Apple's March 27 education event in Chicago (live blog)

The company will talk up its new efforts to help students and teachers and likely introduce a new, cheaper iPad.

Shara Tibken Former managing editor
Shara Tibken was a managing editor at CNET News, overseeing a team covering tech policy, EU tech, mobile and the digital divide. She previously covered mobile as a senior reporter at CNET and also wrote for Dow Jones Newswires and The Wall Street Journal. Shara is a native Midwesterner who still prefers "pop" over "soda."
Shara Tibken
2 min read

Chicago, anyone?


Apple's heading back to school, and it's taking us with it. 

The company will host an event today (Tuesday, March 27) at the Lane Tech College Prep High School on Chicago's north side. "Let's take a field trip," the invitation says, asking media to "join us to hear new creative ideas for teachers and students."

Watch this: Apple event on March 27 to focus on education

CNET is in the Windy City to bring you all the news, reviews, photos and video from Apple's event. You can tune into our live blog here. The keynote starts at 8 a.m. PT (here's what time that is in your location). 

CNET's live simulcast with Bridget Carey, Jeff Bakalar and Dan Ackerman starts 30 minutes earlier. Note that the event itself will not be livestreamed -- but we'll be working hard to make sure our live blog is the next best thing.

This promises to be the first education-focused event since Apple's digital textbooks launch in January 2012. The hope is that Apple introduces some new hardware along with its education offerings. That likely will include a refresh of the entry-level 9.7-inch iPad. Apple's expected to lower pricing of its tablet to better appeal to schools. 

Apple has had a shaky track record with its iPads over the last few years. While the franchise was a solid hit for the company in the first few years after its debut, interest in tablets has waned as consumers spent more of their hard-earned cash on upgrading their smartphones . While you may upgrade your phone as frequently as every two years (or more often, for some of you), you're more likely to hold on to your iPad much longer. 

Apple last year introduced a cheaper iPad in an effort to spur sales. The company has increasingly relied on schools and businesses for iPad growth. 

While Apple initially appeared to have traction in getting iPads in schools, Google's Chromebooks have since taken over the US education market. In the fourth quarter, three out of every five devices used in schools ran Chrome software, according to FutureSource Consulting, while only 11 percent ran iOS , which is built for both iPads and iPhones , and 3.5 percent ran Apple's Mac OS.

If Apple wants to win back the education market, it's got a lot of work to do. Check back for CNET's full coverage of Apple's plans. 

This story was originally published March 21 at 5 a.m. PT.
Update, 5:11 a.m. PT on March 26: Added background information. 

The Smartest Stuff: Innovators are thinking up new ways to make you, and the things around you, smarter.

Blockchain Decoded:  CNET looks at the tech powering bitcoin -- and soon, too, a myriad of services that will change your life.