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34 of 34 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars iPad Air... Lighter, Thinner and Faster
Apple really know how to work an audience thanks to their marketing hype and by limiting supplies at launch date. Thankfully they are now readily available and prices are creeping down.
I am no Apple iOS diehard fan. In fact I have several android tablets (including the Nexus 7, which I love). Yet there's no denying that the iPad has revolutionised the computer...
Published 7 months ago by Antoine Camilleri

versus
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Dead on Arrival
Very prompt delivery, effectively next-day. However, the iPad refused to power up despite various attempts using different methods including reset. Left on charge for 24 hours but suspect that it did not accept the charge. To be returned
Published 6 months ago by Downtonian


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34 of 34 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars iPad Air... Lighter, Thinner and Faster, 15 April 2014
By 
Antoine Camilleri - See all my reviews
(TOP 10 REVIEWER)    (HALL OF FAME REVIEWER)   
Apple really know how to work an audience thanks to their marketing hype and by limiting supplies at launch date. Thankfully they are now readily available and prices are creeping down.
I am no Apple iOS diehard fan. In fact I have several android tablets (including the Nexus 7, which I love). Yet there's no denying that the iPad has revolutionised the computer industry by triggering the tablet era.

This review focuses solely on the iPad Air.

Having owned two other iPads: iPad 1 and iPad 3, I am no novice to the iPad, and have followed the incremental upgrades since it was first introduced .... just 4 years ago!

When my iPad Air finally arrived (had it on pre-order for several months) I thought that the store had made a mistake and got me the iPad mini instead!
I opened the usual premium Apple packaging and was greeted by a lovely, super slim and lightweight gem of a tablet. The side bezels are so much thinner too, no wonder it could be mistaken for a Mini at first glance.

The iPad Air is no incremental upgrade, but a total redesign around the existing iPad 4 screen. (albeit offering better viewing angles)

It really is a pity that I had to buy a protective case, which covers the beautifully crafted aluminium body. Yet it means that your investment will still look like new for years.

------------------------------------------
Case options: Skip this part if not interested.

When it comes to cases there is quite a choice. I call these necessary evils, yet one should not skimp on a quality case offering the best protection possible.

I have the original Apple, Invision and the Veo cases for the iPad Air. I cannot comment on cases I do not own which might prove to be actually better.
They weigh 148.7g, 208.5g and 230.7g respectively.
The Apple case is expensive, and the volume and sleep buttons are a nuisance to operate as they are covered in the thick premium leather. The other cases offer easy access to the buttons. However this case offers the best protection and looks great. It takes a lot of patience to remove this cover once it is in place.
The Invision is a very cheap case and a best seller. It looks sturdy and the stitching is top notch, yet I do not particularly like the shiny finish. The iPad is held in place by 4 corner tabs which tend to pop out of place fairly easily.
The Veo is probably the nearest to the Apple as far as looks go. It comes in a mat finish and the iPad is held in place via a plastic strip along the right and 4 corner tabs.
--------------------------------------------

DOES THE iPad LIVE UP TO THE HYPE?

A quick answer is "Yes"! The new zippy 64 bit A7 processor and crisp "Retina display" are the best I've seen on any 10" tablet so far! And even though it sports the same display as the iPad 4, the viewing angle is far superior, probably thanks to the closer proximity of the display to the scratch proof glass.

The Apps further contribute to making this the best iPad to date, as they have been optimized to take full advantage of the powerful 64bit processor. These include *iPhoto, *iMovie, *Numbers, *Pages and *Keynote which are bundled for free!

Apps available for the iPad are generally of a very high standard and virtually virus free. There are various reasons for this:
○ iPad is also targeted for professional environments
○ Stable and reliable iOS platform
○ Applications are only available through the App Store, thus guaranteeing income to the developer.

Pros:
+ Blazing fast, low consumption A7 (64bit) processor. The fastest to date
+ Premium build quality with ever so stylish looks thanks to the precision engineered aluminium housing
+ 30% lighter than iPad4, weighing only 469g for Wi-Fi, and 478g Wi-Fi + Cellular versions
+ Retina display. Great colour saturation producing stunning images
+ iWork and iLife software included for free
+ Vast choice of apps that can mimic laptop/desktop programs
+ Awesome battery life. No other tablet manufacturer can match as yet
+ Is widely used in the Aviation industry by pilots*: This gives the iPad the ultimate seal of approval for reliability, performance and stability.

