Apple’s back to school promo is both better and worse than ever

You’ll probably end up spending more.

Credit: IDG/Adam Patrick Murray

For the first time ever, Apple has sweetened its back to school promo with something everyone wants: AirPods. However, the maximum savings are a lot less than previous years.

Apple’s Beats-centric back to school promo has never been all that enticing, but it did offer big savings on headphones. For example, Mac buyers last year could get a free pair of Beats Studio3 Wireless headphones worth $400, while iPad Pro and iPad Air buyers got $250 in credit toward the same high-end headphones. This year’s credit is capped at $159 no matter which product you buy.

Like previous years, the promotion applies to all new Mac purchases except the Mac mini, as well as the iPad Pro and iPad Air.

But here’s the fine print: While you’re basically getting a pair of AirPods for free, you’ll need to spend an extra $40 to get the model with the wireless charging case and another $90 for the AirPods Pro.

That’s not terrible but it’s a little nickel-and-dimey. If Apple could offer $250-$400 in savings on Beats products last year, it could at least give buyers the AirPods with the wireless charging case his year. Making students pay an extra $40 just seems cheap. But at any rate, we’ll certainly take AirPods over Beats any day.

Join the newsletter!


Sign up to gain exclusive access to email subscriptions, event invitations, competitions, giveaways, and much more.

Membership is free, and your security and privacy remain protected. View our privacy policy before signing up.

Error: Please check your email address.
Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.
Michael Simon

Michael Simon
Show Comments

Most Popular Reviews

Latest News Articles


PCW Evaluation Team

Tom Pope

Dynabook Portégé X30L-G

Ultimately this laptop has achieved everything I would hope for in a laptop for work, while fitting that into a form factor and weight that is remarkable.

Tom Sellers


This smart laptop was enjoyable to use and great to work on – creating content was super simple.

Lolita Wang


It really doesn’t get more “gaming laptop” than this.

Jack Jeffries


As the Maserati or BMW of laptops, it would fit perfectly in the hands of a professional needing firepower under the hood, sophistication and class on the surface, and gaming prowess (sports mode if you will) in between.

Taylor Carr


The MSI PS63 is an amazing laptop and I would definitely consider buying one in the future.

Christopher Low

Brother RJ-4230B

This small mobile printer is exactly what I need for invoicing and other jobs such as sending fellow tradesman details or step-by-step instructions that I can easily print off from my phone or the Web.

Featured Content

Product Launch Showcase

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?