Should you upgrade to the iPad Air 2 and iPad mini 3?

Posted by phil on Mercredi oct 22, 2014 Under IPAD, The IPhone Blog

When new tablets like the IPAD Air 2 and IPAD mini-3 hit the market one of the hardest decisions we face is whether or not to upgrade from our current model to the latest and greatest. If you have unlimited funds, you can just buy everything, all the time. Most of us don’t, however, so we need to check out the new features, see how they compare to what we already have, and decide if the difference is worth the price of an entirely new device, a price that starts at $399 and goes up considerably from there. So, what’s the difference between your current IPAD and the new ones, and is there value enough to justify the upgrade cost? IPAD evolution Since Steve Jobs first unveiled it at a special event in 2010, the IPAD has improved steadily in one way or another. The IPAD 2 was thinner, lighter, and faster. The IPAD 3 got a Retina display and LTE. The IPAD 4 went Lightning. The IPAD mini dropped back to IPAD 2 tech, but in a much smaller form factor. The IPAD mini 2 brought Retina to the smaller screen, and the IPAD Air made the bigger IPAD noticeably smaller. Now the IPAD mini 3 and IPAD Air 2 add gold finishes, Touch ID, and in the latter’s case, a powerful new Apple A8X processor to boot. */ IPAD IPAD 2 IPAD 3 IPAD mini IPAD 4 IPAD Air IPAD mini 2 IPAD mini 3 IPAD Air 2 Code Name K48 K94 J1, J2 J65 J72 J85 J85 J81 Model Name IPAD 1,1 IPAD 2,1 IPAD 3,1 IPAD 2,5 IPAD 3,4 IPAD 4,1 IPAD 4,5 IPAD 4,7 IPAD 5,1 Launch OS IPHONE OS 3.2 iOS 4.3 iOS 5.1 iOS 6 iOS 6 iOS 7 iOS 7 iOS 8.1 iOS 8.1 Screen Size 9.7 inches 9.7 inches 9.7 inches 7.9 inches 9.7 inches 9.7 inches 7.9 inches 7.9 inches 9.7 inches Screen Resolution 1024×768 (132ppi) 1024×768 (132ppi) 2048×1536 (264ppi) 1024×768 (163ppi) 2048×1536 (264ppi) 2048×1536 (264ppi) 2048×1536 (326ppi) 2048×1536 (326ppi) | 2048×1536 (264ppi) Screen Type IPS LED IPS LED IPS LED IPS LED IPS LED IPS LED IPS LED IPS LED Laminated IPS LED System-on-a-chip Apple A4 Apple A5 Apple A5X Apple A5 Apple A6X Apple A7 Apple A7 Apple A7 Apple A8X CPU 800MHz ARM Cortex-A8 1GHz dual-core ARM Cortex-A9 1GHz dual-core ARM Cortex-A9 1GHz dual-core ARM Cortex-A9 1.4GHz dual-core Swift (ARM v7s) 64-bit dual core Apple A7 Cyclone (ARM v8) 64-bit dual core Apple A7 Cyclone (ARM v8) 64-bit dual core Apple A7 Cyclone (ARM v8) 64-bit dual core Apple A7 Cyclone 2 (ARM v8) GPU PowerVR SGX535 PowerVR dual-core SGX543MP2 PowerVR dual-core SGX543MP4 PowerVR dual-core SGX543MP2 PowerVR quad-core SGX554MP4 PowerVR G6430 PowerVR G6430 PowerVR G6430 PowerVR GX6650? Co-processor none none none none none M7 Motion M7 Motion M7 Motion M8 Motion RAM 256MB 512MB 1GB 512MB 1GB 1GB 1GB 1GB N/A Storage 16GB/32GB/64GB 16GB/32GB/64GB 16GB/32GB/64GB 16GB/32GB/64GB 16GB/32GB/64GB/128GB 16GB/32GB/64GB/128GB 16GB/32GB/64GB/128GB 16GB/64GB/128GB 16GB/64GB/128GB Cellular Data HSPA LTE LTE LTE LTE LTE LTE LTE LTE Advanced SIM Micro Micro Micro Nano Micro Nano Nano Nano Apple Rear Camera none 1.3MP/720p 5MP/1080p 5MP/1080p 5MP/1080p 5MP/1080p 5MP/1080p 5MP/1080P 8MP/1080P Front Camera none 0.3MP/VGA 0.3MP/VGA 1.2MP/720p 1.2MP/720p 1.2MP/720p 1.2MP/720p 1.2MP/720p 1.2MP/720p Bluetooth Bluetooth 2.1+EDR Bluetooth 2.1+EDR Bluetooth 4.0 Bluetooth 4.0 Bluetooth 4.0 Bluetooth 4.0 Bluetooth 4.0 Bluetooth 4.0 Bluetooth 4.0 Wi-Fi 802.11a/b/g/n 802.11a/b/g/n 802.11a/b/g/n 802.11a/b/g/n 802.11a/b/g/n 802.11a/b/g/n MIMO 802.11a/b/g/n MIMO 802.11a/b/g/n MIMO 802.11a/b/g/n/ac MIMO GPS aGPS aGPS aGPS, GLONASS aGPS, GLONASS aGPS, GLONASS aGPS, GLONASS aGPS, GLONASS aGPS, GLONASS aGPS, GLONASS Sensors Ambient light, accelerometer, compass Ambient light, accelerometer, compass, gyroscope Ambient light, accelerometer, compass, gyroscope Ambient light, accelerometer, compass, gyroscope Ambient light, accelerometer, compass, gyroscope Ambient light, accelerometer, compass, gyroscope Ambient light, accelerometer, compass, gyroscope Ambient light, accelerometer, compass, gyroscope Ambient light, accelerometer, compass, gyroscope, barometer Speakers Mono Mono