Stephen Hackett makes a good case that Apple should make a cheap education-focused iPad:
Making the tablet more rugged would be at the top of the list for a lot of educators. I’ve heard numbers all over the place when it comes to accidental damage rates for deployed iPads in schools, but making an ePad that could take more abuse would be a winner in most people’s books, I’m sure.
When Apple introduced the iBook G3, Apple praised it rugged design, saying it would be great in schools and at home. I’m not saying an ePad would need curvy rubber-injected plastic around the back, but moving to something tougher than aluminum would be a win.
In the same way that the consumers pressured Apple to make the eMac available for non-education customers, I think the same thing would happen for a cheap and rugged iPad.
My toddler currently uses an old first generation iPad mini in a giant rubber case to listen to VeggieTales, watch Toy Story, and use the Bible App for Kids. His iPad only supports iOS 9, so it won’t get access to the new parental control features that are rumored to be coming in iOS 12.
The current $329 iPad would make for a decent replacement for it, but Stephen’s imagined ePad would be even better.