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Apple iPad Air (2019) Tablet Review

Daniel Schmidt, 👁 Daniel Schmidt, Felicitas Krohn (translated by Mark Riege), 04/13/2019

Reheated fare. This year, Apple has revived a product label that was already thought dead and has fit some new hardware into an old case. The newly created tablet positions itself between the entry-level iPad and the Pro models and faces the high-end competition from Android in terms of its price. Our test will show whether this is a recipe for success.

Unlike its namesake predecessor, the iPad Air 2, the third generation of the iPad Air is not a top product in Apple's tablet segment, since this distinction continues to be reserved for the Pro models. This can also be seen in all areas, with the design being identical to the iPad Pro 10.5 from 2017 and also as there are some compromises in the remaining hardware and accessories.

The newest iPad Air is run by an A12 processor that is accompanied by 3 GB of working memory. In terms of the storage solution, buyers can choose between 64 and 256 GB of storage, with the smaller version costing 549 Euros (~$620; starting at $489 in the US) for the Wi-Fi model and the larger device costing 719 Euros (~$821; $638 in the US). The optional LTE modem costs an additional 140 Euros (~$158), so that the total can increase to 859 Euros (~$970; $769 in the US), which is also the base price of the iPad Pro 11 (64 GB, Wi-Fi only).

At around 550 Euros (~$621), the iPad Air (2019) primarily competes against the top Android models from Huawei and Samsung. It also offers pen and keyboard support, but neither of them are included in the price. While the comparison field is not particularly large, it is high-end and includes the Samsung Galaxy Tab S4, the Galaxy Tab S5e, and the Huawei MediaPad M5 10.8 Pro. In addition, we compare the Apple tablet with its in-house competitors.

Apple iPad Air 2019 (iPad Series)
Graphics adapter
Memory
3072 MB 
, LPDDR4x
Display
10.5 inch 4:3, 2224 x 1668 pixel 265 PPI, capacitive touchscreen, IPS, DCI-P3 color space, True Tone Display, grease-repellent coating, completely laminated, 1.8% reflections, glossy: yes
Storage
64 GB eMMC Flash, 64 GB 
Connections
Audio Connections: combined headphone and microphone jack (3.5 mm audio port), 1 Fingerprint Reader, Brightness Sensor, Sensors: 3‑axis gyroscope, acceleration ­sensor, barometer, Lightning connection
Networking
802.11 a/b/g/n/ac (a/b/g/n/ac), Bluetooth 5.0
Size
height x width x depth (in mm): 6.1 x 250.6 x 174.1 ( = 0.24 x 9.87 x 6.85 in)
Battery
30.8 Wh, 8134 mAh Lithium-Polymer, 3.79 V
Operating System
Apple iOS 12
Camera
Primary Camera: 8 MPix (HDR, autofocus, f/2.4, Full-HD video)
Secondary Camera: 7 MPix (HDR, fixed focus, f/2.2, Full-HD video)
Additional features
Speakers: two speakers, Keyboard: onscreen, charger, USB-to-Lightning cable, sticker, quick-start instructions, safety information, 12 Months Warranty, fanless
Weight
456 g ( = 16.08 oz / 1.01 pounds), Power Supply: 97 g ( = 3.42 oz / 0.21 pounds)
Price
549 Euro
Note: The manufacturer may use components from different suppliers including display panels, drives or memory sticks with similar specifications.

 

Case - iPad with aluminum unibody

The Apple iPad Air (2019) is available in three color variants: silver, space gray, and gold. Externally it is almost a twin of the iPad Pro 10.5 and can only be distinguished by the missing speaker grills on the top edge and the lack of a camera hump, since the camera of the iPad Air is flush with the aluminum case. In terms of the lack of design elements compared to the 2017 Pro model, it reminds more of the Air 2, but it has a better display-to-surface ratio and a larger panel, giving it more display area.

The quality of the workmanship is very good. Due to the unibody design, there are hardly any transitions between materials and the tablet really feels great in the hands. Unfortunately, the aluminum and the glass surface turn out to be fingerprint magnets. Despite the grease-repellent coating, these surfaces are hard to clean. The gaps between the materials of the iPad Air 3 are very tight and even. When trying to twist it, the Apple tablet creaks easily, and pressure on the IPS display results in some slight wave-forming. Even some powerful pressure on the back can bring the same result. While the latter is rather unlikely in everyday operation, holding the iPad by the panel frame can actually result in some wave-forming on the screen.

The battery of the tablet is built-in and cannot be replaced by the user. In addition, there is no protection against dust or water.  

Starting from the left: iPad Air 2 and iPad Air (2019)

Size Comparison

258.7 mm / 10.2 inch 171.8 mm / 6.76 inch 7.3 mm / 0.2874 inch 498 g1.098 lbs250.6 mm / 9.87 inch 174.1 mm / 6.85 inch 6.1 mm / 0.2402 inch 456 g1.005 lbs250.6 mm / 9.87 inch 174.1 mm / 6.85 inch 6.1 mm / 0.2402 inch 469 g1.034 lbs249 mm / 9.8 inch 164 mm / 6.46 inch 7 mm / 0.2756 inch 482 g1.063 lbs240 mm / 9.45 inch 169.5 mm / 6.67 inch 7.5 mm / 0.2953 inch 469 g1.034 lbs240 mm / 9.45 inch 169.5 mm / 6.67 inch 6.1 mm / 0.2402 inch 444 g0.979 lbs

Connections - Lightning instead of USB-C

In contrast to the new Pro models, the iPad Air (2019) does not offer a USB-C connection but continues to have a Lightning port, which with the optional corresponding adapters can also support USB, HDMI, or card readers. While the display can also be operated by the first generation of the Apple Pencil, this is not included. You can also connect an optional keyboard cover via the Smart Connector.