Mono Stereo Mono Stereo Stereo Stereo Stereo Connector 30-pin Dock 30-pin Dock 30-pin Dock Lightning Lightning Lightning Lightning Lightning Lightning Height 9.56 inches (242.8 mm) 9.5 inches (241.3 mm) 9.5 inches (241.3 mm) 7.87 inches (199.9 mm) 9.5 inches (241.3 mm) 9.4 inches (238.8 mm) 7.87 inches (199.9 mm) 7.87 inches (199.9 mm) 9.4 inches (238.8 mm) Width 7.47 inches (189.7 mm) 7.31 inches (185.7 mm) 7.31 inches (185.7 mm) 5.3 inches (134.6 mm) 7.31 inches (185.7 mm) 6.6 inches (167.6 mm) 5.3 inches (134.6 mm) 5.3 inches (134.6 mm) 6.6 inches (167.6 mm) Depth 0.53 inches (13.5 mm) 0.34 inches (8.6 mm) 0.37 inches (9.4 mm) 0.28 inches (7.1 mm) 0.37 inches (9.4 mm) 0.29 inches (7.4 mm) 0.29 inches (7.4 mm) 0.29 inches (7.4 mm) 0.24 inches (6.1 mm) Weight 1.5 lbs (680 g) 1.33 lbs (603 g) 1.44 lbs (653 g) 0.68 lbs (308 g) 1.44 lbs (653 g) 1.0 lbs (454 g) 0.73 lbs (331 g) 0.73 lbs (331 g) 0.96 lbs (437 g) Battery 6600mAh 6930mAh 11560mAh 4440mAh 11560mAh 8820mAh 6471mAh 6471mAh 6471mAh | N/A Colors Black Black/White Black/White Black/White Black/White Space gray/Silver Space gray/Silver Space gray/Silver/Gold Space gray/Silver/Gold Launch Price Wi-Fi: $499, $599, $699 Cellular: $629, $729, $829 Wi-Fi: $499, $599, $699 Cellular: $629, $729, $829 Wi-Fi: $499, $599, $699 Cellular: $629, $729, $829 Wi-Fi: $329, $429, $529 Cellular: $459, $559, $659 Wi-Fi: $499, $599, $699, $799 Cellular: $629, $729, $829, $929 Wi-Fi: $499, $599, $699, $799 Cellular: $629, $729, $829, $929 Wi-Fi: $399, $499, $599, $699 Cellular: $529, $629, $729, $829 Wi-Fi: $399, $499, $599, $699 Cellular: $529, $629, $729, $829 Wi-Fi: $499, $599, $699, $799 Cellular: $629, $729, $829, $929 Release Date 4/3/2010 3/11/2011 3/16/2012 11/2/2012 11/2/2012 11/1/2013 11/12/2013 10/24/2014 10/24/2014 iOS 8 compatibility The ability to run iOS 8, and to be compatible with iOS 8 apps, would normally be a major consideration when talking about IPAD upgrades. This year, however, Apple is supporting every device going back to the original 2012 IPAD mini and the 2011 IPAD 2. So, almost everyone will be binary compatible with all the new apps coming up this year and next. The original IPAD, which couldn’t even run iOS 7, can’t run iOS 8. If you’re running an Original 2010 IPAD, you should absolutely upgrade. Retina displays The IPAD 2 and original IPAD mini both have standard density 1024×768 pixel displays. So, while both are similarly powered, and both can run iOS 8 apps, neither look as good as their Retina counterparts. This is most noticeable with small text in ebooks and web pages, or the thin lines in iOS 8 glyphs and other interface elements. Even photos won’t look as crisp and clear on standard displays as they will on Retina. If you’re using an IPAD mini or IPAD 2 and display quality matters to you, you should consider upgrading. Apple A7 and A8 processors The original IPAD debuted with Apple’s first branded chipset, the A4. The IPAD 2 introduced the A5, which was also used in the IPAD mini. The IPAD 3 launched with the A5X, which, thanks to the high-density Retina display, struggled under heavy graphical loads. The IPAD 4 had the Apple A6X, based on Apple’s first custom CPU, the Swift, and had plenty of power. The IPAD Air, IPAD mini 2, and IPAD mini 3 all have the 64-bit Cyclone-powered Apple A7 and the Apple M7 motion coprocessor, the same chips found in the IPHONE 5s. They’re beasts. The IPAD Air 2 has the second generation 64-bit Cyclone-powered Apple A8 and the updated Apple M8 motion coprocessor, the same chip found in the IPHONE 6 and [IPHONE 6 Plus). If the A7 is a beast, the A8 is a monster. If you have an original IPAD, you’re going to want to upgrade. If you have an IPAD mini, IPAD 2, or IPAD 3, you’re going to want to strongly consider upgrading as well. LTE 4G networking The original IPAD and IPAD 2 don’t offer LTE 4G networking. The IPAD 3 does, but very limited bands that didn’t offer much support outside North America. The IPAD 4 and original IPAD mini both had good support for international LTE bands. The IPAD Air and IPAD mini 2 offer even more bands, for even