The iPad and iPad Air share a lot of similarities, more so than differences, which can make it difficult to know which one to choose. With the iPad Air being more expensive relative to the iPad, you might wonder what makes it that different. 

Depending on what you’re looking to buy an iPad for, the features of each different model might help you sway your decision. Especially if you’re considering buying the pricier iPad Air, it’s important to figure out if you really want or need these features. 

The iPad is definitely the most affordable choice, and provides just about everything the iPad Air does. Yet with a larger screen and better display capabilities, the Air might be worth the higher price if this is something you’d prefer to have. In order to make the right choice, here’s a deep-dive into some of the major differences between the iPad vs iPad air. 

iPad vs iPad Air Design Differences 

Both of these models have extremely similar designs, besides the size of the screens on each. The iPad has a screen size of 10.2 inches, while the iPad Air is 10.5 inches. The iPad Air also has somewhat thinner screen borders than the iPad. This means with the Air, you get a lot more space to use. 

Both models also have the home button at the bottom under the screen, as well as a lightning connector. They also both have a front and back camera. However with the front-facing cameras, the iPad’s is 1.2 megapixels while the iPad Air’s is 7. 

So, if a larger screen size is important to you, it might be worth looking into the iPad Air. However, design-wise, both these iPad models are much more similar than they are different. 

iPad vs iPad Air Graphics Performance Differences  

The iPad is well-known for being a great mobile gaming option because of its screen and graphics capabilities. When it comes to the differences here between the iPad and iPad Air, one of them very clearly comes out stronger. 

The iPad runs on an A10 Fusion processor, which is a modified version of the processor from Apple’s iPhone 7. On the other hand, the iPad Air uses the A12 Bionic, which is another processor from Apple’s iPhone, in the XS and XR. 

Because of the update in processors, the iPad Air runs much more smoothly and efficiently. Especially if you use the iPad for more high-end gaming or for its video editing capabilities, having a good processor is important.

However, if you use your iPad for simple activities like streaming or social media, it’s probably not worth it as much to spend extra money on the iPad Air’s upgraded processor. 

iPad vs iPad Air Display Differences 

Speaking of streaming, it’s one of the best uses for an iPad with its spacious yet still portable screen size. The iPad and iPad Air, though, are not completely the same when it comes to giving you the best picture. 

If you’re looking for the best color and light output, the iPad Air definitely outweighs the iPad in comparison. The color accuracy on the Air is a lot more faithful than the iPad. As far as resolution goes, the iPad screen is 2,160 x 1,620, and the iPad Air is 2,224 x 1,668. If you use the iPad for things such as art or design, this can certainly be another plus for the iPad Air. 

The Air also has the True Tone feature, which adjusts the screen’s white point based on the levels of light in your environment. This makes contrasts look better and helps make it easier to see the entirety of what’s on your screen, no matter how much or little light is around you. 

iPad vs iPad Air Usage Differences

Another important aspect of buying any new device is the user interface, as well as what accessories can be used with them. Both the iPad and iPad Air have the same iOS, meaning the interface is exactly the same between them. 

As far as accessories go, you can use the Apple pencil with both devices, as well as Bluetooth keyboards. So both are useful for doing art, design, writing, or other such endeavors. What it comes down to when choosing between the iPad vs iPad Air depends upon how much processing and display power you feel you might need. 

iPad vs iPad Air Final Verdict

Both of these devices are actually extremely similar, with the main differences relating to the upgraded processor of the iPad Air, as well as its enhanced display. 

When you’re deciding which iPad to buy, you should think about what you’re planning on using your iPad for. If you’ll be using apps that would work more smoothly with more processing power, it’s definitely worth thinking about spending the extra money for the Air. 

However, if your use of the iPad would likely be more leisurely, it’s probably not worth the price tag seeing as how truly similar both of these products are in many ways.