While the iPad Air does not offer NFC, Bluetooth 5.0 is on board, and there also continues to be a full audio port (3.5 mm).

Top: audio, power
Top: audio, power
Left: Smart Connector
Left: Smart Connector
Right: volume
Right: volume
Bottom: speaker, Lightning port, speaker
Bottom: speaker, Lightning port, speaker

Software - The usual fare in the iPad Air

At the time of our test, the current iOS 12.2 is installed on the Apple iPad Air (2019), and due to Apple's exemplary update policy and the modern SoC, there should also be regular updates in the coming years.

Like all the other Apple tablets, the iPad Air also offers multitasking, which works well in our test and only rarely causes some smaller stutters. On the other hand, the scaling of the operating system continues to leave a lot to be desired. 

Communication and GPS - Fast WLAN in the iPad

The Apple iPad Air (2019) supports Wi-Fi 5 (IEEE-802.11a, b, g, n, ac) with MIMO antenna technology and thus uses the 2.4 as well as the 5.0 GHz networks. As the test with our Linksys EA8500 reference router shows, the transfer rates are at a very good level. The range is also good, and we were still able to maintain a stable connection across two floors, enabling us to surf the web quickly. 

Optionally, the iPad Air is also available with LTE. With the tablet, users can then access mobile Internet at up to 1 Gb/s. The frequency band coverage is also very good and should be able to create a data connection in most countries of the world. In addition to the conventional nano-SIM slot, the LTE model also offers the option to use an eSIM.

Networking
iperf3 Client (receive) TCP 1 m 4M x10
Apple iPad 6 2018
A10 Fusion GPU, A10 Fusion, 32 GB NVMe
570 MBit/s ∼100% +6%
Apple iPad Air 2019
A12 Bionic GPU, A12 Bionic, 64 GB eMMC Flash
540 (min: 499, max: 581) MBit/s ∼95%
Apple iPad Pro 10.5 2017
A10X Fusion GPU, A10X Fusion, Toshiba THGBX669D4LLDXG 64 GB NAND
528 MBit/s ∼93% -2%
Samsung Galaxy Tab S4
Adreno 540, 835, 64 GB UFS 2.1 Flash
290 MBit/s ∼51% -46%
Huawei MediaPad M5 10.8 Pro
Mali-G71 MP8, Kirin 960, 64 GB eMMC Flash
236 MBit/s ∼41% -56%
iperf3 Client (transmit) TCP 1 m 4M x10
Samsung Galaxy Tab S4
Adreno 540, 835, 64 GB UFS 2.1 Flash
580 MBit/s ∼100% +5%
Apple iPad Air 2019
A12 Bionic GPU, A12 Bionic, 64 GB eMMC Flash
553 (min: 481, max: 580) MBit/s ∼95%
Apple iPad 6 2018
A10 Fusion GPU, A10 Fusion, 32 GB NVMe
500 MBit/s ∼86% -10%
Apple iPad Pro 10.5 2017
A10X Fusion GPU, A10X Fusion, Toshiba THGBX669D4LLDXG 64 GB NAND
497 MBit/s ∼86% -10%
Huawei MediaPad M5 10.8 Pro
Mali-G71 MP8, Kirin 960, 64 GB eMMC Flash
238 MBit/s ∼41% -57%
0102030405060708090100110120130140150160170180190200210220230240250260270280290300310320330340350360370380390400410420430440450460470480490500510520530540550560570580590Tooltip
; iperf3 Client (receive) TCP 1 m 4M x10; iperf 3.1.3: Ø540 (499-581)
; iperf3 Client (transmit) TCP 1 m 4M x10; iperf 3.1.3: Ø553 (481-580)

A-GPS and Glonass support are also limited to the model with the modem, so that when you have the pure Wi-Fi model as in our test unit, the tablet can only determine its location by using the digital compass, iBeacon micro-locating, and available WLAN networks. But we still tried it, and it clearly showed that this is not an option that is really workable for the road. 

Apple iPad Air (2019) - overview
Apple iPad Air (2019) - overview
Apple iPad Air (2019) - going around the lake
Apple iPad Air (2019) - going around the lake
Apple iPad Air (2019) - sharp curve
Apple iPad Air (2019) - sharp curve
Garmin Edge 500 - overview
Garmin Edge 500 - overview
Garmin Edge 500 - going around the lake
Garmin Edge 500 - going around the lake
Garmin Edge 500 - sharp curve
Garmin Edge 500 - sharp curve

Cameras - Not modern but still usable

Selfie taken with the iPad Air 3

Like all the other current tablets from Apple, the iPad Air (2019) also uses a 7 MP camera (f/2.2) in front. However, it does not have a TrueDepth sensor, so that you have to make do without functions such as the portrait mode, Animoji, and Memoji. During the day, the recordings are fairly good, even if the auto-HDR function does not always work reliably.

The main camera appears to be identical to that of the iPad (2018) and probably also still comes from the remaining stocks of the iPhone 5S. It was a great camera at the time in 2013 but is far from modern photography according to the current standards. In daylight, the recordings succeed fairly well, offering a balanced image composition. Only in the slightly too poor details or the occasionally pixelated edges, the meager 8 MP becomes obvious. In weak surrounding light, the optics hit their limits and capitulate to darkness.

With both cameras, videos can be recorded in Full HD (1080p, 30 FPS) at best and offer a decent quality in good light conditions. 

Image Comparison

Choose a scene and navigate within the first image. One click changes the position on touchscreens. One click on the zoomed-in image opens the original in a new window. The first image shows the scaled photograph of the test device.

