When it became evident that Apple was planning on releasing a new tablet, most people thought a fresh take on the iPad Pro was in the offing. The tech giant surprised everyone by introducing a new iPad described as the 5th generation iPad or simply the iPad 2017.
The tablet's design looks so good that Apple decided not to change anything with the 2017 version. It still combines metal and glass and comes in silver, gold and space gray. The Power button is at the top, volume buttons on the upper right side while the Lightning port is on the bottom edge. The Apple logo still sits in the middle of the iPad's back while the camera is on the top left portion. The only difference is its size and weight. The 2017 iPad is the same size as the iPad Air 2 but is slightly thicker and heavier at 7.5mm and 1.03 pounds, respectively.
The 9.7-inch display comes with a 2048 x 1536 pixel resolution and is 25 percent brighter than that of the iPad Air 2. The iPad Pro offers more vibrant colors than the new iPad which makes it the better choice for artists and designers. For normal tasks such as browsing, watching videos and reading, the iPad 2017 is very much up to the task.
The iPad 2017 comes with iOS 10 which runs fast and smoothly thanks to its A9 dual-core 1.84GHz processor along with an embedded M9 co-processor. It also comes with the six-core PowerVR GT7600 GPU, 2GB of RAM, and 32GB or 128GB storage.
Cameras are still not the best feature of Apple's tablets or any other tablet for that matter (except maybe the Huawei MediaPad X1's 13MP rear and 5MP front cameras). However, the new iPad comes with an 8-megapixel rear camera with f/24 aperture and an 11.2-megapixel front camera with f/2.2 aperture.
Among the other impressive features of the iPad 2017 are the FaceTime HD 720p webcam, Touch ID home button, and a 3.5mm headphone jack. The best thing about the iPad 9.7, however, is its price. For only $329, one can purchase what Digital Trends considers the "everyman's tablet".
Among the current line-up of Apple tablets, the iPad Pro and iPad Air 2 remains two of the best. Those who already own any of the two may want to stick to their beloved tablets. Those who have yet to buy one, the iPad 2017 may be the best tablet for you.