I bought an iPad Air 2022 not long after its release and thought it was the best choice on the market. It’s powerful, good looking, and has many advantages over the “button” iPads. And it’s not as expensive as the iPad Pro.
However, later in the fall, the iPad 10th Gen was released. After that, I wasn’t sure I had made the right choice. Maybe I should have waited, and the iPad 10th Gen is actually better than the iPad Air 2022. Spoiler: no, they’re just needed for different tasks.
Let’s go over all the differences between the iPad 10th Gen and the iPad Air 2022 so you can decide which one is better for you
Quick specs comparison
Let’s start with a simple comparison of features. Below is a table where you can compare all the main features of both iPads.
|Specs||iPad (10th Gen)||iPad Air (2022)|
|Screen technology||Liquid Retina display, sRGB colour, True Tone||Touch ID build-in top button|
|Resolution||2360‑by‑1640 resolution at 264 ppi||2360‑by‑1640 resolution at 264 ppi|
|Brightness||500 nits max||500 nits max|
|CPU||Apple A14 Bionic||Apple M1|
|Back Camera||12MP Wide camera|
|Touch ID build-in top button|
|Front Camera||Landscape 12MP Ultra Wide front camera|
|12MP Ultra Wide front camera|
|Connectors||USB‑C connector||USB‑C connector|
|Security||Touch ID build-in top button||Touch ID build in top button|
|Sound||Landscape stereo speakers with two microphones||Landscape stereo speakers with two microphones|
|Internet||6 with speed up to 1.2 Gbps and 5G||Liquid Retina display, P3 wide color|
|Apple Pencil||Apple Pencil (2nd generation)||Apple Pencil (1st generation)|
|Capacity||64GB or 256GB||64GB or 256GB|
|Size||Height 248.6 mm (9.79 inches)|
Width 179.5 mm (7.07 inches)
Depth 7 mm (0.28 inch)
|Height 247.6 mm (9.74 inches)|
Width 178.5 mm (7.02 inches)
Depth 6.1 mm (0.24 inch)
|Weight||Wi-Fi – 477 grams|
Wi-Fi + Cellular – 481 grams
|Wi-Fi – 461 grams|
Wi-Fi + Cellular – 462 grams
|Battery||Up to 10 hours of surfing the web on Wi-Fi or watching video||Up to 10 hours of surfing the web on Wi-Fi or watching video|
|Color options||Silver, Pink, Blue, Yellow||Space Gray, Starlight, Blue, Pink, Purple|
Next, I would like to go through all the main features of these iPads briefly, and at the end, I will tell you which iPad is more suitable for which person.
Display: iPad Air (2022) vs iPad (10th Gen)
The most important thing about any tablet is its screen. Because if the screen is not of high quality, you will not be able to use this device for a long time. In the case of iPad Air 2022 and iPad 10th Gen, there is not much to tell. They have almost identical screens.
They have the same size (10.9″), the same resolution (2360×1640), and the same technology (Liquid Retina display). Their only difference is color reproduction. It should be better on iPad Air 2022, but in real life, you’ll notice the difference only if you put the two iPads side by side and look at them with a magnifying glass. So the displays are the same.
Sound: iPad Air (2022) vs iPad (10th Gen)
The second very important thing to me is the sound. Since I have been using the iPad Air 2022 for a long time, I can say that the sound is close to perfect. The speakers are located on the sides (in a landscape position). They are loud and clear.
Since the same speakers are in the iPad 10th Gen, they are also near perfect. You will not notice any difference in this dimension.
Camera: iPad Air (2022) vs iPad (10th Gen)
Let’s talk about the camera now. The main camera in both tablets is a 12MP Wide camera with the ability to capture 4K video. I don’t know who is using it, but I never use the main camera in iPads, as it’s usually of bad quality, and it’s easier to pull out my smartphone if I need to take a couple of shots.
There is a slight difference with the front camera. The camera itself is the same on both tablets. It is 12MP Ultra Wide with a Center Stage function. However, in the iPad Air 2022, it is located on top in vertical mode as usual, while in the iPad 10th Gen, it is located on top in landscape mode. You can see the difference in the picture below.
