Ten years back, Apple released the first iPad. Available in one size , with three storage options , a Wi-Fi only version was launched first, having a Wi-Fi and cellular model following soon after. At that time, this ground-breaking device was rivaling netbooks for primacy within the lightweight/portable device market. It didn’t take long for the iPad, and the tablet generally, to flourish.

Over time, Apple has iterated the iPad many times, with nearly two dozen different models in lots of sizes.

It used to be simple to choose an iPad. When there were only a few models available, all you required to choose was the colour and how much storage you desired. But everything has changed. Nowadays, you've multiple options to choose from, each with varying configurations; it's not so simple to know right off the bat which iPad is the best for you.

If you would like an iPad today, you will find four different models, each with various feature sets. You will find five different sizes, and also the base price differs from as little as $329 to as much as $999 . You can choose models that provide Wi-Fi, or both cellular and Wi-Fi, and there are as many as five color options, with respect to the model.

Based in your needs, can you be sure which iPad you need to get? In this article, I will consider the different iPad models and recommend which iPad is the best for you, depending on how you plan to use it.

You focus on your iPad

A couple of months ago, I'd have asserted with a large amount of work on your iPad, you definitely want the iPad Pro; either the 11\” model or the 12.9\” version. These models offer Apple's Smart Connector, which lets you use the Smart Keyboard Folio or even the new Magic Keyboard, making these device great for both typing and tapping. Unfortunately, these keyboards aren’t cheap. The Smart Keyboard Folio costs $179 and $199, for the 11" and 12.9" models respectively, and also the Magic Keyboard is a whopping $299 or $349. However the larger iPad boasts impressive qualities, and may replace a laptop: It's lots of room that you should work comfortably, with text, spreadsheets, graphics, and much more.

With the iPad Pro, you may also use the second-generation Apple Pencil . This stylus is excellent if you draw, take notes, or edit photos. The first-generation Apple Pencil is compatible with an array of iPads , also it costs $99. The Apple Pencil is actually an amazing tool; with a lot of work on your iPad, from drawing to text editing, you need to get one, particularly with iPadOS 14 and it’s new Scribble feature, which lets you enter text with the Pencil anywhere.

If you’re wondering if the iPad can replace your laptop, see this article. We checked out the new features in iPadOS 13, and options for external keyboards, which can make an iPad an engaging choice for people who need to focus on a tight schedule.

You want an iPad that does everything

In September 2021, Apple announced an update towards the iPad Air, which ships in October. When this device was first released in 2021, it had been thinner and lighter than other models, making it a fascinating, if slightly limited, alternative. The new iPad Air inherits the name of this series, but little more. Its total body is different: her straight sides of the iPad Pro. It’s also got Apple’s latest, most powerful processor, the A14, and therefore it has more power because the iPad Pro.

At 10.9", it’s almost the same size as the smaller iPad Pro . But it’s close enough to allow use of the Magic Keyboard. Because the Touch ID sensor is within the power button, the bezels around the screen are smaller. Starting at $599, it’s $200 less than the similar-sized Pro model. There are several differences: two speakers rather than four; a less sophisticated camera; storage options only increase to 256 GB; and the display doesn’t have the very best features, such as ProMotion technology. However this iPad really hits the sweet spot: it balances price and capabilities very well, and you obtain a choice of five colors. This really is my recommendation for most of us who wish to make use of an iPad for work, but don’t need the larger 12.9" size.

You take photos or videos with your iPad

Some people think that capturing with an iPad is gauche, but many individuals get it done. Should you carry your iPad around with you, and wish to take photos, the most recent iPad Pro models are for you. With similar camera system because the iPhone 11 – wide-angle and ultra wide-angle cameras – the iPad Pro is really a compelling device for photos and video. For some people who require to shoot videos professionally – such as to demonstrate houses for sale or to create video tutorials – using in iPad using its large display, plus a tripod or gimbal, is a great option. The wide-angle camera comes with an f/1.8 aperture, which makes it excellent for low-light pics and vids, and also the ultra wide-angle camera has an f/2.4 lens. Both models shoot 4K video, in addition to slow-motion at as much as 240 fps. The iPad Air only has a single wide-angle camera, but it’s got an f/1.8 aperture, and can record the same 4K and slow-motion video as the iPad Pro.

You play iOS games

If like to play iOS games – and I don't mean solitaire or crossword puzzles – then you should probably choose between the iPad Pro and iPad Air. These models have desktop speed, and the graphics are fantastic. Be aware that some games take up a lot of storage, however with the base iPad Pro models with 128 GB, you may not have to pay the Apple tax for more. However, should you choose need a lot of storage, the iPad Air is limited to 256 GB, whereas you can find an iPad Pro with 1 TB.

You need plenty of storage

You may travel a lot, and use your iPad to carry around files for work, or movies and television shows to watch on the highway. If so, you need lots of storage. Times have changed since the first iPad, which came with as little as 16 GB storage. Now, the iPad Pro starts at 128 GB and is available with as much as 1 TB. The iPad Air starts at 64 GB, with an option for 256 GB. And also the iPad offers 32 or 128 GB.