more places, and the IPAD Air 2 offers the best LTE support yet, including LTE Advanced. If you live in an area of the world where the IPAD previously hasn’t worked on LTE, the new models are worth looking at. If you live in an area with LTE Advanced, the IPAD Air 3 is really worth looking at. FaceTime HD and iSight Camera The original IPAD had no cameras at all. The IPAD 2 added them for the first time, but they weren’t great. The IPAD 3, IPAD 4, and original IPAD mini both had better cameras, at least as far as tablet cameras go. The IPAD Air, IPAD mini 2, and IPAD mini 3 both have improved FaceTime HD cameras with back illuminated sensors and larger sensors. The iSight cameras are the same as last year, but the Apple A7 chipset’s image signal processor (ISP) should allow for slightly better results overall. The IPAD Air 2 has a much better iSight camera, comparable to the IPHONE 4s if not better on paper. Again, the original IPAD fares poorly here, since cameras are a good thing to have. There’s not enough difference between the other IPADs, when it comes to cameras, to make them a substantial upgrade consideration. The IPAD Air 2, on the other hand, is a serious upgrade and definitely something to consider if cameras matter to you. Lightning connector The original IPAD, IPAD 2, and IPAD 3 all have the old 30-pin Dock connectors. All new iOS devices will be using the all-new Lightning connector going forward, and that’s who accessory makers will be targeting. That means, if you have one of those IPADs, it’s worth considering an upgrade. Siri Neither the original IPAD nor the IPAD 2 have Siri, Apple’s virtual digital assistant. All more recent IPADs do. Although it’s a secondary, natural language-based interface layer, Siri does provide all sorts of benefits, including hands-free control, and faster workflows for many built-in apps, and accessibility for those with visual impairments. Touch ID and Apple Pay No previous-generation IPADs have Touch ID or Apple Pay capabilities. Those are new to the IPAD Air 2 and IPAD mini 3. With Touch ID you can not only unlock your IPAD and authorize iTunes and App Store purchases with your fingerprint, but you can also authenticate for others apps, like password managers and banking clients, and use Apple Pay for online shopping. It’s immensely convenient, and if you already have an IPHONE with Touch ID, it brings welcome consistency to the iOS experience. If you have an original IPAD, IPAD 2, IPAD 3, IPAD 4, or IPAD mini, combined with the other improvements, Touch ID can be a compelling reason to upgrade. If you have an IPAD Air or IPAD mini 2, it’s one of the only reasons, but would have to be significantly important to you to upgrade. Should you upgrade from the original IPAD? Absolutely recommended. The original IPAD, released in 2010, was an amazing product for its time, but that time is now over. It hasn’t gotten a software update since iOS 5 in 2011, and won’t be getting one ever again. It has no LTE, no cameras, no Lightning connector, and no Retina display. Very few, if any, apps will support it in the future, and no new accessories. Should you upgrade from the IPAD 2? Strongly recommended. The IPAD 2 doesn’t have a Lightning connector, it doesn’t have an LTE networking option, it doesn’t have a Retina display, it doesn’t have a modern Apple processor. While it can run iOS 8, it can’t do so as well as a more recent IPAD, and it can’t run Siri. If none of those things appeal to you, by all means run your IPAD 2 into the ground. If, however, you want any of those things, and you want to future-proof yourself so that, when next year’s updates come around, you’re ready for them, consider upgrading. Should you upgrade from the IPAD 3? Recommended. The IPAD 3 has a Retina display and limited support for LTE, primarily for North America. However, it’s Apple A5X processor is maxed out simply trying to run that huge display, and that makes it less than ideal for hardcore gaming or any other graphically intensive operations. It also lacks a Lightning connector, and is slightly thicker and heavier than an