We are already accustomed to the fact that in the iPad model range there is a division into 4 product lines: iPad minibasic iPad, iPad Air and iPad Pro. However, with the advent of a large number of modifications and generations of tablets, it becomes difficult to understand the differences and choose a gadget for yourself.

To the point: Which iPhone to choose at the end of 2022.

Now we will analyze all the current and available for purchase tablet models in the context of the four lines presented.

Basic iPad

The most “popular” line of tablets is the most popular among buyers around the world. That is why the Cupertinos annually release updates for it, and this year they introduced the 10th generation anniversary base iPad.

iPad 10th generation. Weird tablet not for everyone

New this fall is the anniversary generation of Apple’s oldest line of tablets. The device was the last of all iPads, which was transferred to a new line of design, equipped with a screen with thin frames around the perimeter.

The device received several key changes, however, some of the expected features never made it to the base line.

✅ This tablet has an excellent appearance, frameless design and several bright colors. Used to protect data touch ID in the side power button, the chip is responsible for performance A14 Bionicon board 4 GB RAM. There is a good 12-megapixel camera ƒ/1.8 and a very interesting frontal on the long side edge (12MP f/2.4).

⛔ The disadvantages of the gadget include a modest drive for 64 GB in the basic version, slow port USB-C and support for the old Apple Pencil 1st generation (requires cable and optional adapter for charging) $8). The price tag that has grown over the year is also frustrating.

Who is this tablet for? if you need an up-to-date tablet with a modern look and strictly on a budget about 40 thousand. For additional 10 thousand you can take iPad Airand saving the “top ten” you can go down to last year’s iPad 9th generation.

It turns out a rather strange iPad with a noticeable set of flaws and compromises.

Buy iPad 10th generation (2022): expected from 41,990 rubles

iPad 9th generation. Great device for most users

Here’s our 2021 iPad review

Many Apple tablet buyers choose a simple and affordable device for home use. In this case, the appearance and bright color options are of no interest to anyone. Much more important is a run-in platform without any special flaws and a nice price.

It is for such users that the Cupertinians left a 2021 tablet in the current model range. This is an excellent 10.2-inch device in the old design with a button under the display.

✅ It’s the most affordable iPad right now, and it’s great for most everyday tasks.

⛔ Frustrating is not the latest processor A13 Bionic (as in line iPhone 11), 64 GB memory in the base, weak main camera 8MP f/2.4 and button design Home. If you can get used to the appearance, then the filling will last for a couple of years maximum. After that, the gadget will be difficult when working with new versions of iPadOS and demanding games.

Who is this tablet for? if you need an inexpensive iPad here and now, then the choice is obvious. If you are ready to pay extra or wait for the next updates of the line, you should not take this particular model.

Buy iPad 9th generation (2021): from 29 990 rubles

iPad 8th generation. Quite old and outdated gadget

Read our 2020 iPad review

On sale, you can still find an older tablet of the 8th generation, which went on sale in 2020. Outwardly, it does not differ from its successor, it has only a few minor changes under the hood.

To the point: What is the difference between iPad 9th generation (2021) and iPad 8th generation (2020)

It is worth noting the absence true toneolder processor A12 Bionic, 32 GB memory in the basic version and a simplified front camera.

✅ If you find such an iPad on sale, its only advantage will be the price.

⛔ Quite old chip and 32 GB memory will not be allowed to comfortably work with this tablet already now on iPadOS 16. In a year, the situation will become even worse.

Who is this tablet for? there is no objective reason to recommend this iPad for purchase at the end of 2022.

Of course, you should not consider earlier versions of the tablets of the base line. These are not the devices that can give comfortable operation and last several years without obvious restrictions.

Compact iPad mini

A few years ago, it seemed that the Cupertinos wanted to curtail the line of compact tablets so that they would not compete Plus and Max iPhone models. However, the fears turned out to be in vain, Cook and the company revived the minis and brought the line to a single appearance with other iPads.

At the moment, only two iPad mini can be found on sale, and on the official website, Cupertino offers only the latest generation of miniature tablets.

iPad mini 6th generation. Nice “minicom”, which will be updated soon

Read our 2021 iPad mini review

Back in last year’s lineup iPad mini transferred to a new design with support for all relevant features. The device received a port Type-C for charging and data synchronization, support Apple Pencil 2nd generation and current appearance with touch ID in the side button.