*Jeppesen, the leading Airline chart manufacturer, has been officially endorsed by EASA (European Aviation Safety Agency) to provide digital navigation charts on the iPad for use in flight decks by pilots, and is being used by major airlines. This is a first, and truly revolutionary!

Cons:
- Proprietary hardware required. ie: Bluetooth GPS, Airprint printers..
- No expandable memory
- No touch ID

I would have loved to see an improved version of the iPhone's touch ID.

------------------------------------------------------

Probably the most difficult task is choosing the version which best suits your needs and budget:

I will first start with the common denominator. All flavours offer the same A7 chip, retina display and Wi-Fi.

So the options are colour, storage size and cellular:
○ Beauty is in the eye of the beholder, yet I do suggest a side by side hands on comparison.
○ Given the fast processor I would say go for the largest available storage you can afford. This might easily be a laptop alternative, given the new 128GB SSD version.
♦ Many think that cellular versions only offer data. This version also sports a GPS chip which works as good as the best GPS receivers. So this has to be taken into consideration when factoring the price difference.

Highly recommend to anyone seeking a versatile, fast and reliable alternative to a laptop.

I hope you find this review helpful. Any comments or queries are welcome, and I will try my best to address.
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747 of 763 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Not sure which iPad to buy? This might help!, 27 Dec 2013
By 
John Ryan "One man and his Kat" (London, UK) - See all my reviews
(TOP 10 REVIEWER)    (HALL OF FAME REVIEWER)    (REAL NAME)   
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
While this is NOT the absolute latest iPad Air available, (an upgraded "iPad Air 2" was announced in October 2014), it's still one of the slimmest and lightest "tablet computers" available, and a fantastic bargain. It's so beautifully easy to use (my one year old granddaughter loves playing with it), it's almost doesn't feel like a computer at all.

A word of warning - this review is written for people who've never owned an iPad before - and are wondering what all the fuss is about.

If however you want to compare models (including the very latest one), search again for "iPad".

Just what's all the fuss about?
--------------------------------------
I used to own a laptop for work, and (very occasionally), it'd sit on my lap on the sofa, and I'd use it for pleasure (eMail, watching films or playing the odd game). Then I bought my first iPad, and the laptop became redundant, a boring "work device". Hard to explain, but the fact the iPad is so small and light, and you navigate around with your finger by pointing and gently swiping the screen makes the whole experience a lot easier - a lot more fun.

Even my most "technophobe" of friends have been won over.

It's incredibly simple and easy to use (it only has one main button), and everyone from my one year old granddaughter to my 85 year old dad have taken to without problems. It's size and shape also support using it like a book (literally to read a book or web page), but you can also watch TV and films.

Personally I'm also paranoid about my password getting "hacked", and someone running up a huge Amazon bill or buying stuff with my credit card on eBay. Well one of the benefits of the iPad (and iPhone) is it's "almost impossible" to get a virus - one of the most common ways to get hacked. This doesn't mean you shouldn't use strong passwords, (both Sony and Adobe got hacked), but it's reassuring to leave the Windows world behind.

Finally, I love the way these devices (iPad, iPhone, Apple TV, Apple Mac), increasingly work together. The fact you can start a Pages document on your Mac and edit it on your iPad, or take photos on the iPhone, and in seconds see them on the iPad or Mac and display them on the Apple TV.

Equally, you don't "need" to buy into the Apple dream. I also run a Google Nexus 5 (Android) phone, and a PC. Lots of programs (see below) can be used on the iPhone, iPad, Android and PC.

The thing about the iPad is, "it just works".

FAQ - Frequently Asked Questions
==========================
Q: Is this covered by Warranty ?
A: Yes. Full 12 month Apple warranty, and 90 days free technical support. You can also extend the warranty with "AppleCare+" for £79 a year provided to take out the cover within 60 days of buying your iPad. This includes accidental damage insurance (up to two incidents per year subject to a £39 excess).

Q: Why are these cheaper on Amazon than at the Apple store? What's the catch?
A: No catch. You can buy in person from the Apple store (including free engraving), or from John Lewis, and get a free 2 year John Lewis warranty. Alternatively buy from Amazon with a 30 day NO QUESTIONS ASKED return policy. If you find this item is NOT as described, (eg. does not have a UK plug), return it immediately, report the issue to Amazon, and write a critical review.

