Apple revealed its new iPad this morning, a 9.7” model that replaces the iPad Air 2 as the company’s entry-level iPad option. Simply called “iPad,” the new device features some minor improvements over the iPad Air 2, including a brighter Retina display, an A9 chip instead of the older model’s A8 and a slightly larger battery. The front and back cameras are the same, but the new iPad is a bit thicker — 7.5mm to the iPad Air 2’s 6.1 mm — and seems to lose the older model’s dual microphones. The new iPad is currently available in 32 GB and 128GB capacities and starts at $329 — $70 cheaper than the iPad Air 2, which is no longer available on Apple’s website.
The new iPad is still far behind the 9.7” iPad Pro, which features better cameras on both sides, a faster A9X processor, a 256 GB storage capacity option, dual microphones, four-speaker audio and a wide color gamut and “True Tone” display. But with its 32 GB model priced at $599, the iPad Pro is nearly twice the price and not a whole lot faster, making the new iPad far more appealing for those who don’t need all the bells and whistles. The new iPad will be on sale starting Friday.