The first wave of iPad Air reviews are in, and early reviewers are all saying one unified thing: it’s the biggest upgrade to the device since the original iPad. Reviewers are praising the tablets new, lighter, 1 pound chassis and faster A7 processor. 'The biggest competition the iPad Air is the new iPad Mini' said many. For a roundup of all the reviews from around the web, look no further.
CNET (by Tim Stevens):
Functionally, the iPad Air is nearly identical to last year’s model, offering only faster performance and better video chatting. But factor in design and aesthetics, and the iPad Air is on another planet. It’s the best full-size consumer tablet on the market.
However, there is one tablet that’s thinner and lighter still, yet holds the promise of great performance and build quality: the upcoming iPad Mini with Retina Display. At $100 cheaper, that slate could prove the stiffest competition the full-size iPad has yet seen. Time will tell on that front (the new Mini won’t ship for a few weeks), so we’ll withhold judgment for now. If you’re willing to consider a smaller tablet, hold off clicking “buy” for just a little while longer. If you’re looking for a full-size tablet and don’t mind paying a premium to get the best, this is it.
Engadget (by Brad Molen):
The iPad Air is incredibly thin and light, and it's the most comfortable 10-inch tablet we've used. It also comes with a nice boost in performance while maintaining good battery life.
Surprise: the iPad Air is the best iPad we've reviewed. In addition, though, it's also the most comfortable 10-inch tablet we've ever tested. Not every manufacturer can produce a thin and light device without also making it feel cheap or flimsy, but Apple nailed it. Factor in a sizable boost in performance and battery life, and the Air is even more compelling. The last two iPads served up relatively few improvements, but the Air provides people with more of a reason to upgrade or even buy a tablet for the first time.
AnandTech (by Anand Lal Shimpi):
The iPad Air is the most significant upgrade to the 9.7-inch iPad in its history. It’s lighter, more portable, more usable and faster than any previous iPad. It doesn’t fundamentally change what you can do with a tablet, but if you’re in the market for one the iPad Air really is the best iPad to date. Competition is definitely more stiff among the smaller tablets thanks to the Nexus 7, but in the nearly 10-inch tablet space it seems like Apple is going to continue to enjoy a great position there.
Pocket-lint (by Stuart Miles):
Apple has done it again: the iPad Air is a tablet better than the last iPad. Simply put the iPad Air is the best iPad the company has ever made. It's light, it's thin, it's fast, it's amazing.
The problem for Apple, and this is a good thing for us all, is that in creating something so desirable like the iPad Air we suspect that if you buy this model you won't need or want to upgrade for a long, long time. Even iPad 4 owners will likely want one, especially if you're fed up of resting the weightier, larger slab on your leg all the time.