Scene 1Scene 2Scene 3

Accessories and Warranty - Only the absolutely necessary is included

In addition to the tablet itself, the delivery of the Apple iPad Air (2019) only includes a relatively heavy charger (97 grams, 3.4 oz with cable; 5.1 V, 2.1 A) as well as a Lightning cable. The warranty period covers merely 12 months, which does not affect the (German) warranty period required by law.

With Apple Care+, you can order additional technical support and hardware protection, which includes the optional Apple Pencil. The insurance package costs a one-time payment of 79 Euros (~$89). In case of a repair, you have to pay an additional 49 Euro (~$55) flat rate for the iPad Air or 29 Euros (~$33) for the pen.

Ample accessories are available in the Apple Store. Besides the already mentioned Apple Pencil 1 (99 Euros, ~$112), you can also get a keyboard cover (179 Euros, ~$202) or a Smart Cover (55 Euros, ~$62).

Input Devices and Operation - Apple tablet with Touch ID

The capacitive touchscreen of the Apple iPad Air 3 works well as expected and transfers input and touch quickly and reliably. Like the iPad (2018), the newest sprout from Apple's tablet portfolio also supports input with the Apple Pencil. Thanks to the completely laminated display, the writing experience becomes even more natural.

In addition to the onscreen keyboard, the iPad Air now also allows you to connect an optional keyboard. Unfortunately, we had no access to a keyboard during the test, but the quality and typing experience should be similar to those of the older models.

The keys for volume control and the power button sit tightly inside their frames and offer a short and precise stroke. You can also find Touch ID in the iPad Air. Anyone skeptical about Face ID or planning to use the tablet with the whole family should be pleased about this, but from a technical point of view, it is a small step backwards. The fingerprint sensor itself works reliably and unlocks the tablet quickly.

Display - An IPS panel with some minor negative points compared to the Pro model

Subpixel grid

The Apple iPad Air (2019) has a 10.5-inch IPS display that offers a resolution of 2224x1668 pixels and a good pixel density of 265 ppi. Due to the size and technical specifications, the panel is very similar to that of the iPad Pro 10.5, but we can see some basic differences in our measurements.

In terms of brightness, the iPad Air does not achieve the excellent values of the 2017 model. While it still is at a good level with an average of 483 cd/m², it remains significantly below the Pro 10.5, which offers 625 cd/m². The measurements of our test unit with the brightness sensor activated and an even distribution of bright and dark areas (APL 50) are at a similar level.

Although the iPad Air and the iPad (2018) are at the same brightness level, our test unit turns out significantly darker in the measurement of the black value, which leads to a good contrast ratio.

474
cd/m²
487
cd/m²
470
cd/m²
492
cd/m²
515
cd/m²
479
cd/m²
471
cd/m²
497
cd/m²
462
cd/m²
Distribution of brightness
X-Rite i1Pro 2
Maximum: 515 cd/m² Average: 483 cd/m² Minimum: 1.9 cd/m²
Brightness Distribution: 90 %
Center on Battery: 515 cd/m²
Contrast: 1256:1 (Black: 0.41 cd/m²)
ΔE Color 1.6 | 0.6-29.43 Ø6.1
ΔE Greyscale 2.8 | 0.64-98 Ø6.3
99.7% sRGB (Calman 2D)
Gamma: 2.21
Apple iPad Air 2019
IPS, 2224x1668, 10.5
Apple iPad Air 2
IPS, 2048x1536, 9.7
Apple iPad 6 2018
IPS, 2048x1536, 9.7
Apple iPad Pro 10.5 2017
IPS, 2224x1668, 10.5
Huawei MediaPad M5 10.8 Pro
IPS, 2560x1600, 10.8
Samsung Galaxy Tab S4
Super AMOLED, 2560x1600, 10.5
Screen
-27%
6%
9%
-112%
-12%
Brightness middle
515
423
-18%
530
3%
634
23%
384
-25%
474
-8%
Brightness
483
427
-12%
513
6%
625
29%
360
-25%
477
-1%
Brightness Distribution
90
92
2%
92
2%
87
-3%
84
-7%
91
1%
Black Level *
0.41
0.61
-49%
0.61
-49%
0.39
5%
0.8
-95%
Contrast
1256
693
-45%
869
-31%
1626
29%
480
-62%
Colorchecker DeltaE2000 *
1.6
2.86
-79%
1.2
25%
1.9
-19%
6.83
-327%
2.5
-56%
Colorchecker DeltaE2000 max. *
4.4
3.2
27%
3.9
11%
12.7
-189%
5.8
-32%
Greyscale DeltaE2000 *
2.8
2.37
15%
1
64%
2.8
-0%
7.5
-168%
2.1
25%
Gamma
2.21 100%
2.43 91%
2.28 96%
2.26 97%
2.199 100%
2.08 106%
CCT
6944 94%
6941 94%
6588 99%
7027 93%
8544 76%
6281 103%
Color Space (Percent of AdobeRGB 1998)
88

* ... smaller is better

Screen Flickering / PWM (Pulse-Width Modulation)

To dim the screen, some notebooks will simply cycle the backlight on and off in rapid succession - a method called Pulse Width Modulation (PWM) . This cycling frequency should ideally be undetectable to the human eye. If said frequency is too low, users with sensitive eyes may experience strain or headaches or even notice the flickering altogether.
Screen flickering / PWM not detected

In comparison: 51 % of all tested devices do not use PWM to dim the display. If PWM was detected, an average of 9429 (minimum: 43 - maximum: 142900) Hz was measured.

We evaluate the accuracy of the color reproduction with a photo spectrometer and the CalMAN analysis software. As before with other Apple products, we were unable to entice the tablet in our measurements to target the larger DCI-P3 color space, which should be supported according to Apple.

