Ahead of its slated March 25 event, and as part of an online Apple Store update, Apple today announced long-anticipated updates to the iPad Air and iPad Mini families. The iPad Air is considered by many to be the budget model in the company’s tablet lineup.
In its latest iteration, the iPad Air retains a similar form factor as its predecessor with bezels containing the front-facing camera and Touch ID scanner, but its display has been bumped up from a 9.7-inch screen to a 10.5-inch version. This LED-backlit display is fully-laminated, and supports True Tone and P3 wide colour gamut. With a resolution of 2,224 by 1,668 pixels (254ppi), the display on the iPad Air offers up to 500 nits of brightness, along with anti-reflective and oleophobic coatings.
Several other features have remained. Apple has elected to retain the 3.5mm audio jack, along with the Lightning interface for data transfer and charging, instead of USB-C as on the iPad Pro 2018 launched late last year. Like its predecessor, the new iPad Air will support the first-generation Apple Pencil. It also retains the single front (7-megapixel) and rear (8-megapixel) camera, and a similar battery life of around 10 hours.
The headline feature on the new 2019 iPad Air is the inclusion of the latest A12 Bionic chip, replacing the A10 Fusion to bring a 64-bit architecture, along with Neural Engine and M12 coprocessor for a boost in overall performance. Apple claims a 70% boost in performance over its predecessor.
The device is available in Silver, Space Grey and Gold finishes in 64GB and 256GB variants. Orders are open from today, starting from SGD 749 for the Wi-Fi model, and SGD 949 for Wi-Fi + Cellular. The Apple Pencil (1st generation) is available separately at SGD 138. The Smart Keyboard for 10.5-inch iPad Air comes in at SGD 248, while alternative case options are available at SGD 75 and SGD 99 for polyurethane and leather options respectively.