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An Education

Okay, I've sat on it for a bit. And read some slightly less hot -- lukewarm? -- takes. I still think
First Draught
An Education
By M.G. Siegler • Issue #119 • View online
Okay, I’ve sat on it for a bit. And read some slightly less hot – lukewarm? – takes. I still think today’s Apple education event was a swing and a miss
Look, I love the iPad. However much you think you love the iPad, I probably love it more than you do. I use it for ~90% of my computing needs these days (and the other ~10% is about work-related auth issues – with a slight nod to the preference to editing my writing on the “desktop web” as well – though I mainly write on the iPad). The iPad might be my favorite computer. 
But. I think Apple is throwing away an opportunity here with the iPad in schools. On paper, what they announced today looks decent. Higher-end specs at a lower entry price point. But they seem oddly focused on the specs and as such are missing the little things. I totally agree with this piece by Troy Wolverton. This educational iPad needs to include some sort of case. Ideally a case that holds an Apple Pencil. And ideally an Apple Pencil that comes with the iPad. Oh, and a keyboard.
I know how this must sound. I used to make fun of people who said the iPhone needed a physical keyboard. This is different. The reality of our current world trumps Apple aiming for the future here, at least in this segment of the market. If Apple really wants to compete with Chromebooks in schools, these are the table stakes. 
I can hear it now. But, but, but – the iPad is a more high-end device than those Chromebooks. Sure. I agree. Doesn’t matter. If Apple’s goal is to get the most profit out of schools and students, okay. That in no way should be the goal here. It’s about planting seeds that will grow into profitable fruit down the line. Obviously. This is what Apple used to do. And it worked beautifully. But they’re not doing that here. And I’m not sure why.
There’s more to say. But I’ll cut it off here and expand later. I’ll just note that this is the second miss in a row for Apple, the first being the HomePod. And if you include the MacBook Pro Touch Bar, there’s an undeniable trend here. The AirPods are brilliant. The iPhone X is great. But the batting average is dropping…

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'An Education' is a great movie, if you haven't seen it...
'An Education' is a great movie, if you haven't seen it...
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M.G. Siegler

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