Q: Is this a UK or USA model of the iPad?
A: UK model. It is illegal to sell an electrical device in the UK without a UK plug or a foreign plug and adapter. If it doesn't have a UK plug you're entitled to a refund. Otherwise there's absolutely no difference.

Q: Should I buy the Cellular option?
A: You almost certainly don't "need" to - as ever it always depends. Many iPads never leave home, and even when they do you can store your videos/music on the device or connect to a coffee bar hotspot to get online. If you have a smartphone (eg. Android or iPhone) you can set up a "personal hot spot" or "tethering" and use your data plan on your phone. This effectively allows you to connect a WIFI only iPad to the internet via your mobile phone while you're out and about. On an Android phone go to Setup --> Tethering & portable hotspot. On on iPhone go to Settings --> Personal Hotspot, and set up a personal WIFI network from your phone. Try it now, but be aware it may be an optional extra dependent upon your mobile phone plan.

Q: Is this the latest iPad?
A: No. It was replaced by a newer version, the "iPad Air 2" in October 2015 - do a search on Amazon and compare prices and reviews.

Q: How much storage aka "disk space" do I need?
A: It depends. If intend to buy lots of Apps or store lots of videos and photos then go for the 32Gb, 64Gb or even the massive 128Gb. If it's your first iPad, and you'll mainly be using it for accessing web pages and reading the odd book, then 16Gb will be fine. Be aware, you cannot increase the storage - you can't add an SD card.

Q: Is it easy to set up?
A: Yes - very easy. Be sure to be near a WIFI connection, and the iPad will carefully take you through the steps needed to set it up. No, there's very little in the way of an instruction manual - which is a testament to the simplicity of this device. It's so easy to use most people find they don't need one. However, there are lots of books available on Amazon. Just search for "iPad" under books if you're concerned.

Q: Does it have a USB connection?
A: No. This means you can't connect just any old device, but also means you can't accidentally get a virus. To help support this, all Apps (programs) are available "over the air" (downloaded from the Apple App Store) and vetted by Apple. You can buy a cable which means you can plug in an SD Card to download photos. Search Amazon for "lightning to sd card reader" to find these. Apple provide a free back-up service for upto 5Gb of data (or 20Gb for 79p per month). Just plug in your iPad to re-charge, and it will automatically be backed up to the Apple servers (the "cloud").

Q: Do I need a computer?
A: No. All you really need is a WIFI connection. Whether an iPad could replace your laptop is another question. You can type (and print) letters, read eMails, view web pages, view photos or watch videos and listen to music on an iPad. You can even attach an external keyboard and type entire documents (this review was partly written on an iPad Air on a train). You can run MS Office or use the free Apple versions (Pages and Numbers). Personally, I find I use my iPad 90% of the time, only using a laptop to connect to the office. Whether you can get by with only an iPad is your decision based upon your needs.

Q: Does it run Microsoft Office?
A: Yes. And guess what? It's now absolutely FREE on the iPad. Word, Excel and Powerpoint. You now only need pay for the PC/Mac version.

Q: Can I print from the iPad?
A: Yes. Provided your running a relatively modern printer with a WIFI connection you can.

Q: Can I read books, watch films and listen to music on an iPad?
A: Yes. That's what I use it for most of the time. Kindle or Apple books work beautifully. You can rent/buy films from Apple, Amazon and lots of others. You can watch catch up services (BBC iPlayer, ITV and Channel 4). You can load your music (MP3 files) on an existing computer to iTunes
and sync them with the iPad or stream unlimited music from music sites including Spotify. Finally, you can stream video to your TV using a set-top box from Apple (TV), Amazon (Fire) or Google (Chromecast)

Q: Do you work for Apple or Amazon?
A: A fair question that nobody has yet been brave enough to ask. No. Neither. I love the iPad, and I'm a great fan of Amazon's customer service. Fantastic technology and great service at a terrific price. What's not to get excited about? ;-)

How about Apps?
--------------------------
Firstly, an App, is a small "application" (a program) that runs on your iPad, and there's literally thousands available from the "App Store", with the most important ones (web browser, mail, music player, word processor, spreadsheet etc) are pre-installed or free to download.

