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Apple Pencil will now work with new iPad, but remains $99

The stylus, revealed three years ago, will be $89 for schools.

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At Apple's Chicago event Tuesday.

CNET

Apple is bringing its Apple Pencil stylus to more of its iPads.

On Tuesday, the tech giant said the stylus will now be compatible with a newly unveiled 9.7-inch iPad that starts at $329 for consumers (the same price as the previously cheapest iPad). Previously, the Pencil was only compatible with pricier iPad Pro tablets. Also, Apple won't be adding Pencil support to old iPad models that don't already have it.

The company also unveiled new features for its Pages app that allows the Pencil to be used in more situations. For example, Pages will now let users add marks to documents using a new feature called Smart Annotation. Also, for the first time, users will be able to draw, sketch or write with the Pencil directly in the Pages, Numbers and Keynote apps.

The Pencil will continue to cost $99 $99, though schools will get a $10 discount. (It's £89 in the UK and AU$145 in Australia.) Logitech will also sell a $49 Pencil alternative, which is called Crayon

Apple revealed the changes at an education-focused presentation at the Lane Tech College Prep High School on Chicago's north side. The tech giant was expected to announce new educational services and devices, including a cheaper iPad targeted at schools, during the event.

Apple is likely hoping to inject momentum into its educational business after Google's Chromebooks have largely taken over the school market. At the same time, iPad sales have slumped.

The electronics giant unveiled the initial Pencil in September 2015, positioning it as a more precise way of interacting with its high-end iPad Pro tablet. The popularity of the stylus, however, has been tamped down so far because it's limited to top-end devices with starting prices of $649. 

Apple was late to the stylus game, following Microsoft's Surface tablets and Samsung's Note smartphones, which had styluses years earlier. Apple co-founder Steve Jobs mocked the technology when he announced the original iPhone in 2007, which may have slowed Apple's eventual adoption of it. 

"Nobody wants a stylus," Jobs said at the time, complaining that the accessory is annoying to carry around. "So let's not use a stylus." 

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First published at 8:21 a.m. PT.
Updated, 8:45 a.m. PT: Adds more details throughout.

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