I think the camera position on the iPad Air 2022 is better as I use the vertical position more often for calls, but this is a very subjective thing, and you may be comfortable using it in landscape mode.
Apple Pencil: iPad Air (2022) vs iPad (10th Gen)
Let’s talk about Apple Pencil now. I think no one will argue with me that the second Apple Pencil is much more convenient. It has wireless charging and attaches to the iPad with a magnet, while the first Apple Pencil has to be charged through the charging port.
Unfortunately, the iPad 10th Gen doesn’t support the Apple Pencil 2, and you’ll need a special adapter to attach the 1st-generation Apple Pencil to it. That’s because it was designed for Lightning charging, but the iPad 10th Gen has USB-C. So if you like to draw, you need the iPad Air 2022.
Design: iPad Air (2022) vs iPad (10th Gen)
Okay, we’ve got another subjective section. Essentially the design of the iPad 10th Gen and the iPad Air 2022 is pretty much the same. They have the same shape, no front button, and their dimensions differ only a couple of millimeters.
Among the notable differences are the colors. The iPad 10th Gen is available in Silver, Pink, Blue, and Yellow. At the same time, the iPad Air 2022 has the following colors: Space Gray, Starlight, Blue, Pink, and Purple. I really liked the yellow iPad 10th Gen. However, I myself use a blue-colored iPad Air 2022. If color is too important for you, I recommend you to come to the store and compare all available colors personally.
Performance: iPad Air (2022) vs iPad (10th Gen)
The biggest differences (pretty much the only differences) are noticeable in performance. The thing is that the iPad 10th Gen has a mobile chip A14 Bionic, which was developed for iPhones. At the same time, the iPad Air 2022 has an M1 chip, which is used in Macs and MacBooks. Of course, it is cut down, but it still has enough power.
The iPad Air 2022 is indeed much more powerful than the iPad 10th Gen. However, the problem is that this power is not used in many places. If you don’t plan to do video editing on your iPad or constantly play some very demanding games, then A14 will be enough for you.
I would say that both chips are good and show fine results for their money. They are just needed for different tasks.
Price: iPad Air (2022) vs iPad (10th Gen)
There is also a noticeable difference in price. The cheapest option for iPad 10th Gen (Wi-Fi + 64GB) costs $599, while the iPad Air 2022 in the same configuration starts at $799. That’s a pretty significant price difference. For $799, you can buy an iPad 10th Gen with 5G and 64GB or Wifi + 256GB.
I think the iPad Air 2022 is a bit overpriced. However, there are often discounts on it. If you see the iPad Air 2022 priced at $700 or below, it’s not a bad deal, and you should consider shelling out another hundred dollars for a more powerful device. However, the iPad 10th Gen clearly looks like a more attractive offer at standard prices.
Why you should buy iPad Air (2022)
Let’s talk about my personal opinion now. As I have already mentioned, I think that these iPads are just for different people. If you are an artist or just like to draw and you are going to use your iPad to its full potential, then you should certainly overpay and get an iPad Air 2022.
It has a more advanced Apple Pencil with better response and is equipped with a much more powerful chip. With this iPad, you can even do simple work like photo editing or simple video editing. At the same time, there’s no point in overpaying for it if you just want a device for watching videos and scrolling through social networks.
Why you should buy iPad (10th Gen)
As for the iPad 10th Gen, I believe that at the moment, it is one of the best, if not the best, tablets in the ratio of price and quality. This iPad is almost identical to the iPad Air 2022 in appearance and has most of its advantages. If you just need a stylish tablet to watch movies or even do word processing, surf the net, and play games, then the 10th Gen iPad is the best choice for you.
I recommend that you don’t overpay for the iPad Air 2022 if you don’t know what you will be doing on your tablet. If you want to buy an iPad to try it out, go for the 10th Gen iPad. If you need an iPad for specific, more demanding tasks, it’s better to take the iPad Air 2022, as it’s the most advanced, if you don’t count the iPad Pro.