Many apps cost $1 - or 69p in real money, and loads are free (frequently advertising funded with the option to "add on" stuff - but beware you can run up a huge bill).

Here's my favourites:-

* Mailbox. Incredibly slick mail app (or use the built in Apple App) (Free)
* Photo & iPhoto. Built in apps to take/view/edit photos (Free)
* Skype. Chat to the family for free using a video call (Free)
* BBC iPlayer. Great way to catch up on BBC TV. (Free).
* tv24.co.uk. TV Listings. See what you're missing on TV (Free)
* TVCatchup. Watch real time TV (the Freeview stations anyway). (Free)
* Netflix. For £5 a month watch a huge collection of films online. (Free)
* Evernote. Write and organise notes. Edit them on your Android, iPhone, iPad, PC or Mac (Free)
* DropBox. Access your files, documents and photos on Android, iPhone, iPad, PC or Mac. (Free)
* Tune In Radio. Listen to 1,000s of radio stations world-wide - or listen to Radio 4 like I do (£2.40)
* Spotify. Stream music for £5 a month (or free with ads). Brilliant! (Free)
* eBay. Buy and sell your stuff online. (Free)
* Garage Sale. Fantastic way to produce professional looking sales on eBay. (£2.99)
* Rightmove. Search for your next Flat or House or just gape at daft prices (Free)
* Zite. Online web magazine that learns what you like. Terrific! (Free)
* Movies by Flixter. Read reviews of films on cinema and DVD. (Free)
* Kindle. Read your books from Amazon Kindle bookstore. (Free)
* QuickOffice. Edit Word, Excel and Powerpoint documents (Free)
* Pages, Numbers and Keynote. Apple's version of MS Office. Edit/save documents in Word, Excel andPowerpoint format. (Free)
* MS Office. £80 a year subscription for 3-4 PCs, Macs or an iPad or "read only" for free. (Free)

Of course you could also use it to read web pages (my wife loves the Daily Mail Online), or playing amazing games like "Football Manager" (£2.99) or "Cut the Rope" (69p). It's a wonderful surprise having come from a PC background to find the most expensive game in the top 100 cost £6.99 and most cost £2.99 or less.

Personally, I tend to use it for Mail, watching TV (BBC iPlayer, Netflix), or shopping using the built in browser - Safari. Having said that, I'm writing this review (using an external keyboard) on Pages - so it can (with a stretch) do "most" of what you can do on a PC or Mac.

Which model should I buy?
----------------------------------
I can't comment about Android tablets (apart from the Google Nexus 7 which is well regarded), but in terms of the Apple tablet line-up in order of cost:-

1. Avoid the Apple iPad 2, it's a relatively old model, under-powered and with a lower resolution screen.
2. iPad 3rd or 4th Generation. Not quite as light, fast or thin, but if you're on a budget (and who isn't), a great alternative.
2. iPad mini is a lovely tablet. A 7.9 inch screen and astonishingly light and remarkably thin - it feels like a light-weight book.
3. iPad mini with retina screen. Again 7.9 inch screen, but with the blazingly fast A7 chip, and a "retina" (high definition) screen. Worth the upgrade from the "mini".
4. iPad Air. Much larger screen size (9.7 inches - doesn't sound much but it makes a huge difference). Same fast (A7) chip as the Mini with Retina - the latest and fastest full size iPad available.

If you want a small tablet (eg. to read one handed on the train), I'd go for the iPad Mini Retina or (at a push), the original mini.

In terms of a full size tablet, the Air is the fastest, lightest and thinnest, followed by the 3rd or 4th Generation iPad - and all are available on Amazon. It depends upon your budget.

What are the Optional add-ons?
----------------------------------------
Well, firstly I'd recommend you drop by the Apple Store, John Lewis or Curry's, and handle the iPad Mini, and iPad Air. Once you've decided upon the "physical size" then your options are around memory size and cellular option.

Memory: Important! Once bought, you can't add memory (space for apps, films, books, photos etc). Only you can decide, and if you think you'll need the space, then buy the bigger model. If it's your first iPad and you're unlikely to store lots of photos or videos, then 16g will be fine.

Cellular: Allows you to connect to the internet while you're out and about. This will add an additional £100 to the price and means you can slip in a mobile phone SIM card. This means (£7-15 a month on contract), you can access the internet on the move. Alternatively, you can opt for the WIFI option, and use it at home or at at "hot spot" (eg. Starbucks, most rail stations and hotels etc).

