History of iPad Air

iPad Air is the second line of the iPad series that was introduced in 2013 and continues to this day. iPad Air is dedicated to specific users, same as the iPad, iPad mini and iPad Pro, Air has been developed over the years, and gained features such as; Retina Display, Touch ID, 5G connectivity, Apple Silicon, Advanced Camera System, Center Stage, USB-C, support for Apple Pencil, and much more.

The iPad Air was introduced as a continuation of the iPad 2, but later on, Apple decided to keep the regular iPad line in its portfolio alongside iPad Air. iPad Air always was containing more changes and features better performance than the regular iPad. Nowadays there is a big gap between the regular iPad and iPad Air series when it comes to design, features, and functionalities. When a regular iPad is an entry-level tablet, iPad Air is dedicated to the customers that need more versatility.

All models of the iPad Air Series

Original iPad Air

iPad Air
Source: pinterest.com – iPad Air

The first iPad Air has been introduced on October 22, 2013, and discontinued two years and five months later on March 21, 2016. Today this device is 8 years old.

The original iPad Air features a Dual-Core 1.4 GHz 64-bit Apple A7 processor with Quad-Core graphics, Apple M7 motion coprocessor, 1 GB of RAM, 9.7″ high-resolution Retina multi-touch widescreen LCD IPS Display, Wi-Fi, 16 GB / 32 GB / 64 GB or 128 GB of flash memory, Bluetooth 4.0, Dual camera system; front 1.2 Mpix FaceTime HD camera, and rear 5.0 Mpix camera with 1080p video recording capability, accelerometer, Ambient light sensor, digital compass, Lightning port, 3.5-mm headphone jack, and an optional version with GPS, and 4G / LTE data capability.

The iPad Air marked the first major design change for the iPad since the iPad 2; it has a thinner design that is 7.5 millimeters thick and has a smaller screen bezel similar to the iPad mini. Apple reduced the overall volume for the iPad Air by using thinner components resulting in a 22% reduction in weight over the iPad 2. It retains the same 9.7-inch screen as the previous iPad model. 

The new front-facing camera is capable of video in 720p HD and includes face detection and backside illumination. The rear camera received an upgrade as well; now being called the iSight camera, in addition to the same functions as the front camera it also contains a 5 Mpix CMOS, hybrid IR filter, and a fixed ƒ/2.4 aperture. The device was available in space gray and silver colors.

The original price of the iPad Air started at $499

Go to the full specifications of the iPad Air

iPad Air 2

iPad Air 2
Source: gadgetreview.com – iPad Air 2

The iPad Air 2 has been introduced on October 16, 2014, and discontinued two years and five months later on March 17, 2017. Today this device is 7 years old.

The iPad Air 2 features a Three-Core 1.5 GHz 64-bit Apple A8X processor with Eight-Core graphics, Apple M8 motion coprocessor, 2 GB of RAM, 9.7″ high-resolution Retina multi-touch widescreen LCD IPS Display, fingerprint identity Touch ID sensor built into the Home button, Wi-Fi, 16 GB / 32 GB / 64 GB or 128 GB of flash memory, Bluetooth 4.0, Dual camera system; front 1.2 Mpix FaceTime HD camera, and rear 8.0 Mpix camera with 1080p video recording capability, accelerometer, Ambient light sensor, digital compass, Lightning port, 3.5-mm headphone jack, and an optional version with GPS, and 4G / LTE data capability.

The iPad Air 2 inherits hardware similar to both the iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus with a major change in the processor to the Apple A8X, the high-end 3-core variant of the Apple A8. The iPad Air 2 has 2 GB RAM (making the iPad Air 2 the first iOS device to have more than 1 GB RAM) and the PowerVR GPU has 8 cores. 

It also uses the Apple M8 motion co-processor which has a barometer and is the first generation of the iPad to inherit the fingerprint Touch ID sensor from the iPhone. In addition, compared to the iPad Air, it includes an improved 8 Mpix (3264×2448) rear-facing camera with 10 fps burst mode and slow-motion video at 120 fps, similar to the iPhone 5s camera capabilities. 

The front-facing FaceTime HD camera has also been improved with a larger ƒ/2.2 aperture, which allows 81% more light in the image. Apple added a gold option to the existing silver and space gray color choices for the iPad Air 2, the previous existing colors were used on the preceding iPad Air.

Unlike previous iPads, in the new iPad Air the mute/orientation lock switch has been removed to accommodate the reduced depth. Instead, the user must use the Control Center to access these functions.