In the sRGB color-space measurements, the iPad Air distinguishes itself with a natural color reproduction that hardly shows any visible deviations. Only the grayscale shows a slightly increased blue tint, although this does not interfere in everyday operation. As soon as the True Tone control is activated, this also disappears.

Grayscales (target space: sRGB)
Grayscales (target space: sRGB)
Mixed colors (target space: sRGB)
Mixed colors (target space: sRGB)
Saturation (target space: sRGB)
Saturation (target space: sRGB)
Color space (target space: sRGB)
Color space (target space: sRGB)

Display Response Times

Display response times show how fast the screen is able to change from one color to the next. Slow response times can lead to afterimages and can cause moving objects to appear blurry (ghosting). Gamers of fast-paced 3D titles should pay special attention to fast response times.
       Response Time Black to White
28 ms ... rise ↗ and fall ↘ combined↗ 10.4 ms rise
↘ 17.6 ms fall
The screen shows relatively slow response rates in our tests and may be too slow for gamers.
In comparison, all tested devices range from 0.8 (minimum) to 240 (maximum) ms. » 59 % of all devices are better.
This means that the measured response time is worse than the average of all tested devices (25.1 ms).
       Response Time 50% Grey to 80% Grey
58 ms ... rise ↗ and fall ↘ combined↗ 27.6 ms rise
↘ 30.4 ms fall
The screen shows slow response rates in our tests and will be unsatisfactory for gamers.
In comparison, all tested devices range from 0.9 (minimum) to 636 (maximum) ms. » 93 % of all devices are better.
This means that the measured response time is worse than the average of all tested devices (40.1 ms).

Outdoors, the fully laminated display of the Air tablet distinguishes itself compared to the iPad (2018), since it struggles less with reflections and also benefits from the stronger contrast ratio. However, its usage is limited in strong sunlight.

iPad Air in the shade
iPad Air in the shade
iPad Air in the spring sun
iPad Air in the spring sun

The viewing-angle stability of the Apple iPad Air is really good. While the displayed contents get a warmer tint at steep viewing angles, there are no color inversions. Likewise, we did not observe any glow effect and only a very slight clouding at the panel edge when it was completely dark.

Viewing-angle stability of the Apple iPad Air (2019)
Viewing-angle stability of the Apple iPad Air (2019)

Performance - A lot of power in the iPad Air

The Apple iPad Air (2019) is run by the in-house A12 Bionic processor, which is supported by 3 GB of LPDDR4x working memory. The SoC is already well-known from iPhones and ensures an incredibly strong performance that is currently only surpassed by the A12X in the iPad Pro models.

In the benchmarks, the tablet places in front of the comparison field, without being surpassed or relegated into second place in any of the benchmarks. While information on the internal storage is not further specified by Apple, it operates at the same speed in the Passmark Mobile benchmark as those in the iPhones.