You want a budget iPad

Apple’s naming from the iPad models is confusing at best. Your current choices are the next:

  • iPad Pro 12.9" – starting at $999
  • iPad Pro 11" – starting at $799
  • iPad Air – starting at $599
  • iPad mini – starting at $399
  • iPad – starting at $329

If all you need is a basic iPad, and have no special demands for speed or storage, the ten.2" iPad 8th generation, that was updated in September 2021, is a superb deal. Since 2021, Apple continues to be releasing these iPad models at an affordable price of $329. With 32 GB storage, this iPad is sufficient for many needs, however, you can bump that to 128 GB.

Note that you could find refurbished iPads on Apple's website, usually discounted around 15%, therefore if prices are key, you may want to take a look at that option too.

You watch videos in your iPad

In recent times, using the great retina displays on the latest iPads, I’ve come to enjoying watching movies and TV shows in bed. I currently have a 2021 11" iPad Pro: the display is crisp and responsive, and the four speakers sound good enough that I no more use headphones, a minimum of if I'm watching alone. There's a sort of faux multichannel audio on these units, however it doesn't sound artificial; it can make movies sound vibrant.

If you want to watch videos a lot, you might like the larger 12.9" model, but can also be substantially heavier than the 11"

The new iPad Air is also a great candidate, if you would like something around that 11" size. But it only has two speakers, not four, therefore the sound won’t be as impressive.

One note: when I watch videos, I've found an iPad with white bezels to be distracting. The iPad and iPad mini would be the only models that provide this method, when you purchase silver or gold bodies. The iPad Pro and iPad Air offer only black bezels.

You need cellular access

You're in luck: all current iPad models provide a cellular option. It's not cheap, though; add $130 to $150 in the US so that you can access data on the go. For those who have an iPhone, and your carrier enables you to generate a personal hotspot, that's a great way to get data for your iPad or laptop when you're on the highway, so you can steer clear of the expense of the iPad, and the additional mobile contract.

You want the benefit of Face ID

Only the iPad Pro models offer Face ID, which is very convenient individuals use your iPad a lot. Other current designs include Touch ID, and these security features allow all models to benefit from Apple Pay. New with the 2021 iPad Air, the Touch ID sensor is in the power button on the top edge of the unit. Which means that there’s more space for a bigger screen with smaller bezels.

Of course, if you are using your iPad when you’re out and about, Touch ID may be easier now, within this era of mask wearing. If so, the brand new iPad Air might be what you would like.

You want the tiniest iPad

There are five sizes in the iPad products: the 12.9\” iPad Pro, the 11\” iPad Pro; the ten.9" iPad Air; the ten.2" iPad; and the 7.9\” iPad mini. If you want the largest one, it's clear that you simply should choose. The sizes of these two middle iPad models are similar enough that they don’t matter. But when you need to do want a light, compact iPad, the iPad mini is a great choice. It's a great display and it is quick enough for most needs. I've the most recent iPad mini, and that i consider it to be a sort of "paperback" form of my 11" iPad Pro.

It’s worth noting that the iPad mini hasn’t been upgraded since March 2021. It’s unlikely that Apple will abandon this model, because it is popular in stores as a payment terminal. I've got a feeling that it'll become like the ipod itouch, updated occasionally to keep hardware compatibility with iPadOS, however i doubt we’ll see many new features on the iPad mini.

You use FaceTime and Skype a lot

It’s only recently that Apple has upped the resolution from the front cameras so that they look good enough to make use of ofter for video conferencing. Which days, more and more people are using fraxel treatments with friends, families, and for work. The iPad Pro, the iPad Air, and the iPad mini have the ability to 7Mp front cameras; only the plain $329 iPad continues to have a schlocky 1.2-megapixel cameras, which was long the conventional on iPads. If you are planning to use your iPad often for video chats, think how you'll look to others using the cheaper front camera.

So, Which iPad Should You Choose?

If you want a new iPad, you can spend between $329 for that iPad to around $1,649 for that 12.9" iPad Pro with 1 TB storage and cellular. And you'll want to add a keyboard: count $349 for the forthcoming Magic Keyboard for your model, which makes it a $2,000 tablet.

Obviously, anyone choosing this kind of expensive configuration is really a professional using the device for demanding tasks, as well as for such people the cost is justified. However for most users, the ideal iPad comes in at a significantly lower price point. I’d not recommend the basic iPad , unless you’re only planning on using it for that bare minimum. Not too it can’t handle lots of games, video, and also the usual web surfing and messaging, however it may have more difficulty with demanding apps. Using the iPad Air, at $599, you receive a much better display, the latest, fastest processor, along with a device that risks to remain compatible for extended as Apple iterates iPadOS.

Also, take into account the longevity of the iPad. This is a device that generally lasts much longer that the iPhone, a minimum of if you’re not using it for work. I have an iPad mini 4, released in late 2021, in my kitchen, where I use it to look at the news when I’m eating breakfast, and also to display recipes when I cook. While it’s adequate of these limited use cases, it’s sluggish. But we also have an iPad Air 2, from late 2021, in my household, which fits fine, and will probably continue to do so for an additional few years. Both of these are the oldest devices which are suitable for iPadOS 14, however they will still function when they can’t update to another version of iPadOS. iPads are reliable devices, and it’s worth taking into consideration that whatever iPad you purchase might be around for some time.

No iPad is ideal for everyone. You might find that a few of the above use cases suit your needs, yet others don't. You may want the features of the biggest iPad Pro, although not the cost. So consider all your choices to determine which model comes closest to your requirements.