2023 iPad Fleet Upgrade Concerns


Hello, Apple community!

I have an original post about 6 months ago about issues with the 1st Gen Apple Pencil and what we hope to see in the future. Well now we have had time to test an iPad 10 and iPad Air 5 in Summer School here and I'm very concerned about our lease renewal next school year. I would love someone from Apple to comment here on "how do we fix these issues for EDU".

Here was the Demo this summer: 5 students used an iPad 10 with a new Logitech Crayon and Logitech Rugged Combo 4 with touchpad for 1 week and then swapped to use an iPad Air 5 with Apple Pencil 2 the following week. The Air case couldn't be a Rugged case because magnets are not located in the same place so the Rugged case does not work. So they used a consumer Logitech case that integrated the Apple 2 pencil for magnetic charging.

Here was the student feedback:

1. We are disappointed in the iPad 10 specs compared to using the iPad Air. There is a noticeable lag when writing with an iPad 10 vs iPad Air. If the school is going to invest in future-proofing a 4-year lease, we want the school to purchase an iPad Air or iPad Pro. The iPad 10 is nice..but if given a choice the Air is way faster.

*However, we can’t move to an iPad Air or an iPad Pro because there isn’t a Rugged Case to protect either model. The students asked me this question with an analogy. "When Starbucks makes their “3 sizes of drinks” they do so where normal people usually purchase the “middle size”.  Students would be very happy with the Air model..however, Apple physically doesn’t have a rugged case that supports an Apple Pencil 2 option to support that model. So the school can't purchase an iPad Air.  So there is no middle size or venti size for a school to upgrade to. And some private schools have the capacity to order 12.9 iPad Pros but again, no option for rugged cases.  And I don’t have an answer for them because I don’t understand why Apple would prevent users from choosing a more expensive model if they can afford or want it. 

2. The new Logitech crayon is impressive, however, students have now said, “It’s annoying I keep having to turn it off and then back on during class when I don’t use it for 10 minutes.”  (Please know, the students currently have an iPad 7, 8, or 9 with a 1st Generation pencil. So I understand their annoyance with this.) The Apple Pencil 2 is excellent, but magnetic charging isn’t designed into any rugged cases…so that’s out. “Why can’t Apple just make a new version of pencil that supports the USB charging into an iPad? The dongle will never work with kids as they will lose it in 1 to 2 days.” Or the quick fix..allow Logitech to make a Rugged case that also supports Magnetic charging. They now make a Rugged detachable keyboard. I don’t have an answer for them.

My issues with an iPad 10 for a 4-year lease in EDU:

Besides what the summer students have said, the iPad 10’s lackluster specs compared to an Air makes me very nervous to standardize on a refresh for 4 years. Half the RAM and lack of an M1 chip in addition to USB 2 speeds in the USB C port are unacceptable for a $150 difference between the devices. When a device is designed to be a “fleet” device and you don’t have USB 3.1 Gen 2 or higher to support ultra-fast synchronization for fleet deployment is ludicrous at the current price point for an iPad 10. 

These are real issues we have with refreshing next year with the iPad 10. Again, we would go to an “Air or possibly a Pro” model…but we don’t have the protective cases to support that.  Will Apple fix the iPad 11 issues for EDU before we refresh?

The quickest and easiest solution: I’m not sure why Logitech can’t make Rugged cases for Air and Pro with an integrated Apple 2 Pencil option so we can choose the “grande” or “venti” option for AC+for Schools with NSF.

Thanks for reading. I realize many will not be able to empathize and understand why these are "deal breakers" because they might not deploy thousands of iPads in the summer or teach in a class when a student's crayon goes "dead" and needs to now charge it but have no option without making a disruption in the class. But we have been in a deployment now for 4 years where students and teachers love their devices, keyboards, and Apple Pencils where they can charge on the fly in the classroom when needed. When you make a purchasing decision for 4 years you want to make sure it's the best choice for students and teachers.


Posted on June 19, 2023 in response to Eggs

Would the adaptor for the Apple Pencil be a workaround for the 10th gen iPad?

In my mind, a rugged case is a huge priority!

Posted on January 31, 2024 in response to tlings

Hi Tim,

While that would certainly "work" as a fix, it would create a whole new issue with students having to try and keep a dongle that they don't lose. That isn't the "right" fix for EDU in my opinion. We have 2-3 students a day who lose their Apple tips. I can't image them with a dongle. Thanks for the suggestion.

Posted on August 02, 2023 in response to Eggs

Hi Matt!

I'd recommend engaging your Apple SE and AE in this discussion. You can find out who your Apple EDU team is by calling 1-800-800-2775 and choose option 4 to get connected with your school's Apple sales team.



Posted on January 31, 2024 in response to DominiqueB-AppleEDU

Thanks, Dominique. I already did that before I posted I also gave that feedback to my LDE and people in the ADE community. I also shared it at our EBC in September with some hardware/software guys. It has all kinda fell on deaf ears. We really need a feedback area like JAMF Nation here so Product Managers are able to respond and let you know if they can add it to the roadmap or if it's never going to happen. feedback.apple.com is a black hole and I have never received any communication on the numerous items I have submitted there.

Posted on January 31, 2024 in response to tlings

Kinda...but they took away the pressure sensitivity of the pencil with the USB-C model. Now I might as well purchase a Logitech Crayon. Not to mention, students would have to keep a charging cable on them at all times as that USB-C port doesn't connect to the iPad Port anymore. I can't win.

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