Note: If you have a "smartphone" (Android, iPhone or whatever), you may have the option of "tethering" your WIFI iPad to your smartphone. Effectively, this means using your smartphone's data connection to connect to the internet, and broadcast a local WIFI signal. You connect your iPad to this (password protected) signal, and then use your WIFI based iPad to connect when you're out and about.

Sounds difficult, but even tying your shoe-laces was difficult first time. If you need advice, drop by the Apple store or search You Tube and I'm sure you'll find some help.

Be aware, you may need to pay extra for tethering (eg. Three charge £5 a month extra), but a great option to avoid the additional cost of the "Cellular" option if you've aready got a smartphone.

Personally I'd buy (and indeed did), the 16Gb iPad Air WIFI, but these are key decisions.

Do I need anything else?
-------------------------------
Most people (me included) buy a cover. Apple (and now hundreds of others) make a "smart-cover" which automatically shuts down the iPad when you close it, and switches it on when you open it. There's versions which cover the back, or just the screen. Apple charge from £35 to £65 for their (admittedly) high quality fabric or leather covers, but there's many available from £10. Be aware, you do get what you pay for, but "Swees Ultraslim" (about £10), has excellent reviews on Amazon.

Personally,I think it's a pity to cover the beautiful aluminium industrial design of the iPad with a cover - but if you've spent literally hundreds of pounds, you'll want to protect it from scrapes and bangs.

I also invested in a keyboard (£25-80), as I tend to write a lot of mails and documents (remember it comes with a word processor). I'd recommend the Logitech Ultra Thin iPad Air Case with Keyboard - Space Grey. Be aware, a keyboard is strictly optional unless you want to use your iPad as a proper laptop.

You can also buy a rechargeable wireless bluetooth speaker. It's a fantastic way to boost the sound quality and volume from an tablet, phone or PC. I'd recommend the JBL Flip (from £49), the Bose Soundlink Mini (£169) or the top end Bose Soundlink III (£259). Personally, I listen to music (Spotify or iTunes) or the radio on my wireless speakers every day. It's just brilliant.

Finally, if you have another Apple device (eg. an iPhone, Apple TV or Mac) you'll find these work together beautifully. For example, you can create a reminder on your iPad and it appears on your iPhone. Equally, photos taken on your iPhone appear on your iPad, and you can send music or videos from iPad, iPhone or Mac to an Apple TV.

Some people think this "locks you in" - but it's your choice.

What's great about the iPad Air?
-------------------------------------------
* Lighter (30%) and thinner than the previous version (469g from 650g)
* Even faster A7 chip. Blazingly fast!
* Improved sound (compared to the iPad 4)
* Software including
+ iMovie - edit and publish home made movies
+ Numbers - Fully functional Excel for the iPad
+ Pages - Word processor
+ GarageBand - Play a piano or a drum kit
+ iPhoto - Edit and organise your photos

What's not so great?
--------------------------
* The change in physical size means you'll need a new keyboard or replacement cover if you're upgrading from a previous model
* Pity Apple didn't include the "touch ID" to secure your passwords - but I'm pleased to say they did starting with the "iPad Air 2" and the new iPad Mini

Overall Opinion
---------------------
It's hard to believe the iPad version 1 was released in January 2010, and there's a huge raft of "me too" tablet computers to choose from, but the Apple iPad Air is still the one to beat. As "Which?" magazine put it - "...the best tablet we've ever tested. Apple packs a beautiful screen and lightning fast processor into a slimmer-than-ever shell, and battery life is very impressive".

Yes, there are cheaper Android based alternatives, but the quality, design and beauty of this tablet just sets it apart. If it were a car it'd be a top of the range Mercedes or a BMW 5i.

