iPad Air vs iPad Air 2 Specs

iPad Air vs iPad Air 2 Specs

Get ready for the ultimate smackdown of the century!! iPad Air vs. iPad Air 2 Specs. Two will enter the ring, only one will exit! In the battle some are calling, “Inevitable” and “Kind of not as big a deal as Nick is making it.” Who will be crowned the winner?


Alright, a bit too much? Let me tone it down a little. The iPad Air was a pretty big deal when it was announced in October 2013 and subsequently released, offering the best qualities that the iPad and iPad Mini had to offer. Finally, Apple had found that sweet spot that would satiate the general consumers digital appetite without being so small it would cause some to squint or too big forcing us to leave it at home for fear of a sore shoulder.  

But like all Apple products they can only remain king for so long, about a year to be exact. Because come the next October a new generation was surely to be announced. And so it was with the iPad Air, when on October 22, 2014 the iPad Air 2 was released along with the iPad Mini 3.

 So which one is better the iPad Air or The iPad Air 2?

Should you get the older, cheaper iPad Air or the more expensive iPad Air 2 or is there really that much of a difference? Or for that matter should you wait for the rumored iPad Pro, or what some are referring to as the iPad Air Plus, to be released in the later part of this year?

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Here’s a video review by Jonathan Morrison of TLD:

Ok, first let’s laugh off this latter question. Ha! Ok, now that we’ve done that, let me answer that with an emphatic “NO!” Do not wait for this rumored iPad Pro. First off, it’s a rumor and last time I bet on a rumor I ended up attempting to hitchhike home from a non-existent George Clooney party in the middle of the Mojave Desert. And secondly, if the rumors are true, then the iPad Pro is going to be quite large and more suitable as a laptop or for checkout merchants in retail shops.

Ok, but enough beating around the Apple bush. In honor of the new “Everything Changes With iPad” video, let’s compare the iPad Air and iPad Air 2 against each other in terms of specs and pros/cons. Let’s see which one is left standing at the end: the old-timer or the new cat on the scene.  

Let’s get into this iPad Air vs iPad Air 2 Specs Battle!

 iPad Air

 The first generation iPad Air or what is also referred to as the fifth generation iPad, was released on November 1st 2013 amid positive reviews.  Armed with iOS 7 (and now with iOS 8) the iPad Air felt like a whole new device. Available in silver and space gray, the iPad Air obviously looks fantastic!  It’s 7.5 mm and weighs just at a pound and 1.05 for the wifi + cellular model, making it very light-weight. Compared to the earlier iPad versions that hovered around 1 1/2 pounds, this was quite an improvement.  The 9.7 inch retina display delivers crisp video and photos while the camera records in 1080p HD. Good stuff.


It uses a lightning connector to charge just like the current iPhones. Apple doesn’t mess with those bulky, wide chargers anymore. Only the slim tech from now on.  Only the 16 GB and 32 GB are still being sold by Apple at a base price of $399 and $449 respectively. So, you’re a little restricted if you’re used to using more data storage. Your best bet is to find a used one if that’s the case.

iPad Air 2

Now, we come to the newest and current iPad, the iPad Air 2. It was released on October 22nd 2014  along with the iPad Mini 3 (but let’s be real, if you want a Mini just buy an iPhone 6 Plus).  The first iPad to be released with iOS 8, the Air 2 is sleeker and faster with available colors in silver, space gray and gold. While the height and other specs like the size of the retina display are the same as the Air, it is thinner, only 6.1 mm. That seems to be Apple’s unspoken motto, “Thinner, faster is the name of the game.” It also weighs less than the Air at just under a pound.


You can also find both models of the iPad Air and iPad Air 2 on Amazon as well.

Now, while the last few models sported the A7 chip, the iPad Air 2 is the first to carry the A8X chip. Not that I’m expecting that to mean anything to you. For all you know, that’s just a food item. Basically, for the laymen out there it just means the system is faster and more robust with better graphics.

Take a look at this video: iPad Air vs iPad Air 2 – Speed Test

Touch ID was also introduced with the iPad Air 2. This may seem like a simple, “luxury” feature but I can’t tell you how many times it’s come in handy when I’m just not in the right position to punch in my 4-digit passcode. All you have to do with the Touch ID is just put your thumbprint on the home button and you’re in!

Ok, and here’s something the iPad Air doesn’t have when it comes to the screen. The iPad Air 2 has a laminated display which simply makes the tablet thinner. It also reduces glare off the screen. This is enhanced even further with Apple applying an antireflective coating. These two combined make for way improved outdoor visibility of the screen and reduction of that annoying glare thrown off by almost every other tablet screen out there.

Added features in the camera that are not in the iPad Air include “burst” photos, 8 megapixel photos with the iSight camera (the camera used for taking photos, not selfies) and slo-mo video. Now, if you’ve read some of my earlier articles you know how much I love slo-mo! If you haven’t already, check out: Easy iPhone Camera Tricks You Should Try Right Now!

The iPad Air 2 is available in 16 GB, 64 GB and 128 GB from Apple at base prices of $499, $599 and $699 respectively. This is to be expected of course as this is the latest model.

Who’s The Winner?

So who won this epic showdown? Well, I guess it wasn’t much of a showdown unless you’re going by Mayweather/Pacquiao standards.  There aren’t a million differences between the iPad Air and the iPad Air 2, but there are a few significant ones. Namely, the processing speed, “thinness”, Touch ID and laminated display with anti-glare.

So with that, I’m going to have to crown…The iPad Air 2 the winner in this iPad Air vs iPad Air 2 Specs Battle!!!!

Yes it’s more expensive but it’s an improved model. If you’re on a budget, sure, go for the iPad Air. But if you’re looking for speed and agility you have to go with the iPad Air 2.  Have you tried both models?  

What’s your favorite feature in the iPad Air or the iPad Air 2?