The university announced its collaboration with Apple to provide not only iPads, but also an iOS laboratory to students, in October. Photo Illustration by: Ris Twigg | Assistant Photo Editor

Ohio State is putting its money where its iPad is — or will be.

The university is ready to shell out $11.1 million for Apple products as part of its new initiative with the tech giant. Additionally, it is planning to build an iOS laboratory within the not-yet-complete development located at 15th Avenue and High Street. A temporary spot for the lab is still in the works.  

The full Ohio State-Apple partnership contract has not been released to The Lantern. However, information on the costs and laboratory location were recently released in Board of Trustees documents.

The university is calling the deal an “equipment lease,” consisting of four annual payments of $2.8 million beginning this spring.

Though the cost might seem steep, the university is getting a bit of a deal — the total cost for an iPad Pro, Apple Pencil and Smart Keyboard is about $1,000 a pop. The deal cuts that a bit. About 7,600 freshmen were enrolled this year at the Columbus campus. If you take that number with the original Apple product costs, it would bring the sum of a one-year supply to $7.6 million. Add in the students at branch campuses, insurance and specialized courses and the $11 million isn’t as hefty as it could be.  

The Board determined the lease to be “in the best interests of the university,” according to the documents.

The deal cannot exceed the $11.1 million mark, per the Board documents. Additionally, all formal decisions on the lease must be made during Board meetings — openly. Meaning, the group must discuss the partnership publicly, not in executive and private sessions.

Adding to the iPad package students get, Ohio State and Apple plan to supply a shell case and 3-year AppleCare+. Per the deal, Ohio State will own all of the devices, not its students or Apple.

The Board documents detail a few more additions to the partnership, including information on the educators cohort — 85 faculty members will make up this group of iPad trainers for faculty.

This is the first time details regarding the cost of supplying iPads and supportive devices, as well as a location for the promised iOS laboratory, have been released.

In February, University President Michael Drake told The Lantern he was not yet unaware of any iOS laboratory location or of the specific costs.

The full Board will meet Friday to vote on the lease and Apple details.