4 biggest surprises from Apple’s totally unsurprising update

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Will we get more than the iPhone 7 next week?
None of today's announcements were keynote-worthy.
Photo: Apple

Apple’s “surprise” announcement of new products and software wasn’t all that surprising if you’ve been keeping up with the latest rumors.

Today’s updates were practically announced yesterday when the company said its store would be down in the morning for “maintenance.” Despite all the rumors of new iPads and RED iPhones that have been out for weeks, Apple still managed to sneak in a few surprises that were both good and bad.

We’re eagerly awaiting Apple’s rumored April keynote, but here’s the biggest, most surprising news from today’s teaser.

iPads linked to bullying in schools, claims British politician

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Will the new iPad Pro land tomorrow?
Is there a link between bullying and iPads in class?
Photo: Ste Smith/Cult of Mac

Bullying in schools? Blame iPads, claims U.K. politician Edward Timpson, the Minister for Children and Families.

Speaking to the House of Lords Communications Committee, Timpson said that iPads are “forming too much” of kids’ school days, and as a result are being increasingly used inappropriately for “bullying and harassment.”

How to get a discount on the new MacBook Pro

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touchbar
The new MacBook Pro isn't wallet-friendly.
Photo: Apple

The new MacBook Pro is the most gorgeous laptop Apple’s ever made. It’s thin, powerful and touchable. There’s just one big problem: It’s expensive as f***!

Dropping two grand on a new MacBook isn’t an easy decision for many Apple fans. But if you’re lusting after the new MacBook Pro and don’t have quite enough cash to foot the bill, there are a few ways you can get a lower price.

Today in Apple history: Dell overtakes Macs in Education market

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eMac
Steve Jobs was accused of failing one of Apple's most popular markets.
Photo: Ste Smith/Cult of Mac

Oct27October 27, 1999:  Dell Computer overtakes Apple in the Educational market, toppling Apple’s lead position as the the top company selling computers to U.S. educational institutions.

Steve Jobs, who is still in the process of rebuilding Apple after its near-collapse in the 1990s, is heavily criticized for ignoring one of the company’s strongest markets.

Apple’s new Swift Playgrounds app turns kids into coders

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Coding is fun with Swift Playgrounds.
Coding is fun with Swift Playgrounds.
Photo: Apple

Apple introduced a powerful new way to teach kids how to learn to code today with a new app called Swift Playgrounds that makes learning Swift as easy as ABC.

The iPad app helps students learn to code by presenting a number of simple lessons aimed at kids, though simpleton non-coder adults can learn a great deal from it as well.

Harvard and MIT teamed up for this open-source online education platform

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Education is easy with EDX's learning platform.
Education is easy with EDX's learning platform.
Photo: EDX

Apple pushes U.S. government to teach kids how to code

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Cook
Tim Cook added his name to this important petition.
Photo: Jim Merithew/Cult of Mac

With its recent purchase of educational startup LearnSprout and its “Hour of Code” programming classes at Apple Stores, Apple has demonstrated that it’s pretty darn serious about education.

Proving this once again, CEO Tim Cook this week put his name to a petition asking the U.S. Senate and House of Representatives to provide $250 million in federal funding to school districts so as to allow every K-12 student in the United States to learn how to code.

Apple’s Classroom app for iPad lands on App Store

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iOS 9.3 embraces education.
iOS 9.3 embraces education.
Photo: Apple

Apple is putting more tools in the hands of educators today with the official launch of the new Classroom app for iPad that promises to opens up new, more engaging ways of teaching and learning on the iPad.

The new app is part of the new iOS 9.3 education features Apple has added that allow teachers to manage student devices, share work and assignments, as well as track students’ progress to help them stay on track.