✅ Of the advantages, it is worth noting the current design, compact dimensions and, at the same time, a display with a diagonal 8.3″. The gadget runs on a powerful processor A15 BionicIt has 4 GB RAM.

⛔ The amount of storage in the basic version looks modest (only 64 GB), and there is still a high probability that already at the beginning of 2023, the Cupertinians will release the next generation of iPad mini with an updated filling.

Who is this tablet for? a great device if you need a compact tablet right now. If you can wait a bit, save up for the 7th generation iPad mini.

Buy iPad mini 6th generation (2021): from 55 990 rubles

iPad mini 5th generation. For a very narrow circle of people

Read our 2019 iPad mini review

The penultimate generation of the tablet in the old design with a button Home still found in reseller stores. The device is updated to iPadOS 16 and will receive the necessary software updates until at least next autumn.

Not the most demanding users will be able to find everything they need in the device.

✅ Compact size and high-quality 7.9-inch display with true tonethere is stylus support Apple Pencil 1st generation.

⛔ Old processor A12 Bionic, Lightning port for charging and synchronization, outdated design and mediocre camera.

Who is this tablet for? only for those who need an inexpensive and compact tablet at the same time.

Earlier models like iPad mini Of course, we do not consider the 4th generation, which was introduced already in 2015.

iPad Air

Now this is the strangest line of tablets, the purpose of which has long been unclear. Devices receive many chips from the line Probut at the same time they are still limited and compete with the basic models in terms of parameters.

iPad Air 5th generation. Excessive power for its line

The update of the “air” line this spring was very unexpected. Cupertino added a powerful processor to the Air Apple M1, which perfectly copes with the desktop OS and “adult” tasks on Apple computers. Then many were inspired and waited for something special from the summer presentation WWDC 2022.

Cupertino did not live up to expectations, and instead of a full-fledged macOS on the iPad, we saw a strange mode Stage manager.

There are no other significant differences between the new iPad Air and the previous generation tablet. Is it network support? 5G in the version with the cellular module.

✅ A good powerful tablet with a big reserve for the future. The most powerful chip for a line of mobile OS devices Apple M1 and 8 GB RAM will cope with all the tasks of the user for a long time. The main camera takes normal pictures and can shoot video in 4Kand the front camera received a wide viewing angle and a “in the spotlight” feature.

⛔ Again upsets everything 64 GB in the basic version of the tablet and not the most pleasant price tag for the device.

Who is this tablet for? a gadget for those who lack something in the basic 10th generation iPad. It may be support for newer stylus Apple Pencil 2nd generation with wireless charging, future-proof hardware or improved camera.

If you do not need all this, consider the basic line.

Buy iPad Air 5th generation (2022): from 64 990 rubles

iPad Air 4th generation. Good tablet with a strange price tag

This model is almost a complete copy of the recently released 10th generation iPad, but with a number of important differences. Old Air supports Apple Pencil 2nd generation Magic Keyboard and Smart Keyboard Folio. The device has a laminated display without an air gap. At the same time, the gadget has a weaker front camera and does not support 5G.

The tablets do not differ in terms of filling, processor generation, main camera module and dimensions. And here everything is decided by the price. The 4th generation iPad Air models are PCT-certified tablets imported into the country long ago. Many stores cannot sell devices at a loss and set the price tag for 2020 models at the level of new tablets imported under the parallel import program.

✅ Enough powerful and balanced iPad, which at the same time supports a wide range of original Apple accessories.

⛔ The tablet is hard to find on sale, and the price is frankly not encouraging.

Who is this tablet for? if you find this model cheaper than the new basic iPad, you can safely buy it, with an equal or more expensive price tag, it is preferable to take a novelty.

We will not consider earlier generations of tablets from the Air line. There are only models on old hardware with a button Home under the screen and medium settings.

iPad Pro

The most difficult line to analyze and select the appropriate model. Surprisingly, all iPad Pro models support the installation of the current operating system iPadOS 16including the very first professional tablet in 2015.

The hallmark of the line is the technology ProMotion with refresh rate support up to 120 Hz and 4 speakers for better sound in any orientation of the gadget.

iPad Pro 11″ 4th generation and iPad Pro 12.9″ 6th generation. Excess power in the world of tablets

Presented about a month ago, the generation of tablets received a minimum of useful innovations and differences. The main change was the transition to processors Apple M2. The power of the devices of the previous generation was enough even for the needs of the most demanding users, and this potential will not be revealed at all soon.

To the point: What is the difference between the new iPad Pro (2022) and the old iPad Pro (2021)

✅ The most top-end hardware among Apple gadgets. The power of the tablet is enough for at least 5-6 years.

⛔ Too few changes compared to its predecessor and overpriced under parallel import conditions.

Who is this tablet for? wait for these models on sale now is not worth it. The price tag on them will drop to an adequate limit only in a few months, and there will be at least a minimum of differences from previous iPad models already on sale.

Buy iPad Pro (2022): expected from 89,990 rubles

iPad Pro 11″ 3rd generation and iPad Pro 12.9″ 5th generation. The smart choice as a top solution

Read our iPad Pro 2021 review

The penultimate generation of “firmware” at the moment looks like a more balanced purchase in terms of price-power ratio. The potential of even this chip will be revealed only after the appearance of powerful professional programs for iPadOS.

Now the model has become a little cheaper, it is still possible to find it in the assortment of resellers.

✅ Good hardware (processor Apple M1), dual camera module (12MP width and 10MP ultrawide) + LiDAR. There is a high-speed Thunderbolt for data transfer and charging, as well as support 5G in models with a cellular module. The model practically does not differ from the autumn novelty.

⛔ Even with such parameters, the tablet is expensive. The price with a couple of accessories is comparable to the cost of basic Macbook Air.

Who is this tablet for? for those who want a top iPad here and now.

Buy iPad Pro (2021): from 79 990 rubles

iPad Pro 11″ 2nd generation and iPad Pro 12.9″ 4th generation. Peppy tablets that are hard to find on sale

Read our iPad Pro 2020 review

The 2020 lineup is also a welcome purchase for those who need a powerful and productive tablet. This generation is running A12Z Bionicwhich, although inferior to the line of chips M1/M2but able to solve all the tasks.

The set of cameras is practically the same as newer devices, only the front camera has a lower resolution. There is LiDAR and 128 GB memory in the basic version.

✅ Quite vigorous hardware that will be many times more productive than the new iPad models from the base line and previous generations of iPad Air.

⛔ In the older model on 12.9″ no support XDR. Devices are very difficult to find on sale, they are quickly dismantled after the presentation of each next generation of firmware.

Who is this tablet for? a very balanced solution, the cost of which will be at the level of the new basic iPad, but will be able to remain in the current line for much longer.

Can be considered as a purchase and older iPad Pro 11″ 1st generation and iPad Pro 12.9″ 4th generation. These are the first devices in the new frameless design with Face ID support. The devices were released in 2018 but are still worth the money.

Earlier firmware in the old design, although they support the installation of the latest OS updates, they can only be recommended for purchase in the secondary market.

The final model selection guide

Here are general recommendations for choosing an iPad based on the relevance of the gadget and the needs of the user.

iPad mini 2019 and iPad 2021. Only these two models in old design with button Home it is worth buying as the most affordable devices in regular and mini formats. If the base model can be considered a completely relevant device for the next year or two, then the “mini” of the previous generation should be considered only if you cannot save up for the latest generation.

Other Apple tablets with a button Home We do not recommend purchasing all lines at the end of 2022.

iPad mini 2021 and iPad 2022. These tablets are now the most relevant in terms of hardware and design. If you have the right budget and need a tablet right now, get the right size iPad.

However, both devices are recommended with reservations. The Minis are likely to be updated in early or mid-2023, and the base 10th-gen iPad is a bit pricey (alternatively, consider the older Air or Pro).

iPad Air 2022 and iPad Pro 2022. Devices with excess power that are difficult to load and reach their full potential. Due to the novelty and difficulties with the import of devices, the price of them is now too high.

We recommend purchasing such devices only for users who earn money with the help of the iPad, who choose a working tool for 5-6 years in advance.

iPad Air 2020 and iPad Pro 2021. These are the most balanced and powerful models to date.

The penultimate generation of Air can be considered as an alternative to the basic iPad of 2022, and last year’s “firmware” will cost less than the new one, but at the same time it will practically not be inferior to it in terms of capabilities and characteristics.

iPad Pro 2020 and iPad Pro 2018. These are two more older generations of professional tablets that are still great devices.

Both are made in a modern design with Face ID, have all the hallmarks of “firmware” and have enough power for several years of operation. But it will be very difficult to find such tablets on sale.

Older models of tablets of all lines are no longer recommended to buy.


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