Geekbench 4.3
64 Bit Multi-Core Score
Apple iPad Air 2019
11490 Points ∼32%
Average Apple A12 Bionic (11244 - 11598, n=5)
11418 Points ∼32% -1%
Apple iPad Pro 10.5 2017
9358 Points ∼26% -19%
Samsung Galaxy Tab S4
6477 Points ∼18% -44%
Huawei MediaPad M5 10.8 Pro
6173 Points ∼17% -46%
Apple iPad 6 2018
5952 Points ∼16% -48%
Average of class Tablet (1106 - 18041, n=55)
4639 Points ∼13% -60%
Apple iPad Air 2
4357 Points ∼12% -62%
64 Bit Single-Core Score
Average Apple A12 Bionic (4750 - 4824, n=5)
4779 Points ∼75% 0%
Apple iPad Air 2019
4758 Points ∼75%
Apple iPad Pro 10.5 2017
3933 Points ∼62% -17%
Apple iPad 6 2018
3499 Points ∼55% -26%
Samsung Galaxy Tab S4
1893 Points ∼30% -60%
Huawei MediaPad M5 10.8 Pro
1892 Points ∼30% -60%
Apple iPad Air 2
1821 Points ∼29% -62%
Average of class Tablet (429 - 5002, n=55)
1653 Points ∼26% -65%
3DMark
2560x1440 Sling Shot Extreme (ES 3.1) Unlimited Physics
Apple iPad Air 2019
3347 Points ∼74%
Average Apple A12 Bionic (2723 - 3347, n=5)
3060 Points ∼67% -9%
Samsung Galaxy Tab S4
2919 Points ∼64% -13%
Huawei MediaPad M5 10.8 Pro
2405 Points ∼53% -28%
Apple iPad Pro 10.5 2017
2036 Points ∼45% -39%
Apple iPad 6 2018
1627 Points ∼36% -51%
Average of class Tablet (0 - 3347, n=43)
1600 Points ∼35% -52%
Apple iPad Air 2
1400 Points ∼31% -58%
2560x1440 Sling Shot Extreme (ES 3.1) Unlimited Graphics
Apple iPad Air 2019
6484 Points ∼79%
Apple iPad Pro 10.5 2017
5459 Points ∼67% -16%
Average Apple A12 Bionic (4828 - 6484, n=5)
5443 Points ∼66% -16%
Samsung Galaxy Tab S4
4086 Points ∼50% -37%
Apple iPad 6 2018
3852 Points ∼47% -41%
Apple iPad Air 2
2377 Points ∼29% -63%
Huawei MediaPad M5 10.8 Pro
1885 Points ∼23% -71%
Average of class Tablet (0 - 6993, n=43)
1631 Points ∼20% -75%
2560x1440 Sling Shot Extreme (ES 3.1) Unlimited
Apple iPad Air 2019
5367 Points ∼85%
Average Apple A12 Bionic (4121 - 5367, n=5)
4638 Points ∼73% -14%
Apple iPad Pro 10.5 2017
3975 Points ∼63% -26%
Samsung Galaxy Tab S4
3753 Points ∼59% -30%
Apple iPad 6 2018
2955 Points ∼47% -45%
Apple iPad Air 2
2059 Points ∼33% -62%
Huawei MediaPad M5 10.8 Pro
1980 Points ∼31% -63%
Average of class Tablet (0 - 5367, n=44)
1397 Points ∼22% -74%
2560x1440 Sling Shot OpenGL ES 3.0 Unlimited Physics
Apple iPad Air 2019
3493 Points ∼74%
Average Apple A12 Bionic (2880 - 3493, n=5)
3129 Points ∼67% -10%
Samsung Galaxy Tab S4
2952 Points ∼63% -15%
Huawei MediaPad M5 10.8 Pro
2210 Points ∼47% -37%
Apple iPad Pro 10.5 2017
2145 Points ∼46% -39%
Apple iPad 6 2018
1690 Points ∼36% -52%
Average of class Tablet (739 - 4700, n=48)
1643 Points ∼35% -53%
Apple iPad Air 2
1449 Points ∼31% -59%
2560x1440 Sling Shot OpenGL ES 3.0 Unlimited Graphics
Apple iPad Air 2019
15399 Points ∼54%
Average Apple A12 Bionic (10374 - 15399, n=5)
13770 Points ∼48% -11%
Apple iPad Pro 10.5 2017
12191 Points ∼42% -21%
Apple iPad 6 2018
7253 Points ∼25% -53%
Samsung Galaxy Tab S4
3682 Points ∼13% -76%
Apple iPad Air 2
3474 Points ∼12% -77%
Average of class Tablet (165 - 28751, n=48)
3099 Points ∼11% -80%
Huawei MediaPad M5 10.8 Pro
2466 Points ∼9% -84%
2560x1440 Sling Shot OpenGL ES 3.0 Unlimited
Apple iPad Air 2019
8763 Points ∼65%
Average Apple A12 Bionic (6667 - 8763, n=5)
7814 Points ∼58% -11%
Apple iPad Pro 10.5 2017
5975 Points ∼44% -32%
Apple iPad 6 2018
4190 Points ∼31% -52%
Samsung Galaxy Tab S4
3753 Points ∼28% -57%
Apple iPad Air 2
2651 Points ∼20% -70%
Huawei MediaPad M5 10.8 Pro
2404 Points ∼18% -73%
Average of class Tablet (207 - 13454, n=48)
2050 Points ∼15% -77%
2560x1440 Sling Shot Extreme (ES 3.1) Physics
Apple iPad Air 2019
3312 Points ∼77%
Average Apple A12 Bionic (2960 - 3312, n=5)
3114 Points ∼72% -6%
Samsung Galaxy Tab S4
2952 Points ∼68% -11%
Huawei MediaPad M5 10.8 Pro
2416 Points ∼56% -27%
Apple iPad Pro 10.5 2017
2027 Points ∼47% -39%
Apple iPad Air 2
1478 Points ∼34% -55%
Average of class Tablet (0 - 3312, n=62)
1474 Points ∼34% -55%
Apple iPad 6 2018
1439 Points ∼33% -57%
2560x1440 Sling Shot Extreme (ES 3.1) Graphics
Apple iPad Air 2019
5760 Points ∼91%
Apple iPad Pro 10.5 2017
4537 Points ∼71% -21%
Average Apple A12 Bionic (3712 - 5760, n=5)
4389 Points ∼69% -24%
Apple iPad 6 2018
3682 Points ∼58% -36%
Samsung Galaxy Tab S4
3682 Points ∼58% -36%
Apple iPad Air 2
2383 Points ∼37% -59%
Huawei MediaPad M5 10.8 Pro
1646 Points ∼26% -71%
Average of class Tablet (0 - 5760, n=62)
1193 Points ∼19% -79%
2560x1440 Sling Shot Extreme (ES 3.1)
Apple iPad Air 2019
4949 Points ∼86%
Average Apple A12 Bionic (3514 - 4949, n=5)
4005 Points ∼70% -19%
Apple iPad Pro 10.5 2017
3558 Points ∼62% -28%
Samsung Galaxy Tab S4
3490 Points ∼61% -29%
Apple iPad 6 2018
2735 Points ∼48% -45%
Apple iPad Air 2
2098 Points ∼37% -58%
