Affiliate Disclosure
If you buy through our links, we may get a commission. Read our ethics policy.

2018 iPad now for sale at Apple store, in-store pickup available at most locations in US

Apple kicked off in-store sales of the new 9.7-inch iPad through its retail chain on Friday, making good on promises to deliver the budget tablet to customers by week's end.

A quick survey of Apple's online store shows immediate availability at many locations in the U.S. and Canada, as well as Australia and major markets in Asia including Japan and Singapore. Europe appears to be receiving stock tomorrow, with both Germany and the UK showing pickup times on Saturday.

In-store pickup estimates are not yet displayed in other locales, including the important Chinese market, though ship times in most launch countries are slated for one business day.

Apple revealed the sixth-generation 9.7-inch iPad alongside a slew of educational software at its "Let's Take a Field Trip" event in Chicago on Tuesday.

The $329 slate includes a few internal improvements over last year's model, the most substantial being support for Apple Pencil.

Powering the device is Apple's A10 Fusion processor with 2GB of RAM, which first debuted in iPhone 7 and 7 Plus. Compared to its A9 predecessor, the new chip provides a 40 percent increase in processor performance and a 50 percent boost in graphics performance, suitable for augmented reality applications.

Everything else stays much the same, with an 8-megapixel rear-facing camera, front-facing 1080p FaceTime HD shooter, non-laminated display and Touch ID module for biometric authentication. The design also remains largely unchanged from the 2017 iPad, with silver, Space Gray and gold finishes.

In the U.S., iPad starts at $329 for a Wi-Fi version with 32GB of storage and moves up to $429 for a model with 128GB of flash memory. Cellular models are also available in the same capacities for $459 and $559, respectively.

As part of its renewed push into the classroom, Apple is offering the new iPad to schools and education customers at a discounted price of $299.

Outside of Apple, authorized reseller B&H is also accepting pre-orders for the 2018 iPad line with no tax collected in most states.

To help customers on the fence about picking up the latest budget iPad, AppleInsider compared the model against iPad Pro and the 2017 iPad and iPad Air 2. We also went hands-on with the device at Tuesday's event.