proverbial fire is the media invite for the March 27 event sent by Apple. Instead of the colorful invites the company usually sends, this invite is grey and the logo looks like something drawn using an Apple Pencil.
With classrooms in the US flooding with low-cost Chromebooks, we won’t be surprised if Apple launches an affordable MacBook for students. Though it will no doubt be way more expensive than a Chromebook, the launch of a new MacBook does fall in line with recent rumors.
There have been multiple reports about Apple working on an updated MacBook Air, which hasn’t really seen much changes in recent years. While it did get a spec bump last year, the design and especially the display, have remained unchanged.
According to rumors, Apple could launch a more affordable MacBook Air with the same Retina display as the existing 13.3-inch MacBook Pro. The laptop is also likely to carry a sub-$1,000 (approximately Rs 64,900) price tag. That being said, there are also reports claiming that this cheap MacBook won’t be ready in time for the launch event tomorrow.
Apart from hardware, Apple is no doubt expected to announce some education-specific software updates. One such announcement is expected to be ClassKit, which was recently spotted in the framework of one of the iOS 11.3 betas. As the name suggests, ClassKit will help iOS developers build educational apps that can be used in schools.
One example of such an is called ‘Classwork’, which will let teachers give quizzes to their students. The app can be used by students to send in their answers, and there could also be a mode that will prevent kids from jumping into Safari and Googling for quiz answers.
One more thing
If there is one thing that we have come to expect from Apple during its events, it is a surprise announcement at the end. At tomorrow’s event too there could be some surprise announcement by the Cupertino-based company. Could it be the much-rumored new AirPods or the iPhone SE 2? Could also see the long-awaited launch of the AirPower mat?
At the moment all we can do is wait. Apple’s event tomorrow kicks off at 8:30PM IST, and we will bring you all the announcements. So stay tuned.