Huawei MediaPad M5 10.8 Pro
1771 Points ∼31% -64%
Average of class Tablet (0 - 4949, n=68)
1052 Points ∼18% -79%
2560x1440 Sling Shot OpenGL ES 3.0 Physics
Apple iPad Air 2019
3180 Points ∼71%
Samsung Galaxy Tab S4
2952 Points ∼66% -7%
Average Apple A12 Bionic (2713 - 3184, n=5)
2407 Points ∼54% -24%
Huawei MediaPad M5 10.8 Pro
2366 Points ∼53% -26%
Apple iPad Pro 10.5 2017
1960 Points ∼44% -38%
Apple iPad 6 2018
1535 Points ∼34% -52%
Apple iPad Air 2
1445 Points ∼32% -55%
Average of class Tablet (793 - 3184, n=64)
1443 Points ∼32% -55%
2560x1440 Sling Shot OpenGL ES 3.0 Graphics
Apple iPad Air 2019
10647 Points ∼100%
Apple iPad Pro 10.5 2017
7212 Points ∼68% -32%
Average Apple A12 Bionic (7055 - 10647, n=5)
7095 Points ∼67% -33%
Apple iPad 6 2018
6095 Points ∼57% -43%
Samsung Galaxy Tab S4
3682 Points ∼35% -65%
Apple iPad Air 2
3534 Points ∼33% -67%
Huawei MediaPad M5 10.8 Pro
2392 Points ∼22% -78%
Average of class Tablet (42 - 10647, n=64)
1731 Points ∼16% -84%
2560x1440 Sling Shot OpenGL ES 3.0
Apple iPad Air 2019
6997 Points ∼89%
Average Apple A12 Bionic (5205 - 6997, n=5)
4938 Points ∼63% -29%
Apple iPad Pro 10.5 2017
4521 Points ∼58% -35%
Apple iPad 6 2018
3672 Points ∼47% -48%
Samsung Galaxy Tab S4
3490 Points ∼45% -50%
Apple iPad Air 2
2676 Points ∼34% -62%
Huawei MediaPad M5 10.8 Pro
2386 Points ∼31% -66%
Average of class Tablet (53 - 6997, n=68)
1359 Points ∼17% -81%
1280x720 offscreen Ice Storm Unlimited Physics
Apple iPad Air 2019
27663 Points ∼32%
Average Apple A12 Bionic (27400 - 27717, n=5)
27548 Points ∼32% 0%
Apple iPad Pro 10.5 2017
19534 Points ∼23% -29%
Samsung Galaxy Tab S4
19037 Points ∼22% -31%
Apple iPad 6 2018
15499 Points ∼18% -44%
Huawei MediaPad M5 10.8 Pro
14456 Points ∼17% -48%
Average of class Tablet (3675 - 51374, n=152)
13331 Points ∼15% -52%
Apple iPad Air 2
10379 Points ∼12% -62%
1280x720 offscreen Ice Storm Unlimited Graphics Score
Average Apple A12 Bionic (159735 - 162695, n=5)
160619 Points ∼30% 0%
Apple iPad Air 2019
160399 Points ∼30%
Apple iPad Pro 10.5 2017
110148 Points ∼21% -31%
Apple iPad 6 2018
62626 Points ∼12% -61%
Samsung Galaxy Tab S4
56368 Points ∼11% -65%
Huawei MediaPad M5 10.8 Pro
35076 Points ∼7% -78%
Apple iPad Air 2
31542 Points ∼6% -80%
Average of class Tablet (2109 - 194856, n=152)
20201 Points ∼4% -87%
1280x720 offscreen Ice Storm Unlimited Score
Apple iPad Air 2019
77626 Points ∼33%
Average Apple A12 Bionic (77128 - 77626, n=5)
77462 Points ∼33% 0%
Apple iPad Pro 10.5 2017
54237 Points ∼23% -30%
Samsung Galaxy Tab S4
39260 Points ∼17% -49%
Apple iPad 6 2018
37372 Points ∼16% -52%
Huawei MediaPad M5 10.8 Pro
26634 Points ∼11% -66%
Apple iPad Air 2
21707 Points ∼9% -72%
Average of class Tablet (2411 - 106954, n=153)
15950 Points ∼7% -79%
GFXBench (DX / GLBenchmark) 2.7
1920x1080 T-Rex HD Offscreen C24Z16
Apple iPad Air 2019
261 fps ∼2%
Average Apple A12 Bionic (226 - 274, n=5)
249 fps ∼2% -5%
Apple iPad Pro 10.5 2017
225 fps ∼2% -14%
Apple iPad 6 2018
125 fps ∼1% -52%
Apple iPad 6 2018
118 fps ∼1% -55%
Huawei MediaPad M5 10.8 Pro
93 fps ∼1% -64%
Apple iPad Air 2
70.4 fps ∼1% -73%
Samsung Galaxy Tab S4
69 fps ∼1% -74%
Average of class Tablet (4.2 - 451, n=178)
32 fps ∼0% -88%
T-Rex HD Onscreen C24Z16
Apple iPad Air 2019
59.9 fps ∼2%
Average Apple A12 Bionic (59.5 - 60, n=5)
59.9 fps ∼2% 0%
Apple iPad 6 2018
59.7 fps ∼2% 0%
Apple iPad 6 2018
59 fps ∼2% -2%
Apple iPad Pro 10.5 2017
59 fps ∼2% -2%
Samsung Galaxy Tab S4
58 fps ∼2% -3%
Huawei MediaPad M5 10.8 Pro
57 fps ∼2% -5%
Apple iPad Air 2
52.1 fps ∼2% -13%
Average of class Tablet (3.7 - 120, n=182)
21 fps ∼1% -65%
GFXBench 3.0
off screen Manhattan Offscreen OGL
Apple iPad Air 2019
139 fps ∼25%
Average Apple A12 Bionic (107 - 139, n=5)
123 fps ∼22% -12%
Apple iPad Pro 10.5 2017
109 fps ∼20% -22%
Apple iPad 6 2018
62.6 fps ∼11% -55%
Apple iPad 6 2018
58.9 fps ∼11% -58%
Samsung Galaxy Tab S4
60 fps ∼11% -57%
Huawei MediaPad M5 10.8 Pro
41 fps ∼7% -71%
Apple iPad Air 2
37.6 fps ∼7% -73%
Average of class Tablet (1.8 - 220, n=116)
21 fps ∼4% -85%
on screen Manhattan Onscreen OGL
Average Apple A12 Bionic (58.5 - 60, n=5)
59.3 fps ∼16% +1%
Apple iPad Air 2019
58.5 fps ∼16%
Apple iPad Pro 10.5 2017
58 fps ∼16% -1%
Apple iPad 6 2018
40.9 fps ∼11% -30%
Apple iPad 6 2018
40.3 fps ∼11% -31%
Samsung Galaxy Tab S4
36 fps ∼10% -38%
Apple iPad Air 2
27 fps ∼7% -54%
Huawei MediaPad M5 10.8 Pro
27 fps ∼7% -54%
Average of class Tablet (2.9 - 110, n=119)
14.7 fps ∼4% -75%
GFXBench 3.1
off screen Manhattan ES 3.1 Offscreen
Apple iPad Air 2019
96 fps ∼2%
Average Apple A12 Bionic (62 - 96, n=4)
78.8 fps ∼2% -18%
Apple iPad Pro 10.5 2017
63 fps ∼1% -34%
Apple iPad 6 2018
42.7 fps ∼1% -56%
Samsung Galaxy Tab S4
41 fps ∼1% -57%
