The baseline 9.7-inch iPad may lack a lot of the power of its specialized siblings like the iPad Air and iPad Pro (and even the iPad mini), but it’s a great little device for anyone who just needs a dependable tablet. Today, Amazon is selling the 128GB model for the lowest price we’ve ever seen it listed for—although, truth be told, it’s only a dollar less than the previous low mark. Still, that’s a $101 discount, which lets you pick it up for just $328, down from the usual price of $429. For a bit of context, that’s a dollar less than you’d pay for the 32GB model at retail.
For that matter, the 32GB model is also enjoying an $80 discount, which brings the price down to $249. Short of a Black Friday sale, I can’t imagine these prices going much lower.
It’s also a good day for anyone who wants to stay connected by using the Wi-Fi and cellular model, as you can get the 32GB variety for just $379, down $80 from the normal price of $459. If you want the roomier 128GB model, you can pick it up for $459, down $100 from the usual price of $559.
If you’re planning on using the iPad with robust apps like the upcoming full version of Adobe Photoshop, you’ll probably be better off buying anything from the iPad Air to one of the beastly iPad Pros. But for most apps, games, and activities, this model does just fine. It’s got Apple’s impressive A10 Fusion chip packed inside, a rear 8MP camera, a front 1.2MP camera, and it supports the first-generation Apple Pencil (which you’ll have to buy separately).
Thanks to the new "iPadOS" Apple announced at WWDC last week, it will be a decent laptop replacement for some users when the operating system officially debuts sometime in the fall.
For more information, be sure to check out my review from April last year, in which I said it was "’pro’ enough for many of us." And I still believe that. Here’s how I summed up my thoughts at the time:
"In our review of last year’s 9.7-inch iPad, we said it was a "better choice than the iPad Pro for a lot of users," and the addition of Apple Pencil support and a faster processor makes that especially true for this year’s model. For $329, you’re getting a stellar tablet that feels as though it’s very capable, although without some quality-of-life features. For a general-purpose tablet for school, business, or pleasure, it currently doesn’t get any better than this."