2024 iPad Air 6 VS iPad Air 5 – Is It Worth Upgrading?

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Hey everyone, Apple just dropped the brand new iPad Air 6 two years after the Air 5. Just like the previous models, the starting price for the 11 inch iPad Air 6 is still a sweet $599. But this year Apple’s also offering a massive 13 inch iPad Air variant that starts at $799, which is $300.00 cheaper than the 2022 iPad Pro with the same 13 inch screen size and M2 chip. But is upgrading from the iPad Air 5 to the Air Six really worth it whether you’re eyeing the bigger screen or the new M2 chip? Let’s find out.

Let’s break down the design changes

The biggest difference between the iPad Air five and six is the front camera’s new home. It’s finally moved from the top bezel to the side, making perfect sense. After all, who uses their iPad and portrait mode anymore? Especially with the yard? See the Magic Keyboard? You’ll be holding it horizontally most of the time. This new position means video calls will be a whole lot more comfortable for the 11 inch model.

Apple stuck with the winning formula Keeping the dimensions exactly the same as the iPad Air 5, but if you’re looking for a bigger canvas. The new 13 inch iPad Air might be your perfect match.

Size wise

It mirrors the 2022 iPad Pro, but the Air is actually lighter, so you get all that extra screen real estate with lighter weight. All right, so the size might be iPad Pro level, but the display? Not quite, Both the 11 inch and 13 inch iPad Air 6 hold on to the same display as the fifth generation. That means the same liquid Retina IPS LCD panel, a standard 60 Hertz refresh rate, and a 500 nits brightness. It’s decent, but come on, this is 2024. We saw the iPad Pro models this year rocking some seriously impressive 1600 nit peak brightness dual OLED panels.

Honestly, even a mini LED display on the iPad Air 6 would have been a nice step up. What do you guys think? Is the display a deal breaker for you? Or is the bigger size and lower price tag enough to win you over? Let me know in the comments below. OK, so the display might not be a showstopper. But let’s talk about the real upgrades.

Besides the size bump, the biggest difference is the powerhouse M2 chip inside the iPad Air 6. This is the same chip that powered the 2022 iPad Pro. Apple says the Air 6 is a whole 50% faster than the Air 5 thanks to the M2’s improvements. We’re talking a 15% faster CPU, a 25% more powerful GPU, and a whopping 40% boost in the Neural Engine.

The M2 chip also unlocks a bunch of cool AI powered features. Like visual? Look up to Learn more about objects in a snap effortlessly lifting people from backgrounds with subject lift or grabbing text straight out of photos with live text Storage finally gets a major upgrade, too.

2024 iPad Air 6 VS iPad Air 5 - Is It Worth Upgrading?
2024 iPad Air 6 VS iPad Air 5 – Is It Worth Upgrading?

The new iPad Air 6 starts with a much more respectable 128GB and scales all the way up to a whopping 1 terabyte. Plenty of space for all your apps, games, and whatever else you throw at it. While the RAM stays the same as the previous generation, there are some other cool tech upgrades under the hood. We’re talking Bluetooth 5.3 for better connectivity and lower power consumption And Wi-Fi 6 E for blazing fast speeds on less congested networks.

Here’s another fun little bonus upgrade

The new Apple Pencil Hover feature. Basically, when you bring your Apple Pencil close to the screen, a little pointer shows up to help you with pinpoint accuracy. So camera and battery are not exactly ground breaking. Both generations keep the same single 12 megapixel shooter on the back. It’s not going to win any photography awards, but it’ll get the job done for quick snaps and videos.

As for battery life, both sizes should still give you a good day’s worth of use. The 13 inch iPad Air actually has a slightly smaller battery compared to the similarly sized 2022 iPad Pro. The smaller iPad Air keeps the same speaker setup as before, which is still pretty decent, but the 13 inch iPad Air 6 throws a little double the base party in your ears. Thanks to its larger size, it packs in a more immersive sound experience.

But the real question is, do you need to upgrade? The M1 chip in the Air 5 is still a powerhouse for most tasks. If the bigger screen and better audio aren’t calling your name, you might be perfectly happy sticking with it Plus, cloud storage is your friend when it comes to managing all your files.

However, if you’re a Creative Pro who needs that extra umph for video editing or graphic design, or if you just crave the biggest, baddest iPad Air yet, then the M2 chip might be the deciding factor.

However, if you’re a Creative Pro pushing the limits or you crave the absolute most power in an iPad, then there might be an even better option out there for you.

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