In March, Apple upgraded the iPad and iPhone operating system to iOS 9.3 (quickly followed by iOS 9.3.1, which tweaked a few bugs). The lead up to the release caught the eye of the K-12 community, which had been waiting for a few tweaks of their own that would help it better manage both shared and one-to-one iPad implementations. It’s only been a couple of weeks since the new operating system hit prime time, but the feedback is already coming in—and it’s largely positive.
Before, the iPad was basically one user per device. The additional features of iOS 9.3 make the iPad very attractive for shared environments. Unfortunately Apple hasn’t addressed the big elephant in the room, and that is the pricing of their models. It’s hard to justify an iPad when you can get two Chromebooks for the same price that will do a majority of the things students need to do.
I really wish Apple would release special iPad models for the educational market that are price competitive. Remember the eMacs? Ok, maybe that’s not a good example, but we had a ton of them, and they worked well (give or take a capacitor or two).