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Hands-on: The new 7th generation iPad, Apple's most affordable tablet

By Kenny Yeo - 28 Sep 2019

Hands-on: The new 7th generation iPad, Apple's most affordable tablet

Note: This article was first published on 12 September 2019 and is republished now because the 7th generation iPad has gone on sale.

You can now use a Smart Keyboard with Apple's most affordable iPad.

Most people weren’t expecting a new iPad at this event but that’s exactly what we got. Apple’s most affordable tablet gets some much-welcomed updates. This is the new 7th generation iPad.

The overall look and feel is familiar, but because of its larger display, this iPad is slightly bigger and heavier than the one it replaces. The last generation iPad had a 9.7-inch display while this new model has a 10.2-inch display. It’s a Retina class display, which means it’s super sharp. The panel itself supports a resolution of 2,160 x 1,620 pixels and like all the other displays that you find on Apple products, it looks crisp, sharp, and vivid.

The rear camera is the same and shoots at 8MP.

Apple Pencil support is still present but only for the clumsy first-generation Pencil. This new iPad also still uses a Lightning connector and it has a headphone jack. What's new, however, to this 7th generation iPad is Smart Keyboard support. Apple’s most basic tablet finally gets a Smart Connector and this 7th generation iPad will be able to use the same Smart Keyboard that the iPad Air and also the older 10.5-inch iPad Pro (remember that?) uses.

Sadly, not much has changed on the inside as this new iPad is still powered by the A10 Fusion chip. Sure, it might be an old chip but its performance is still quite sprightly and should suffice for most people. Interestingly, it’s the same processor that Apple uses in the recently updated iPod Touch.

No USB-C here, just good old Lightning.

Prices of this new iPad will start at S$499 for the Wi-Fi and 64GB model, which is just S$1 more than what the last generation iPad cost when it first launched. There will also be cellular models and users demanding more storage will be happy to know that there will also be a 128GB option.

The design is starting to look old at this point, especially in the presence of Apple's super fancy new iPad Pros, but then those machines are considerably pricier. At this price, with this much portability, and with all of the new functionality enabled by iPadOS, the most affordable iPad looks like a very tempting alternative to budget Windows notebooks. Furthermore, this new iPad will also act as a low-priced gateway, alongside the new iPod Touch, to the world of Apple Arcade.

The new 7th generation iPad is available for order now and will be in stores on 30th September.

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