The original price of the iPad Air 2 started at $499

Go to the full specifications of the iPad Air 2

iPad Air 3rd Generation

iPad Air 2019
Source: pinterest.com – iPad Air 2019

The iPad Air 2019 has been introduced on March 18, 2019, and discontinued one year and six months later on September 15, 2020. Today this device is 3 years old.

The iPad Air 3 features a Six-Core 2.5 GHz 64-bit Apple A12 Bionic processor with Quad-Core graphics, an Apple M12 coprocessor, a new 10.5″ Retina LED-backlit LCD IPS Display with True Tone, fingerprint identity Touch ID sensor built into the Home button, Wi-Fi, 3 GB of RAM, 64 GB or 256 GB of flash memory, Bluetooth 5.0, Dual camera system; front 7 Mpix FaceTime Full HD camera, and rear 8 Mpix camera with 1080p video recording capability, accelerometer, Ambient light sensor, digital compass, Apple Pencil (1st Generation) support, Lightning port, 3.5-mm headphone jack, and an optional version with GPS, 3G, 4G / LTE data capability.

The third generation of iPad Air features an upgraded, 7 Megapixel front camera (used first in the iPhone 7 and up to the iPhone Xs), compared to the 1.2 Megapixel camera found in the previous generation. However, it retains the same, older 8MP rear camera.

The iPad has a 2.5 GHz Six-Core processor, the Apple A12 Bionic chip. That chip has a 66% faster clock speed than the 1.5GHz triple-core Apple A8X in the iPad Air 2. It also has a slightly larger 10.5-inch Retina display, which allows the LCD to adapt to ambient lighting to change its color and intensity in different environments, and P3 wide color gamut to allow the LCD shows more vibrant colors.

This iPad Air retains the Lightning port, keeps the headphone jack, and has a slightly larger battery of 30.2 watt-hours (up from 27.6 Wh), rated by Apple to provide the same “10 hours” of active use.

The original price of the iPad Air 3rd Gen started at $499

Go to the full specifications of the iPad Air 2019

iPad Air 4th Generation

iPad Air 2020
Source: apple.com – iPad Air 2020

The iPad Air 2020 has been introduced on September 15, 2020, and discontinued one year and six months later on March 8, 2022. Today this device is 2 years old.

The iPad Air 4 features a Six-Core 3.0 GHz 64-bit Apple A14 Bionic processor with Quad-Core graphics, Apple M14 coprocessor, a new 10.9″ Liquid Retina HD LCD IPS Display with True Tone, fingerprint identity Touch ID sensor built into the Sleep / Wake up button, Wi-Fi, 4 GB of RAM, 64 GB or 256 GB of flash memory, Bluetooth 5.0, Dual camera system; front 7 Mpix FaceTime Full HD camera, and rear 12 Mpix camera with 4K video recording capability, Smart Connector, Magnetic Connector, accelerometer, Ambient light sensor, digital compass, Apple Pencil 2nd Generation support, USB-C port, and an optional version with GPS, 3G, 4G / LTE data capability.

The iPad Air 2020 features an updated design, similar to that of the iPad Pro 11-inch. It features a larger 10.9-inch Liquid Retina Display, USB-C, and support for the second-generation Apple Pencil, Magic Keyboard for iPad, and Smart Keyboard Folio. However, there is no ProMotion display and no camera flash. 

The home button is removed, and the Touch ID has been relocated to the Sleep / Wake Up button on the top-right edge of the device. In addition, in contrast to the iPad Air 3rd Generation, the fourth-generation iPad Air lacks a headphone jack.

The original price of the iPad Air 4th Gen started at $599

Go to the full specifications of the iPad Air 2020

iPad Air 5th Generation

iPad Air M1 2022
Source: apple.com – iPad Air M1 2022

The iPad Air 2022 has been introduced on March 8, 2022, and is still available in Apple Store. Today this device is 7 months old.

This iPad Air 5 features a 3.2 GHz 8-Core Apple M1 processor, a 16-Core Neural Engine, 8-Core integrated Apple GPU, 8 GB of RAM, a 10.9″ Liquid Retina HD LCD IPS Display with True Tone, fingerprint identity Touch ID sensor built into the Sleep / Wake up button, Wi-Fi, 64 GB or 256 GB of flash memory, Bluetooth 5.0, Dual camera system; 12 Mpix Ultra wide front camera with Centre Stage, and rear 12 Mpix camera with 4K video recording capability, Smart Connector, Magnetic Connector, accelerometer, Ambient light sensor, digital compass, Apple Pencil 2nd Generation support, USB-C port, and an optional version with GPS, 5G data capability.

The original price of the iPad Air 5th Gen started at $599

Go to the full specifications of the iPad Air 2022

Article last updated: June 18, 2022
Article next update: September 2022