New, cheaper iPad for education isn't even official yet and it has its first Chrome OS tablet rival

Acer Chromebook Tab 10 is just like the cheaper iPad, only it's already been officially announced

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Ahead of today's Apple launch event, which could well include a new, more affordable 2018 iPad for education purposes – it promises a focus on "creative new ideas for teachers and students," after all – the first Chrome OS tablet has been announced. 

And guess what? Acer, who makes the tablet, says it's "designed for education and promotes engagement and collaboration between students and teachers". Hmm. Acer hopes the new Chromebook Tab 10 will see similar uptake in schools and colleges to that seen by Chromebook notebooks, which have proved popular.

That makes the Chromebook Tab 10 a direct rival to the new, cheaper education-focussed iPad which we expect to be announced in Chicago later today.

In terms of specs, the Tab 10 has a 2048 x 1536 resolution, 9.7-inch display – the same as the current iPad. It also features 4GB of RAM, 32GB of on-board storage. a 2MP front camera, a 5MP rear camera, and a claimed 9-hour battery life.

The Tab 10 also comes with a Wacom EMR stylus which is embedded in the chassis dock and doesn't require a battery or charging.

In the future, the Acer Chromebook Tab 10 will support Augmented Reality to allow students to use Expeditions AR. Expeditions AR is Google’s AR tech which maps the classroom and then places 3D objects in it so that students can study them, to help make subjects such as biology, geography and astronomy easier to comprehend.

The new Acer Chromebook Tab 10 will be available to "education and commercial customers" in the US in April and in the UK from June. US pricing is said to start at $329, which is the same price as the cheapest iPad.

We think that price would tend to suggest a UK price of just under £300. We can't be sure, though, as we had to use a pen and paper to do maths at school, and have consequently forgotten it all.