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Apple updates iPad, iPad Mini: specs, prices and more

During a Tuesday Apple event, the company announced its new iPad and new iPad Mini, which now supports a USB-C port and functions alongside Wi-Fi 6 and 5G.
Apple unveiled a new ninth-generation iPad and new iPad mini.
Apple unveiled a new ninth-generation iPad and new iPad mini.Apple

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Apple launched updates for its iPad line on Tuesday at its September 2021 Apple Event, touching up its base level iPad and its iPad Mini. Accompanied by the upcoming new iPadOS, the new tablets are available for pre-order now and start shipping Friday, Sept. 24. The updates come alongside a slew of launches from Apple the same day for the iPhone 13, iPhone 13 Pro, Apple Watch 7, and new Apple Fitness+ features.

Apple’s announcement comes just one day after the company advised all users to update their devices upon discovering a flaw that would allow Israeli spyware company NSO Group to control virtually any computer, watch or iPhone. On Sept. 10, a U.S. judge also ruled against the company in Epic Games’ antitrust lawsuit and stated that Apple cannot prohibit developers from directing customers to payment methods outside of Apple’s in-app purchase system.

Apple’s new iPad (pre-order, ships Sept. 24)

Equipping an A13 bionic chip, the CPU in Apple’s new iPad is 20 percent faster than its predecessor. Improved camera lenses aim to engage Apple users focused on both social and remote work and play capabilities. The iPad’s rear camera got an improved auto-focus and low-light operations. The front camera is now a 12MP Ultra-Wide lens boasting 122 degrees of view — and can now handle iPad Pro’s Center Stage, which automatically detects people in live feeds and adjusts the frame of the video around them. The tablet’s True Tone feature will automatically adjust its color temperature based on where you’re using it.

The new iPad starts at $329 for the 64GB model in either Space Gray or Silver — also available is the 256GB model starting at $479. For $150 extra, either model can come with cellular data capabilities.

Apple’s new iPad Mini (pre-order, ships Sept. 24)

The redesign of the new iPad Mini brought with it a significant uptick in performance and some new color options — but perhaps most surprising was its use of a USB-C port now, making it more accessible charging-wise. The screen size is up to 8.3 inches large now, up from 7.9 inches, and it now sports the brand’s high resolution Liquid Retina display — like the iPad Air, it now includes TouchID in its top button. Compared to its predecessor, the iPad Mini now boasts a 40-percent boost in CPU performance and a 80-percent hike in its GPU performance. The new model supports Wi-Fi 6 and 5G networks, too.

The 2nd Gen Apple Pencil now works with the iPad Mini, which attaches to and charges it. It also brought with it four new Smartfolio covers.

The new iPad Mini starts at $499 for the 64GB model in either Purple, Pink, Starlight and Space Grey — also available is the 256GB model starting at $649. For $150 extra, either model can come with cellular data capabilities.

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