IPAD 2. It runs iOS 7, though not incredibly well, and it does have Siri. Released in the spring of 2012, the IPAD 3 is by no means old, even if it is already outdated. It’s a perfectly fine tablet for most people, but because of its strained GPU, it’s not great for everyone. You can probably get another year or more out of it, but if you have the money, and you are frustrated by graphical performance (especially in high end games), you may want to upgrade. Should you upgrade from the original IPAD mini? Recommended. The original IPAD mini has a Lightning connector but lacks a Retina display. It has LTE but it’s Apple A5 processor is three generations old now. It can run iOS 8, but not as well as the latest hardware. It’s a great tablet, and one Apple is still selling, but it’s long past being the best tablet. You can get years of use out of the IPAD mini, but it’s an aging platform and if you have the money and want the latest and the greatest, both the IPAD Air 2 and the IPAD mini 3 are worth considering. Should you upgrade from the IPAD 4? Neutral. The IPAD 4 is great tablet. It has not only a Retina display, but its Apple A6X chipset has more than enough horsepower to drive it. It has more LTE bands to support LTE in more places, and it has a Lightning connector. However, it’s processor is now two generations old and its design is much heavier than the new IPAD Air 2. If neither of those things bother you, than you have no problem. You can keep enjoying your IPAD 4 for a while to come. If you want 64-bit and Touch ID, however, you’ll want to consider upgrading to an IPAD Air 2. Should you upgrade from the IPAD mini 2 or IPAD Air? Only if you want gold, more storage, and/or Touch ID. The only differences between the IPAD mini 2 and IPAD mini 3 is the option for a gold finish, the lower price points for 64GB and 128GB, and Touch ID. The only differences between the IPAD Air and IPAD Air 2 are the same, but also include a reduction in weight and the significantly improved Apple A8X processor. If money is no object and you want a gold finish, perhaps to match your IPHONE, than the cosmetics alone might prompt you to upgrade. If you previously had 16GB or 32GB and really wanted 64GB or 128GB, than you can upgrade to get either of those options more economically than every before (64GB is now the price 32GB was last year, and 128GB the price 64GB was.) Touch ID is also an incredible convenience, and if you have it on your IPHONE already, a much more consistent experience as well. Factor in Touch ID apps and Apple Pay, and again, if you have the money, the value to you might be worth the cost. For the IPAD Air 2, the monstrous Apple A8X processor is something only high end gamers and graphics aficionados will likely find appealing, and if you’re one of them, something you’ve likely already ordered. In other words, for most people the IPAD mini 2 and IPAD Air are still incredible tablets and will be for years to come. For the few people for whom year-over-year upgrades are appealing, well, you likely need no prompting to indulge. Remember: Sell your old IPAD! Though a new IPAD might come with a big sticker price, remember that you can sell your current IPAD to take a little bit of the sting off the top. In fact, if you plan on upgrading to an IPAD Air 2 or IPAD mini 3, selling your old IPAD is a no brainer. Apple products hold their resale value very well. If you’ve taken good care of your IPAD, you should have no problem finding it a new home and putting some cash in your pocket while doing it. Selling the old really does help you afford the new. If you’re not sure how to sell, or if you just want to make sure you get the most money, or save yourself the most time and effort, possible, here’s everything you need to know! How to sell and get the most money for your old IPAD Still undecided? If you’re still not sure about about upgrading to an IPAD Air or Retina IPAD mini, jump into our IPAD discussion forums and the best community in mobile will happily help you out.

Source: The IPhone Blog

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