Review: Apple iPad Air (2022). M1, Understated

The iPad Air’s powerful M1 chip makes things run smoothly and you don’t need to worry about “performance”.

Although it may be controversial, I believe the Apple iPad Air to be the most popular modern iPad. Price is a major factor. The original iPad base model was $499 in 2010.  The iPad Air is a tablet screen that can be used for Netflix and email. However, it can also facilitate a wide range of hobbies such as drawing and making home videos in iMovie.

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The new iPad Air is a technical marvel. It uses Apple‘s M1 chipsets, which are similar to those found in the iPad Pro and modern Macs. The M1 provides the iPad Air with a powerful performance boost, which is combined with some minor, but important upgrades, including 5G support and a front camera. This should appeal to anyone who uses iPad Air for everyday computing or video content creation.

What’s New About the iPad Air (2022?)?

The latest iPad Air has a sharp 10.9-inch LED Liquid Retina display, just like its predecessors. The tablet is all screen so the display with P3 wide color support and HDR support is still stunning. Other core specs such as the Touch ID-enabled power button and an estimated 10-hour battery-life, as well its rear-facing 12MP camera and 12-megapixel battery life are back in their familiar form.

Everything M1

The most significant change to the iPad Air is the processor. This will determine whether you are interested in the device. Apple has replaced A14 Bionic, the mobile-facing chip, with the M1 chip. It is similar to the M1 chips in the Mac Mini and MacBook Air. Apple claims that the M1 chip increases the iPad Air’s CPU performance and doubles its GPU speed. Although the math isn’t as easy to see and feel, you can still see that many apps run smoothly, especially those more complex apps like Penbook or image editing such Adobe Photoshop and Genshin.

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Mike Epstein

In some cases, the M1’s impact is hampered by the absence of additional features and support needed to take advantage the processor upgrade. Many iPhone-only apps still have bars at the sides and appear pixelated due to their inability to fit on the larger iPad screen. The iPad Air (2022), unlike the iPad Pro, does not have Apple’s ProMotion variable refresh rate. You can feel this absence. Apps with lots of motion, such as Teamfight Tactics and Twitter on a dull Saturday afternoon, still stutter occasionally. This is a minor issue, but it’s still noticeable.

Gotta go fast(er)

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The hardware changes to iPad Air are mostly situational, and primarily focused on speed. The USB-C port now can transmit data at speeds up to 10Gbps. This is twice the speed of the iPad Air before it. This allows for faster transfers to external hard drive and the possibility to pair with an external monitor of higher resolution. If you buy a compatible model, the iPad Air (2022), will now support 5G sub-6GHz. This allows for faster broadband speeds.

Video calling from the couch

The iPad Air’s most notable new feature is the front camera upgrade. Video calls are still top of mind for many of us. The iPad automatically “shifts” the camera to follow faces in shots, keeping focus in the correct place, thanks to the larger field-of-view.

Older iPad owners may find this a great advantage. This can cause some confusion and makes it difficult for older iPad users to see clearly. Center Stage places your face in the middle of the frame so that you can take a call on the iPad. As long as it is set at eye level, there are no aesthetic issues with Center Stage.

Color coordination

Apple has increased the number of color options available for the iPad Air. It comes in Starlight, Space Gray, Pink and Purple (pictured), as per the color convention for the iPhone 13.

Who should buy the iPad Air (2022?)?


Mike Epstein

The iPad Air 2022 doesn’t have a special feature that will make you want it unless you are serious about computing performance. The iPad Pro may be the better tablet, especially if it’s being used primarily as a replacement for a laptop at work or as a gaming device. However, the iPad Air can do everything, from content creation to web browsing to word processing, effortlessly. It can handle basic tasks for a work-from home job, especially when it is paired with Apple Magic Keyboard cover.

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