Highly Recommended. Buy it.
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406 of 415 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars I love my iPad. This review explains why..., 29 Dec 2013
By 
John Ryan "One man and his Kat" (London, UK) - See all my reviews
(TOP 10 REVIEWER)    (HALL OF FAME REVIEWER)    (REAL NAME)   
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: Apple IPad Air, MD788LL/A 16GB, Wifi, 9.7 in LCD (White with Silver) (Personal Computers)
Apologies if this review appears a duplicate. Amazon have aggregated products and reviews appear to be duplicated. You can see the full review (hopefully) at the top of the list.
Also take a look at the latest iPad - search for "iPad Air 2"
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190 of 194 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Very light, fast and beautiful. Is it the best tablet for you?, 29 Dec 2013
By 
John Ryan "One man and his Kat" (London, UK) - See all my reviews
(TOP 10 REVIEWER)    (HALL OF FAME REVIEWER)    (REAL NAME)   
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
Apologies. It seems Amazon has aggregated products and reviews, and therefore this review simply appears as a duplicate.
You can see my review of the iPad above.
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303 of 311 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Very light, fast and beautiful. Is it the best tablet for you?, 29 Dec 2013
By 
John Ryan "One man and his Kat" (London, UK) - See all my reviews
(TOP 10 REVIEWER)    (HALL OF FAME REVIEWER)    (REAL NAME)   
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
Apologies. It seems Amazon has aggregated products and reviews, and therefore this review simply appears as a duplicate.
You can see my review of the iPad above.
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319 of 331 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great tablet, 6 Nov 2013
By 
R. D. Pearson "Rich 100" (UK) - See all my reviews
(TOP 1000 REVIEWER)    (REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Apple IPad Air, MD788LL/A 16GB, Wifi, 9.7 in LCD (White with Silver) (Personal Computers)
My family and I liked our iPad 4 so much the only problem was sharing it among 5 people so I decided to get another iPad but waited for the "Air" so can now compare side by side.

Weight savings are very noticeable with the Air at 469g compared to the 652g of the iPad 4. That's 28% lighter. The difference feels more pronounced though because in truth the iPad 4 was a tad too heavy. The Air is much more manageable in the hand and feels somehow more like half the weight. The difference is actually between "a little too heavy" and "quite light". The Air is nearly 2mm thinner and whilst this is pleasing I think the weight drop is the more noticeable change.

When working off the same wireless network, same distance away, the Air opens websites slightly quicker, perhaps up to 1 second quicker. That is not a lot but when surfing it speeds things up somewhat. If you stream an HD video then not only does it open faster but the buffer on the Air establishes a greater margin than on the 4. In other words the Air is less likely to stall and more able to stream higher definition content.

The speakers on the Air are noticeably better. They are less tinny in general and have more bass than the 4 although neither are exactly Hi Fi.

The Air looks smaller than previous iPads as when in landscape, the outer upper and lower border is narrower making it 16mm smaller than the iPad 4. Same actual screen size though.

The screen images are the same quality on the Air and the 4. Same screen so not very surprising. I cannot detect a snappier or smoother response, both screens seem to be the same. Cameras appear to be the same also.

About a year ago after much musing and hesitation I bought an iPad 4. This has been in high demand with all family members ever since and is great. The Air is even better and will no doubt get heavy use. If you are wondering about needing a tablet and which one to get I would say that either the 4 or the Air are great tablets and are fun and useful tools. I tend to use MS Windows for general computing but somehow Apple has definitely won me over on the tablet front. I am actually surprised by my own statement at some level. I would recommend you try.

The downsides are the lack of Adobe Flash and camera flash, the ridiculous cost of extra storage and no SD/micro SD slot and the fact that the charger for the Air is not compatible with the 4. Personally I can overlook those issues but for the sake of balance they are worth a mention.

These are my initial impressions and I may add once I have played with the Air some more.
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66 of 68 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Very light, fast and beautiful. Is it the best tablet for you?, 29 Dec 2013
By 
John Ryan "One man and his Kat" (London, UK) - See all my reviews
(TOP 10 REVIEWER)    (HALL OF FAME REVIEWER)    (REAL NAME)   
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
Apologies. It seems Amazon has aggregated products and reviews, and therefore this review simply appears as a duplicate.
You can see my review of the iPad above.
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74 of 77 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars iPad Air .... Stylish, Sleek and Blazingly Fast, 14 Feb 2014
By 
Antoine Camilleri - See all my reviews
(TOP 10 REVIEWER)    (HALL OF FAME REVIEWER)   
Apple really know how to work an audience thanks to their marketing hype and by limiting supplies at launch date. Thankfully they are now readily available and prices are creeping down.
I am no Apple iOS diehard fan. In fact I have several android tablets (including the Nexus 7, which I love). Yet there's no denying that the iPad has revolutionised the computer industry by triggering the tablet era.

