Apple shares news: Launches cheaper tablet with pencil support, aimed at schools

Apple shares closed lower Tuesday as the tech giant unveiled its latest iPad with additional, education friendly features and a lower price tag for schools.

Apple shares news: Launches cheaper tablet with pencil support, aimed at schools

Apple shares closed in the red Tuesday, on a late sell-off amid tech and driverless cars concerns. Meanwhile, the tech innovator launched an iPad with pencil support, with a $299 price tag for schools, aimed at the education industry.

The move is likely designed to make up some of the lost ground on Google and Microsoft in the US education market.

Apples shares ended the US trading session 2.56% lower at $168.34 amid tech-related gloom, which has replaced the previous market-wide trade fears. The stock is also in the red in after-hours activity.

Apple for educators

At its education event in Chicago Tuesday, Apple unveiled its latest updated 9.7-inch iPad with stylus pencil support. The pencil is available separately, but if you already own an Apple pencil from earlier, more expensive models that support it, that will work on this new model, too.

At the event, Apple speakers highlighted the many popular education apps available through the App store. It also promoted the new annotation abilities of its latest tablet, that would make it easy for teachers to mark up work on the device.

The new iPad will be priced at $329 for consumers and $299 for schools. The pen will be $89 for schools and $99 for the public.

“iPad is our vision for the future of computing and hundreds of millions of people around the world use it every day at work, in school and for play,” said Apple’s vice president of product marketing, Greg Joswiak.

“This new 9.7-inch iPad takes everything people love about our most popular iPad and makes it even better for inspiring creativity and learning,” he added.

Hopes to make gains in the schools’ market

While Google’s Chromebook has the largest market share across US schools – some 60% - there is still hope for Apple’s renewed vigour for the sector.

Indeed, some analysts point to the tech giant’s popularity overseas, such as in China and Europe, where the Chromebook hasn’t penetrated the education market as strongly.

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