Huawei MediaPad M5 10.8 Pro
28 fps ∼1% -71%
Average of class Tablet (2 - 173, n=65)
19.9 fps ∼0% -79%
Apple iPad Air 2
17.9 fps ∼0% -81%
on screen Manhattan ES 3.1 Onscreen
Average Apple A12 Bionic (48 - 60, n=4)
54.5 fps ∼2% +6%
Apple iPad Air 2019
51.2 fps ∼1%
Apple iPad Pro 10.5 2017
43 fps ∼1% -16%
Apple iPad 6 2018
27.3 fps ∼1% -47%
Samsung Galaxy Tab S4
22 fps ∼1% -57%
Huawei MediaPad M5 10.8 Pro
16 fps ∼0% -69%
Average of class Tablet (2.7 - 95, n=65)
12.5 fps ∼0% -76%
Apple iPad Air 2
11.5 fps ∼0% -78%
GFXBench
High Tier Onscreen
Average Apple A12 Bionic (26.4 - 59, n=4)
38.1 fps ∼24% +44%
Apple iPad Air 2019
26.4 fps ∼17%
Apple iPad 6 2018
12.3 fps ∼8% -53%
Average of class Tablet (0 - 49, n=15)
10.5 fps ∼7% -60%
Samsung Galaxy Tab S4
8.9 fps ∼6% -66%
Apple iPad Air 2
6.1 fps ∼4% -77%
2560x1440 High Tier Offscreen
Apple iPad Air 2019
26.3 fps ∼24%
Average Apple A12 Bionic (16.3 - 26.3, n=4)
21.2 fps ∼19% -19%
Average of class Tablet (0 - 51.1, n=15)
11.7 fps ∼11% -56%
Apple iPad 6 2018
10.8 fps ∼10% -59%
Samsung Galaxy Tab S4
9.3 fps ∼8% -65%
Apple iPad Air 2
5.3 fps ∼5% -80%
Normal Tier Onscreen
Average Apple A12 Bionic (40.4 - 59, n=4)
46.9 fps ∼24% +16%
Apple iPad Air 2019
40.4 fps ∼20%
Apple iPad 6 2018
20 fps ∼10% -50%
Average of class Tablet (0 - 58, n=15)
15.1 fps ∼8% -63%
Samsung Galaxy Tab S4
14 fps ∼7% -65%
Apple iPad Air 2
9.5 fps ∼5% -76%
1920x1080 Normal Tier Offscreen
Apple iPad Air 2019
70.5 fps ∼28%
Average Apple A12 Bionic (36.8 - 70.5, n=4)
54.6 fps ∼22% -23%
Average of class Tablet (0 - 134, n=15)
31.3 fps ∼12% -56%
Apple iPad 6 2018
30.8 fps ∼12% -56%
Samsung Galaxy Tab S4
25 fps ∼10% -65%
Apple iPad Air 2
14.2 fps ∼6% -80%
off screen Car Chase Offscreen
Apple iPad Air 2019
62.8 fps ∼16%
Average Apple A12 Bionic (38 - 62.8, n=4)
48.7 fps ∼12% -22%
Apple iPad 6 2018
26.8 fps ∼7% -57%
Samsung Galaxy Tab S4
25 fps ∼6% -60%
Huawei MediaPad M5 10.8 Pro
16 fps ∼4% -75%
Average of class Tablet (0 - 107, n=44)
13.4 fps ∼3% -79%
on screen Car Chase Onscreen
Average Apple A12 Bionic (31 - 58, n=4)
39 fps ∼23% +9%
Apple iPad Air 2019
35.8 fps ∼21%
Apple iPad 6 2018
17.9 fps ∼11% -50%
Samsung Galaxy Tab S4
13 fps ∼8% -64%
Huawei MediaPad M5 10.8 Pro
9.3 fps ∼5% -74%
Average of class Tablet (0 - 47, n=44)
7.71 fps ∼5% -78%
AnTuTu v7 - Total Score
Apple iPad Air 2019
370545 Points ∼65%
Average Apple A12 Bionic (302955 - 370545, n=4)
347775 Points ∼61% -6%
Samsung Galaxy Tab S4
201881 Points ∼36% -46%
Huawei MediaPad M5 10.8 Pro
175581 Points ∼31% -53%
Apple iPad 6 2018
170921 Points ∼30% -54%
Average of class Tablet (0 - 566378, n=31)
147105 Points ∼26% -60%
BaseMark OS II
Web
Apple iPad Air 2019
1734 Points ∼85%
Average Apple A12 Bionic (1711 - 1734, n=5)
1726 Points ∼85% 0%
Apple iPad 6 2018
1628 Points ∼80% -6%
Apple iPad Air 2
1263 Points ∼62% -27%
Samsung Galaxy Tab S4
1218 Points ∼60% -30%
Huawei MediaPad M5 10.8 Pro
913 Points ∼45% -47%
Average of class Tablet (9 - 2034, n=109)
753 Points ∼37% -57%
Graphics
Average Apple A12 Bionic (15614 - 15969, n=5)
15755 Points ∼55% +1%
Apple iPad Air 2019
15614 Points ∼54%
Apple iPad 6 2018
6760 Points ∼23% -57%
Samsung Galaxy Tab S4
6080 Points ∼21% -61%
Apple iPad Air 2
4920 Points ∼17% -68%
Huawei MediaPad M5 10.8 Pro
2284 Points ∼8% -85%
Average of class Tablet (98 - 28853, n=109)
2249 Points ∼8% -86%
Memory
Huawei MediaPad M5 10.8 Pro
3108 Points ∼41% +48%
Samsung Galaxy Tab S4
2900 Points ∼39% +38%
Average Apple A12 Bionic (1815 - 4169, n=5)
2684 Points ∼36% +28%
Apple iPad Air 2019
2095 Points ∼28%
Apple iPad 6 2018
1334 Points ∼18% -36%
Average of class Tablet (56 - 5423, n=109)
1072 Points ∼14% -49%
Apple iPad Air 2
832 Points ∼11% -60%
System
Apple iPad Air 2019
12591 Points ∼76%
Average Apple A12 Bionic (11675 - 12591, n=5)
12077 Points ∼73% -4%
Apple iPad 6 2018
6820 Points ∼41% -46%
Samsung Galaxy Tab S4
5537 Points ∼34% -56%
Apple iPad Air 2
4104 Points ∼25% -67%
Huawei MediaPad M5 10.8 Pro
3639 Points ∼22% -71%
Average of class Tablet (482 - 16467, n=109)
2463 Points ∼15% -80%
Overall
Average Apple A12 Bionic (4895 - 6097, n=5)
5396 Points ∼64% +4%
Apple iPad Air 2019
5169 Points ∼61%
Samsung Galaxy Tab S4
3302 Points ∼39% -36%
Apple iPad 6 2018
3163 Points ∼37% -39%
Huawei MediaPad M5 10.8 Pro
2204 Points ∼26% -57%
Apple iPad Air 2
1967 Points ∼23% -62%
Average of class Tablet (150 - 8450, n=109)
1278 Points ∼15% -75%
Basemark ES 3.1 / Metal - offscreen Overall Score
Apple iPad Air 2019
2873 Points ∼54%
Average Apple A12 Bionic (2407 - 2873, n=5)
2680 Points ∼51% -7%
Apple iPad 6 2018
1693 Points ∼32% -41%
Average of class Tablet (301 - 5300, n=17)
1526 Points ∼29% -47%
Apple iPad Air 2
754 Points ∼14% -74%

