iPad 2 price cut official: Is this the end for low price Android tablets?

Looks like the rumors were true. The iPad 2 is sticking around despite the arrival of the new iPad with insane Retina Display. That’s great news for bargain hunters: say hello to the budget iPad.

Just as Apple continues to sell older iPhone models alongside its latest model – the 2009 iPhone 3GS is still widely available, for instance – the Cupertino company has revealed that for the first time it will adopt a similar approach with its iPad tablet computers.

Alongside the new iPad, which will start at $499 or £399 for the 16GB Wi-Fi only model, the 16GB Wi-Fi only iPad 2 will stay on sale. In the US, it will be priced at $399, while the 3G model will sell for $529. That’s about £63 less than their equivalent new iPad models, so we’d expect a price of arounf £320- £350 here in the UK – we should know more shortly.

Thrifty tablet shopped tempted by a low price Android tablet may think twice, but speaking on stage at the company’s keynote today, Apple senior vice-president of worldwide marketing, Phil Schiller, said it was as much aimed at schools as savvy shoppers. “This is really huge,” he said. “So many more schools can afford to move to new iPad technology in the classroom.”

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