This review focuses solely on the iPad Air.

Having owned two other iPads: iPad 1 and iPad 3, I am no novice to the iPad, and have followed the incremental upgrades since it was first introduced .... just 4 years ago!

When my iPad Air finally arrived (had it on pre-order for several months) I thought that the store had made a mistake and got me the iPad mini instead!
I opened the usual premium Apple packaging and was greeted by a lovely, super slim and lightweight gem of a tablet. The side bezels are so much thinner too, no wonder it could be mistaken for a Mini at first glance.

The iPad Air is no incremental upgrade, but a total redesign around the existing iPad 4 screen. (albeit offering better viewing angles)

It really is a pity that I had to buy a protective case, which covers the beautifully crafted aluminium body. Yet it means that your investment will still look like new for years.

------------------------------------------
Case options: Skip this part if not interested.

When it comes to cases there is quite a choice. I call these necessary evils, yet one should not skimp on a quality case offering the best protection possible.

I have the original Apple, Invision and the Veo cases for the iPad Air. I cannot comment on cases I do not own which might prove to be actually better.
They weigh 148.7g, 208.5g and 230.7g respectively.
The Apple case is expensive, and the volume and sleep buttons are a nuisance to operate as they are covered in the thick premium leather. The other cases offer easy access to the buttons. However this case offers the best protection and looks great. It takes a lot of patience to remove this cover once it is in place.
The Invision is a very cheap case and a best seller. It looks sturdy and the stitching is top notch, yet I do not particularly like the shiny finish. The iPad is held in place by 4 corner tabs which tend to pop out of place fairly easily.
The Veo is probably the nearest to the Apple as far as looks go. It comes in a mat finish and the iPad is held in place via a plastic strip along the right and 4 corner tabs.
--------------------------------------------

DOES THE iPad Air LIVE UP TO THE HYPE?

A quick answer is "Yes"! The new zippy 64 bit A7 processor and crisp "Retina display" are the best I've seen on any 10" tablet so far! And even though it sports the same display as the iPad 4, the viewing angle is far superior, probably thanks to the closer proximity of the display to the scratch proof glass.

The Apps further contribute to making this the best iPad to date, as they have been optimized to take full advantage of the powerful 64bit processor. These include iPhoto, iMovie, Numbers, Pages and Keynote which are bundled for free!

Apps written for the iPad are virtually virus free and generally superior to the android version. There are various reasons for this:
○ iPad is also targeted for professional environments
○ Stable and reliable iOS platform
○ Applications are only available through the App Store, thus guaranteeing income to the developer.
○ Other platforms have new tablets springing every other day, sporting different screen sizes and processors.

Pros:
✓ Blazing fast, low consumption A7 (64bit) processor. The fastest to date
✓ Premium build quality with ever so stylish looks thanks to the precision engineered aluminium housing
✓ 30% lighter than iPad4, weighing only 469g for Wi-Fi, and 478g Wi-Fi + Cellular versions
✓ Retina display. Great colour saturation producing stunning images
✓ iWork and iLife software included for free
✓ Vast choice of apps that can mimic laptop/desktop programs
✓ Awesome battery life. No other tablet manufacturer can match as yet
✓ Is widely used in the Aviation industry by pilots*: This gives the iPad the ultimate seal of approval for reliability, performance and stability.

*Jeppesen, the leading Airline chart manufacturer, has been officially endorsed by EASA (European Aviation Safety Agency) to provide digital navigation charts on the iPad for use in flight decks by pilots, and is being used by major airlines. This is a first, and truly revolutionary!

Cons:
- Proprietary hardware required. ie: Bluetooth GPS, Airprint printers..
- No expandable memory
- No touch ID

I would have loved to see an improved version of the iPhone's touch ID.

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Probably the most difficult task is choosing the version which best suits your needs and budget:

I will first start with the common denominator. All flavours offer the same A7 chip, retina display and Wi-Fi.

So the options are colour, storage size and cellular:
♦ Beauty is in the eye of the beholder, yet I do suggest a side by side hands on comparison.
♦ Given the fast processor I would say go for the largest available storage you can afford. This might easily be a laptop alternative, given the new 128GB SSD version.
♦ Many think that cellular versions only offer data. This version also sports a GPS chip which works as good as the best GPS receivers. So this has to be taken into consideration when factoring the price difference.

