The iPad Air is available, and the reviews are in. It’s time to take a look at what the major blogs and sites think of the newest tablet from Apple. With our review roundups, we take a look at some reviews from the major sites and see what they think about the new device in a variety of categories, such as how it feels in their hands, the weight difference, speed and more.
Feel and Weight
TechCrunch – The iPad Air is much, much more comfortable to hold than the iPad 4th-gen it replaces; This isn’t strictly a one-handed device, but it’s as close as you can get with a tablet that still has a gorgeous, expansive 9.7-inch Retina Display.
Engadget – (ed note: While referring to small design changes) If that doesn’t sound significant, just hold the Air for a minute and then pick up an older iPad; the difference is immediately noticeable. Simply put, the iPad Air is the most comfortable 10-inch tablet we’ve ever used.
SlashGear – …it’s slim in the hand and considerably more narrow than the iPad 4, thanks to much-reduced bezels along the sides of the screen, but it’s also noticeably easier to hold for extended periods tahanks to a weight of 1 pound (1.05 pounds if you opt for the LTE-equipped version). Together, those two factors make a considerable difference to how you use the iPad Air.
Daring Fireball – Now that the iPad Air is merely 0.3 pounds (137 grams) heavier than a retina iPad Mini, though, it just isn’t that much extra weight to worry about.
Mossberg – I found the iPad Air to be much more comfortable to hold for long periods than the last two, heavier models.
Our Take – It’s lighter than previous models. Thinner. Because of this, everyone who reviewed it is a fan. Most are happy that the iPad has finally become thinner and lighter (the iPad 3 was a bit heavier and thicker than the iPad 2)
TechCrunch – The iPad Air’s battery offers up to 10 hours of continuous usage, according to Apple’s official published specs, and I’ve found that it easily matches up with the high bar set for power by previous generations.
Engadget – All in all, we were almost always satisfied with the Air’s power consumption.
SlashGear – In practice, though, and with mixed use, we were blown away by just how long the iPad Air can last.
Daring Fireball – …Apple has seemingly been unwilling to bend on a floor of 10 hours of battery life, and the iPad Air maintains this pedigree.
Mossberg – …the best battery life I’ve ever recorded for any tablet.
Our Take – Once again, everyone is impressed with the tablet’s battery life. Walt Mossberg of the Wall Street Journal and All Things D calls it the best battery life he’s ever seen on a tablet.
TechCrunch – Put simply, Apple’s latest iPad soars.
Engadget – Apps load a little quicker than they did before, but again, the areas where you’ll notice the biggest improvement involve more-intense, processor-heavy activities.
SlashGear – Day to day, the combination of iOS 7 and the A7 processor mean apps simply fly, loading with alacrity, showing little to no delay even at system-intensive points like changing between well-loaded email inboxes or playing demanding 3D games, and opening up multiple tabs in Safari without question.
Daring Fireball – The A7 in the iPad Air is a huge upgrade performance-wise over previous iPads.
Mossberg – And I found it to be noticeably faster than prior iPads.
Our Take – As expected, it’s faster than previous iPads.
TechCrunch – In short, both (ed note: referring also to the iPad mini with Retina) are excellent, and lead the market in terms of quality when you factor in color rendering, viewing angle and other visual attributes.
Engadget – …it still looks just as on good as the third- and fourth-gen models. We enjoy the extreme viewing angles, though outdoor brightness is more or less on par with other tablets.
SlashGear – At the same time, you still get that big, high-resolution display which, although functionally unchanged from the previous-gen, is still impressive in its detail.
Daring Fireball – First things first: good god almighty did I miss having a retina display on my daily iPad. I don’t regret switching to the non-retina Mini for a year, but that display is just gross once your eyes get accustomed to retina quality.
Mossberg – (No direct mention of display, but all reviewers seem to agree that it’s the exact same screen we’ve grown used to since the iPad 3.)
Our Take – Overall, everyone likes the screen, but most reviewers didn’t spend to much time talking about it since it’s the same screen the iPad has used since the third-generation device.
TechCrunch – The iPad Air is a huge improvement over the iPad 4th-gen, or the iPad 2, pictured in the gallery. Its form factor is the best currently available for a 10-inch tablet…
Engadget – Surprise: the iPad Air is the best iPad we’ve reviewed.
SlashGear – Yet, for its combination of connectivity, longevity, power, app selection, and relentlessly pared-back design, the iPad Air ticks the boxes that make it the tablet for the everyman.
Daring Fireball – I think I’m going to hold out and buy a new iPad Mini for myself. But it’s a damn close call.
Mossberg – Bottom line: If you can afford it, the new iPad Air is the tablet I recommend, hands down.
Our Take – Everyone likes it so far. It’s lighter, thinner and faster. The only real criticism came from Mossberg who said it’s still pricey compared to competing tablets. Gruber at Daring Fireball liked it, but said he will hold out for a mini. Throughout his review, he kept reminding us that he likes to travel light.
As you may have guessed, everyone liked the iPad Air. If you’re interested, you can read the full reviews below. We suggest you do if you are planning on buying one.
Read the full reviews below: