New iPad Models: iPad Air & iPad mini with Retina Display – Features & Free Apps


Apple recently announced two new iPad models, an updated iPad mini and the next generation iPad called iPad Air. As expected, the iPad mini now has a Retina Display, with four times the screen resolution of the previous-generation iPad mini. The mini also has Apple’s new A7 chip, with up to four times the CPU speed and up to eight times the graphics performance of the old mini. The 10 hours of battery life is the same as the previous version. Wi-Fi performance is also improved, with two antennas and MIMO (multiple-input multiple-output) technology for faster connections and better download speeds. The frontside FaceTime Camera is now FaceTime HD and the backside iSight camera offers improved photos and videos. There is little difference in the weight or thickness between old and new models. The iPad Mini with Retina Display is available with 16GB, 32GB, 64GB and 128GB of storage for apps and data.

The iPad Air also gets the more powerful A7 processor, improved Wi-Fi system and similar 10 hour battery life. However, this latest generation iPad now weighs just 1 pound or 469 g, making it 28% lighter than the previous model, a noticeable difference. The iPad Air is also 25% thinner and the bezel (frame) surrounding the screen is smaller. The iPad Air is available with 16GB, 32GB, 64GB and 128GB of storage.

The iPad Air is available now and the new iPad mini model should be available by the end of November. Apple also kept two older models of the iPad in the mix, the iPad 2 and the original mini. Both come in 16GB only, Wi-Fi or Wi-Fi + Cellular. All new iPads include Apple’s iLife and iWork apps. That’s iPhoto, iMovie, GarageBand, Pages, Numbers, and Keynote for free. You can see specifications and compare all the Apple tablets here.


About Andy Brovey

Dr. Andy Brovey, The Portable Prof, has over 30 years experience in educational technology, including teaching, administration and professional development. In 2007, Apple Inc. recognized his work and named him an Apple Distinguished Educator. Andy now runs a professional development business, working on site and online to help others make sense and make use of digital tools. He started this iPad Academy website shortly after the first iPad went on sale to help others become more comfortable and competent with the iPad, in person and online. Click Here for Video Lessons