Apple Back to School promo returns to Australia & New Zealand, offers Beats or iPad discounts

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Apple on Wednesday launched the Australian and New Zealand editions of its annual Back to School sale, offering either Beats headphones or iPad discounts to qualifying shoppers buying a new Mac.

From today through March 21, university students, their parents, and/or educational staff buying a Mac will receive instant credit towards a free pair of Beats Solo2 headphones, or else a discount when buying an iPad. People can also choose to upgrade to Solo2 Wireless headphones, but will have to pay the remaining price gap, which is A$140 in Australia, or NZ$180 in New Zealand.

Notably the promotion excludes the Mac mini — which hasn't been updated since 2014 — or any refurbished computers.

Apple's 2015 Australian and New Zealand deals were focused on gift cards. The new ones are patterned after last August's U.S. promotion, and may hint that Apple will adopt the same strategy in its home country later this year.

The difference in the timing of the Back to School events is linked to the start of the Australian and New Zealand school years, which in turn reflect autumn and winter in the southern hemisphere.