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Apple unveils the new iPad Air with M1 processor and 5G

Apple has unveiled an updated iPad Air more than a year after the last major update.

The iPhone SE with 5G might have headlined the Peek Performance event recently held by Apple, but the company also announced a refresh to the iPad Air. The Cupertino-based company did not stray far from the last generation design, but there are improvements within the device.

The new iPad Air has got the faster M1 processor Apple used in its Mac lineup, with support for 5G cellular connection. The tablet’s USB-C port is also twice faster, offering 10 Gbps of data transfer speeds.

According to Apple, the M1 processor in the new iPad Air, which is also used in the latest iPad Pro, comes with an 8-core CPU. It is 60 percent faster than the A14 Bionic processor that powered the last generation. The graphics power has also been doubled.

The front camera is also better, going from 7 MP to 12 MP, with support for Center Stage, a feature that automatically ensures you are within the frame during video calls. However, the camera at the back has remained the same. We still encourage you not to adopt it as your main photographing equipment because the iPad doesn’t play nice with other photographers in social settings due to its size. In other words, you would be blocking the view of others.

Apple says the new iPad Air’s screen (10.9 inches diagonally) has a peak brightness of 500 nits and support for HDR. However, if you expected ProMotion, you are in for a disappointment as there is no mention of it. But there are landscape stereo speakers.

The new iPad works with the Apple Pencil, available for the rather princely sum of $129. It attaches to the tablet magnetically, reducing the risk of losing it. It also attaches to the Magic Keyboard ($299 only). However, if you want to save on costs by buying the $179 Smart Keyboard Folio or the $79 Folio cases, Apple assures that the new iPad Air works with them as well.

Touch ID is built into the power button for biometric authentication.

Apple presents the iPad Air below the iPad Pro in its tablet lineup, evident from the prices. Even from the last generation, the Air had a smaller screen, a lower display refresh rate, and a slower processor. However, the Air shared many features with the Pro, like Magic Keyboard and Pencil support. This made the Air an excellent lower-cost option to the Pro. The proposition is even better with this update, with the two tablets using the same chip.

The new iPad Air starts at $599 for the Wi-Fi model, but you will pay $150 for the Wi-Fi and cellular version with 5G support. Internal memory size options are 64 GB and 256 GB (note that there is no mention of 128 GB). Color options include gray, pink, purple, and a silver and gold combination that Apple calls starlight.

The new iPad Air’s pre-orders start on March 11th, and shipment begins on the 18th.

Written by HackerVibes

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