Highly recommend to anyone seeking a versatile, fast and reliable alternative to a laptop.

I hope you find this review helpful. Any comments or queries are welcome, and I will try my best to address.
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48 of 50 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars 6 weeks with the best tablet in the world (the apps have it), 24 Feb 2014
Well I decided after using Android tablets for a year ish to move over to Apple and get an iPad Air and got mine just after Christmas. Went the John Lewis route due to the 2 year warranty. I'm not an Apple fan particularly - in fact this is currently the only Apple device I have.

And I have to say there's just no comparison with other tablets - yes some others have very good screens now, powerful processers etc etc but nothing else just works seemlessly like the iPad. What matters is the experience using it and here Apple is way ahead. By the way I tried out a Galaxy Note Pro 12.2 in John Lewis the other day and sorry apart from a bigger screen the user experience is just poor compared to an iPad.

There is the argument over cost and yes the iPad is expensive but considering the alternatives (Note Pro, Tablet Pro, Sony Tablet Z etc) aren't much cheaper I think it's a no-brainer. Oh and so far to put on all the apps I need day to day from the App store has cost me a whole £3.68!

On the hardware front it's difficult to fault - the screen is perfect and it feels just right for weight. I've put a Knomo case on it to protect it anyway as think if you spend nearly £500 on a device leaving it open to knocks is crazy. No expandable storage is why I went 32GB and yes an extra £80 for 16GB extra is a rip-off but total price is still not significantly more expensive than competitors.

The biggest difference between the iPad and Android tablets is the apps - not numbers as who cares if you've got 1 Billion or 500 million apps - but the difference in quality and usability. A great example of this is my 72 year old mother can use the iPad apps without any help at all but on Android she struggles. The ecosystem for Apple is miles ahead here.

This may change over time - I do expect Android to erode the Apple advantage but there is a massive difference now and if you want the best tablet experience there is just no comparison.

Our laptop at home is gathering dust for internet/email/social media usage - it's totally redundant for these tasks as having a device to just pickup and use that is instantly on and a joy to use is great.

Drawbacks? Well not much to customise is both good and bad - if you are a tinkerer then go Android but I'm fairly technical and I find after a month of playing with a device you quickly settle into 'normal' usage so just having a device that works out of the box exactly as you expect is actually better.

And being Apple connectivity is more locked down (I don't like iTunes!) but I've had no trouble integrating everything with my Nexus 5 Android phone (Not a fan of iPhone 5 - it's just too expensive).

Apart from that I just can't fault it - I really wish I could in one sense as I do wonder how Apple can improve this in future. It's just about perfect for the vast majority of people and I guess that's why it sells in such vast numbers. A big thumbs up from me.
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152 of 160 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The best piece of kit I have ever owned, 19 Nov 2013
I was torn between buying the iPad Air and the Kindle Fire HDX, but after reading reviews all over the net I decided upon the Air 32gb in silver. Having never owned an Apple product before I wasn't really sure what to expect from it, but since I've had it - only four days - I've loved every single minute of using it.

Firstly it feels so nice to hold and use, the screen is superb and colours are really vibrant. Ease of use is also first class and things I thought would be hard to achieve - such as syncing four email addresses from my current PC - were actually a piece of cake.

Having used my son's Kindle Fire HD (I know it's not really comparable)I am amazed at how much Apple have crammed into such a slim and lightweight device. It's also mindbogglingly fast and everything works seamlessly and instantly. Battery life is very good and seems to last around 11 hours, although I'm yet to run it right down to zero.

If I had to be super picky and find something that Apple's boffin's could improve upon further, it would be sound quality at mid to high levels; it can sound a tiny bit tinny (although it still sounds better than anything I've owned before). This isn't really an issue for me as I usually listen at normal sound levels, or through headphones or WiFi speakers, and in these situations the sound quality is excellent, rich and deep.

Lastly, and I suspect this is true for most cameras and tablets on the market, the camera picture quality in low light situations can be somewhat grainy, however in normal light situations it's amazing good. Again this really doesn't bother me, but in the interests of giving a fair representation it has to be mentioned.

The App Store is excellent and easily better than any of the other stores.

I can easily say this is the best piece of kit I have ever owned, and I'm really pleased that I decided on the iPad Air. It may be more expensive than other tablets on the market, but I personally feel you are getting a lot of extra value for your money.
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