The overall design is largely the same, with slim bezels on the side and slightly larger ones at the top and bottom. The original iPad Air was heralded for being as thin as a pencil; the iPad Air 2 is 18 percent thinner, coming in at a ridiculously skinny 6.1mm.
To achieve this feat, Apple swapped out the Retina Display for a laminated version, leaving no air gap. It also includes an anti-reflective coating, which Apple says has never been included in a tablet before.
The iPad Air 2 also comes with a new chipset, the A8X, which was created specifically for the device. It uses a second-generation 64-bit architecture, which should improve performance across a range of tasks. Apple says graphics performance will be 180 times faster than the original iPad.
The tablet also includes Apple’s M8 motion coprocessor for more precise motion tracking. While you won’t be running with the iPad (unless you’re determined) it could still prove useful for lower intensity apps and games.
Tablets aren’t known for their photography credentials, but the iPad in particular has proven a useful snapper for many people, both outside and in the home. The iPad Air 2 has an 8-megapixel rear-facing camera, boasting 1.12 micron pixels, an f/2.4 aperture and 1080p video recording. It also supports slow-motion recording; 120 frames per second at 720p resolution.
The FaceTime camera has been improved with a new sensor with f/2.2 aperture, capable of accepting 81 percent more light. Face detection has been improved and it also includes “burst selfies” for capturing perfect self portraits.
In line with yesterday’s leak, the iPad Air 2 has a new home button with Touch ID, which should make unlocking the device just that little bit simpler. It also supports Apple Pay for secure online purchases.
The iPad Air 2 (Wi-Fi only) will be available for $499 (16GB), $599 (64GB) and $699 (128GB).
➤ Livestream (Apple)
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