Introduced on 8 March 2022 during an Apple Event, alongside the introduction of the iPhone SE 2022, the Apple M1 Ultra, and the Mac Studio, the fifth-generation iPad Air or the iPad Air 5 packs some serious performance improvements. Apple decided to power this device with the Apple M1 system-on-chip to deliver processing capabilities that are almost closer to the fifth-generation iPad Pro which was announced on 20 April 2021.
Pros of the iPad Air 5: Reasons Why You Should Buy
The M1 chip is the most notable advantage of the fifth-generation iPad Air with a price tag that is more affordable than the fifth-generation iPad Pro. Consumers who are planning to upgrade from older generations of the iPad Air or the fourth-generation iPad Pro or earlier might consider the iPad Air 5 as a more reasonable choice.
Below are the advantages, selling points, and reasons why you should buy this new device from Apple:
• Processing Capabilities: The M1 chip is a big leap from the A14 Bionic chip found on the previous iPad Air 4. The chip has an 8-core CPU and an 8-core GPU that delivers up to 60 percent faster processing capabilities than the previous generation. Note that the A15 Bionic chip used in the iPad Mini 6 only has a 6-core CPU and 5-core GPU.
• Comparable with the iPad Pro: It is also a more affordable alternative to the iPad Pro. Aside from sporting the same M1 chip, it also has native support for the Apple Pencil 2, the Magic Keyboard, the Smart Folio Keyboard, and all other third-party accessories available to the Pro.
• Digital Art Creation: Support for the Apple Pencil 2 means that it can be used for sketching or digital painting, as well as for stylus-based graphic design and photo editing requirements. The M1 chip allows it to run popular sketching and photo editing apps such as Adobe InDesign, Adobe Photoshop, and Procreate, among others without hiccups.
• Alternative to Laptops: It is also a possible replacement for a conventional laptop. When used with the Magic Keyboard or the Smart Folio Keyboard, this device can be an effective office productivity tool for word processing, creation of presentations, and business communication.
• Improved FaceTime HD Cam: Another advantage of the iPad Air 5 is that it has the newer 12MP Ultra Wide front camera that supports the Center Stage feature to allow automatic panning to keep the user centered on the frame. The front camera capture more light and details compared to the front camera found in the iPad Air 4 for a better video conferencing experience.
• Built For Power Users: The powerful M1 chip also makes this device suitable for resource-intensive use cases. These include editing of videos, playing high-end and top-tier mobile games available on the App Store and Apple Arcade, streaming cloud-based or on-demand video games, and live video streaming.
• Connectivity Component: Another pro of the iPad Air 5 is that it comes equipped with Wi-Fi 6 that supports the 2.4GHz and 5GHz frequencies and an option for a 5G-enabled variant for connecting to sub-6 GHz 5G networks. It also has Bluetooth 5 connectivity.
Cons of the iPad Air 5: Reasons Why You Should Not Buy
The advantages of the iPad Air 5 and its selling points make it an ideal device for users planning to upgrade from previous generations or older models of the iPad. However, it also has some notable disadvantages or drawbacks that can turn off some consumers.
Below are the drawbacks, issues, and reasons why you should not buy this new iPad device from Apple:
• Limited Base Model Storage: Similar to the iPad Air 4, one notable drawback of the iPad Air 5 is that the base model only comes with 64GB of storage. The next variant comes with 256GB storage but with a price tag of USD 749.00. Note that there is only a USD 50.00 difference between this variant and the 128GB-model of the iPad Pro.
• The Absence of Face ID: This device comes with the Touch ID fingerprint scanner placed on the power button and located on the top-right portion. However, when it comes to convenience, the Apple Face ID is a more preferred biometric solution. For comparison, the iPad Pro comes with Face ID facial recognition biometrics.
• 60GHz Screen Refresh Rate: Another disadvantage of the iPad Air 5, especially when compared to the iPad Pro, is that its Liquid Retina IPS display comes only at a 60GHz refresh rate. Users who are accustomed to using devices with higher refresh rates might find the overall viewing experience less fluid and smoother.
• No Flash in The Rear Camera: The camera module found on the back is also better than the previous generation of Air. However, it lacks flash. There are instances when a flash-equipped rear camera s useful, especially when taking images or scanning documents in a low-light environment.
• Awkward Front Camera: It is also worth pointing out that the newer FaceTime HD camera is still placed on the top-middle portion of the front glass panel. This is an ideal location if the device will be used in portrait mode. However, similar to the problems with other models and generations of the iPad, this is an awkward placement since landscape mode is ideal for longer video calls and videoconferencing sessions.
Apple iPad Air 5th Gen Review: Reasons Why You Should or Should Not Buy the iPad Air 5
The fifth-generation iPad Air or the iPad Air 5 M1 is a notable upgrade to the previous generation of the Air line of iPads. The inclusion of the M1 chip means that it has more processing prowess that rivals the iPad Pro and other high-end Android tablets such as the Galaxy Tab S8 and Galaxy Tab S8 Ultra from Samsung. This device can handle resource-intensive apps and multiple tasks with ease.
However, there are notable disadvantages. The most damning is the 64GB storage of the base model. The price tag is also an issue when compared to the iPad Mini 6, the iPad Pro, and other Android tablets. Other drawbacks include the 60GHz refresh rate and the outdated and awkward placement of the FaceTime HD camera.