ipad air
ipad air

Even though Apple’s announcement today was relatively quiet, it certainly is causing quite the splash. Apple announced new versions of the iPad Air and iPad mini, which is their first refresh on these particular products in several years. What’s interesting about this is that Apple normally goes big when it comes to the arrival of their new hardware, but this year, they want to focus next week’s event around their rumored streaming service. Is that a good idea? I mean, I think Apple still needs to focus a lot of attention on their hardware and not care so much about the services. That said, the services are what make Apple most of its money, so I can kind of understand where they’re coming from.

iPad Air

The all-new iPad Air comes in an ultra-thin 10.5-inch design, offering consumers the latest innovations including support for the Apple Pencil. With the A12 Bionic chip with Apple’s Neural Engine, the new iPad Air delivers a 70 percent boost in performance and twice the graphics capability, and the advanced Retina display with True Tone technology is nearly 20 percent larger with over half a million more pixels

iPad Mini

Also introduced during this announcement was a new 7.9-inch iPad Mini. This is a major upgrade for iPad Mini fans who love the compact, ultra-portable design packed with the latest Apple technology. With the A12 Bionic chip, the new iPad mini is a powerful multi-tasking machine, delivering three times the performance and nine times faster graphics. The advanced Retina display with True Tone technology and wide colour support is 25 percent brighter and has the highest pixel density of any iPad, which delivers an incredible visual experience. The iPad Mini also comes with Apple Pencil support, which makes it kind of incredible as you can really take it anywhere. So feel free to use it for sketching or jotting down your thoughts on the go.

“iPad continues to provide magical new experiences for a growing range of uses where it is the absolute best device, from playing games in augmented reality to note-taking and drawing with Apple Pencil, from streaming HD movies and editing 4K films to learning to develop apps with Swift Playgrounds. Today the iPad family takes two big leaps forward with an all-new 10.5-inch iPad Air that brings high-end size, features and performance at a breakthrough price, and a major upgrade to the 7.9-inch iPad mini, which also brings Apple Pencil, Retina display and the A12 Bionic chip to the many customers that love its compact size.”

Phil Schiller, Apple’s Senior Vice President of Worldwide Marketing

You’re probably wondering – what will these new devices cost? Let’s just say, it’s not pretty. If you’re looking for the 64 GB version, of the iPad Air, you will need to shell out $499. If you want to upgrade to the larger 256 GB version, then you’re looking at $649. The iPad Mini, however, will set you back $399 for the 64 GB version, and $549 for the 256 GB version. Both iPad’s come in Silver, Space Gray and Gold. I’m still a little surprised that Apple announced these new devices today, but given what they’re likely to talk about next week, it makes a lot of sense.