The most popular iPad models received a refresh today during the September Apple Event. The base model iPad has been the best-selling tablet from Apple for years thanks to its versatility and low price. The new 8th generation model made its debut today bringing an upgraded processor, keyboard compatibility, and integration with the Apple Pencil. It retains its 10.2-inch screen size and $329 price tag.
Apple also took the opportunity to freshen up the iPad Air with the introduction of iPad Air 4. It packs a bigger screen than its predecessor at 10.9 inches and the all-new A14 Bionic processor. This powerful new chip offers better efficiency and graphics performance. It is expected to power the upcoming iPhone 12 lineup later this year. The iPad Air 4 will also pack in a liquid retina display for striking colors and contrast. A USB Type-C port replaces the old Lightning connector for this year's iPad Air as well.
Starting at $599, the iPad Air 4 is being targeted as a hybrid device that bridges the gap between the traditional iPad designs and the Pro models. Along with Apple Pencil support and compatibility with the Magic Keyboard, the Air 4 is more capable of being a laptop replacement than ever before. As its front bezels have been shaved down, the fingerprint ID touch sensor from the previous model has been relocated onto the power button atop the tablet. This is the first time a biometric scanner has been integrated with a power button on an iPad. Still, the iPad Pro models offer advantages like lidar cameras, Face ID, and fast refresh rates for power users that did not make the cut for the new iPad Air 4.
Both the iPad Air 4 and 8th-generation iPad will be available in a wide range of colors and storage options. As with past releases, buyers can expect to see LTE-enabled models hitting stores and mobile service carriers shortly after launch. For all of the announcements out of Apple's September 2020 Event, keep it tuned to Shacknews.