The new iPad model comes with better speakers, a faster chip, a bigger display, a 10-hour battery, and a price jump.
Apple’s base model iPad has a refreshed look and feel bringing in the much-anticipated redesigns from a better display screen and a few more accessories but also an upgrade to the price.
The new base model is a 10th-generation iPad and has been tagged at £499/$449/A$749. The previous 9th generation iPad models are still on sale at £369 while Apple has the similar sized iPad Air at £669. The cost went up following weak currency rates.
Previous models of the iPad series cost less when compared to the price of new one but Apple has not upgraded the design of the low-end tablet in about seven years. This first-time update is seven years has given the low-end tablet a new clone-like look of the current iPad Air with a body that is smooth and flatter like other iPad models that have been produced since 2018.
With the new design, the home button and large bezels have vanished to allow the 10.9-inch screen to fit on a body of almost the same size as the last model series. The big improvement means the tablet is now fit for the bag with a small and light body.
When you hold the tablet, in the landscape you get stereo speakers which are perfect when watching a movie. Unlike previous models, this model comes with a USB-C charging and connection port. For an improved video call experience when you hold the tablet in landscape, the iPad has for the first time moved the automatic pan-and-scan webcam to the top edge. The bad news is that if you want to use wired headphones you will need a USB-C adapter because the 3.5mm headphone jack has been removed.
If we compare the screen to that of the iPad Air, the display is not as good, with color representation a little worse, and offers no anti-reflective coating which means you will have difficulties seeing what’s on the screen in direct sunlight. The screen is also not fully laminated as noted in other expensive models.
Strangely, while the design of the new iPad has been built from previous models, the new iPad does not share accessory similarities with its predecessor or the iPad Air or Pro models. While most iPads are using the second-generation Apple Pencil stylus the base-level tablet supports the first-generation stylus. It also comes with a smart connector that is new on one edge and can only connect to a new Magic Keyboard Folio and not other keyboards by Apple.
- Screen: 9-inch 2360 x 1640 Liquid Retina display (264ppi)
- Processor: Apple A14
- Operating system: iPadOS 16.1
- Ram: 4GB
- Storage: 64GB or 256GB
- Camera: 12MP rear, 12MP selfie
- Connectivity: Wifi 6 (5G optional)
- Size: 8 x 179.5 x 7mm
- Weight: 477g (418g for the 5G version)
A14 chip with 10 hours of battery life
Inside the new iPad is just like the 2020 iPad Air with its A14 chip, 4GB RAM, and memory storage of either 64GB or 256GB. The Apple chip is essentially two years old but is powerful enough to handle daily use such as browsing, watching videos, playing games, performing office duties to even using sophisticated image editing apps like Affinity Photo.
The battery will take close to 2hrs 3o minutes to fully charge and will last you up to 10 hours if you use it for simple tasks such as watching a video or browsing. Other iPad models also offer a battery life of between 8 and 10 solid hours.
The iPad is made out of recycled aluminum, copper, gold, tin, plastic, and other uncommon earth elements. The tablet’s environmental impact is available as a report from Apple and can be traded in and recycled for free.
Apple has however not provided the lifespan expectancy for the battery but it should at least provide 80% of its original capacity after over 500 full charge cycles. The battery can be replaced for £129. The tablet is itself repairable and for out-of-warranty repairs for the tablet including the screen, the cost is £329.
The iPad comes with Apple’s new software for its tablets that is already available in other models. With the IOS 16 on board, the iPad introduces new features such as being able to automatically cut out objects appearing in your images.
Some iPadOS 16.1 features though are not available in the base model, for example, Stage Manager has been limited to the iPad Pro line and M1 iPad Air but you will likely still get software support of up to eight years as usually provided by Apple.
The 64GB iPad is at £499($499/A$749) while the 5G capable models will cost £179($150/A$250) extra.
The 1Oth generation tablet is good but fails to impress UK buyers with its high cost.
For a low-end tablet, the upgrades are a fine tune from Apple which has brought the tablet closer to other iPads in the line. Looks like Apple has responded well to what users have been asking for a long time. New features have made video calls, watching videos, emailing, browsing, and even shopping a brilliant experience. Compared to other Android tablets, this new Tab has access to a good pool of apps and services.
It is however a hard bargain at £500 and not such a good price to recommend it. With this economy finding a good iPad at a great price is a good idea and the 2021 iPad is a good example, you can find it at £330 and still get the same experience but for higher-end models, the iPad Air is available at £600.
It seems the new iPad is wedged between being a good tablet and one that can only be great if it was around £400.