How to buy the new 9.7-inch iPad in the U.S.

Apple has just updated the 9.7-inch iPad to now support Apple Pencil. On the outside, it's pretty much the same as its predecessor, the 2017 9.7-inch iPad, but that little bit of extra technology at the exact same price makes it too enticing to pass up. If you're ready to buy the newest iPad, here's the best way to get it.

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Should I go with Wi-Fi only or Wi-Fi + Cellular?

Well, do you think you'll be traveling with your iPad regularly? If so, it's a good idea to make sure it has the ability to go online at any time. Some people won't end up using their iPad outside of a wi-fi network very often and the extra cost might not seem worth it. Others are on the go a lot and need to be able to use their iPad like a smartphone with the ability to upload content and go online anywhere and everywhere. If you're not sure whether you should go with the cellular option on your iPad, see what your options are.

Everything you need to know about iPad cellular options

Should I order now and have it shipped to me or pick it up in-store?

The 9.7-inch iPad doesn't seem to be in threat of low stock, so it's possible you can walk into your local Apple Store or Best Buy and take one right of the shelf on launch day, March 30. At my local Apple Store, shipping time puts it in my hands on April 3 or 4, though I could probably just go there on Friday and buy one off the shelf.

For the 9.7-inch iPad, I actually recommend ordering online and choosing the in-store pick up since you won't have to wait a few days for it to arrive.

In my area, I'm not yet able to choose in-store pick up at my local Apple Store, but I am able to do so at Best Buy. Depending on where you live, you might want to shop around for the best way to order online for in-store pickup.

All that being said, maybe you don't live close to an official retailer that sells the iPad. If that's the case, definitely go with having it shipped directly to you. You won't have it in your hands on launch day, but you also won't have to drive 300 miles to get one.

How should I order online?

Whether you're having it shipped or want to pick it up in-store when it's ready, you can get the new 9.7-inch iPad directly from Apple's online store at, or you can make your purchase from the Apple Store app, which can sometimes work better, especially when you're paying with Apple Pay.

Apple Store App - Download now

What other accessories should I get with my new iPad?

Definitely an Apple Pencil. I mean, that's why you're getting the 2018 9.7-inch iPad, right? You should also consider a case. I personally prefer a good keyboard case because it helps with my productivity. We've been doing a lot of research since the 2017 9.7-inch iPad launched, and have some suggestions on the best apps and accessories you should get.

Do I have to get it from Apple?

You don't! In fact, many official Apple resellers have iPad devices in stock on launch day. Some even offer slight discounts or rebates, depending on where you decided to get one. If you're looking for a deal, or have a gift card for one of these retail stores, you can order right now. Some stores still have them in stock and you can pick one up today, or have it delivered.

Currently, there are only a few stores selling the 2018 9.7-inch iPad, but your options will probably increase soon.

Any questions?

Do you have any questions about how to buy the 2018 9.7-inch iPad? Put them in the comments and I'll help you out.

Lory Gil

Lory is a renaissance woman, writing news, reviews, and how-to guides for iMore. She also fancies herself a bit of a rock star in her town and spends too much time reading comic books.  If she's not typing away at her keyboard, you can probably find her at Disneyland or watching Star Wars (or both).