TI-84 CE Python Edition review: Wait... when did calculators get sexy?

Texas Instruments' latest entry into its iconic graphing calculators has come a long way from your days sitting in pre-cal.

Texas Instruments TI-84 CE Python Edition color options promo image
Texas Instruments

Chances are, if you found yourself in any kind of relatively advanced math class during junior high or high school, you were forced to wield a Texas Instruments calculator.


TI calculators have come a long way in the past three decades, but let’s be honest — unless you went on to pursue a STEM career after high school, chances are your own TI-81 or similar variant has collected dust in your closet back home since Calculus I.

Texas Instruments

These are most definitely a far cry from the TI calculators of yesterday. The company introduced its first handheld product back in 1967, but its arguably most recognizable series of graphing calculators didn’t hit the market until 1990, and… well, not a whole lot changed since then.

Knowing this, you’d be forgiven for missing out on a vital evolution in Texas Instruments gadgetry: The TI calculator got, like, super hot.

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No, seriously...

Texas Instruments

How do we know this information? Because we happened to get our hands on the new TI-84 Plus CE: Python Edition… and just look at this sexy beast right here.

The TI-84 Plus CE Python Edition certainly lives up to its mouthful of a name upon our hands-on. It obviously includes all the myriad functions of its predecessors... which, honestly, we feel like we don’t need to harp by now. So let’s focus on what hot new stuff is under this baby’s hood.

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In terms of storage, TI’s new calculator includes a whopping 3MB of flash ROM for storing data and apps, along with 154KB of free RAM. Its battery is also rechargeable now, and can also be connected to your computer via a USB-C cable.

The display is also backlit with 140 DPI and 16-bit color depth, which feels particularly flashy for a calculator.

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Okay, now what about that Python we keep hearing about?

Texas Instruments

It probably comes as no surprise, but you obviously won’t be doing any heavy-duty Python coding on a TI graphing calculator. That said, it does provide a fun little interface for students and novices interested in the language’s fundamentals.

The TI-84 Python edition comes preloaded with a number of test scripts to fiddle around with, along with an editor and some suggestions on how to integrate the language into math and science projects. Texas Instruments also notes that students can write code and run experiments using TI-Innovator Hub and TI LaunchPad Board programming tools.

Texas Instruments


You won’t be writing the next hit app on the TI-84 CE Python Edition, but it’s proof that graphing calculators still have a lot of utility and provide a great way for students to interact with STEM fundamentals, and more.

Suffice to say, high schoolers have got things so much nicer than their elders had it back in the day...


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