Legend

 
Apple iPad Air 2019 Apple A12 Bionic, Apple A12 Bionic GPU, 64 GB eMMC Flash
 
Apple iPad Pro 10.5 2017 Apple A10X Fusion, Apple A10X Fusion GPU / PowerVR, Toshiba THGBX669D4LLDXG 64 GB NAND
 
Apple iPad 6 2018 Apple A10 Fusion, Apple A10 Fusion GPU / PowerVR, 32 GB NVMe
 
Samsung Galaxy Tab S4 Qualcomm Snapdragon 835 (8998), Qualcomm Adreno 540, 64 GB UFS 2.1 Flash
 
Huawei MediaPad M5 10.8 Pro HiSilicon Kirin 960, ARM Mali-G71 MP8, 64 GB eMMC Flash
 
Apple iPad Air 2 Apple A8X, PowerVR GXA6850, 128 GB eMMC Flash

Surfing the web works smoothly in the iPad Air and does not represent any challenge to the Apple tablet. In the benchmarks, it also remains in first place without competition in this area.  

Jetstream 2 - Total Score
Apple iPad Air 2019 (Safari Mobile 12)
109.573 Points ∼100%
Average Apple A12 Bionic (108 - 110, n=3)
109 Points ∼99% -1%
Average of class Tablet (0 - 110, n=6)
45.9 Points ∼42% -58%
WebXPRT 3 - ---
Average Apple A12 Bionic (155 - 161, n=5)
158 Points ∼100% +1%
Apple iPad Air 2019 (Safari Mobile 12)
156 Points ∼99%
Apple iPad 6 2018 (Safari Mobile 10)
79 Points ∼50% -49%
Samsung Galaxy Tab S4 (Samsung Browser 8.0)
77 Points ∼49% -51%
Average of class Tablet (23 - 182, n=20)
73.7 Points ∼47% -53%
Huawei MediaPad M5 10.8 Pro (Chrome 68.0.3440.91)
68 Points ∼43% -56%
Speedometer 2.0 - Result
Apple iPad Air 2019 (Safari Mobile 12)
123 runs/min ∼100%
Average Apple A12 Bionic (123 - 124, n=3)
123 runs/min ∼100% 0%
Apple iPad 6 2018 (IOS 12.1.1)
65.5 (min: 64, max: 67) runs/min ∼53% -47%
Average of class Tablet (11.1 - 132, n=10)
58.9 runs/min ∼48% -52%
Octane V2 - Total Score
Average Apple A12 Bionic (41367 - 43280, n=5)
42486 Points ∼100% +2%
Apple iPad Air 2019 (Safari Mobile 12)
41770 Points ∼98%
Apple iPad Pro 10.5 2017 (Safari Mobile 10)
30333 Points ∼71% -27%
Apple iPad 6 2018 (Safari Mobile 11.3)
27967 Points ∼66% -33%
Samsung Galaxy Tab S4 (Samsung Browser 8.0)
12897 Points ∼30% -69%
Huawei MediaPad M5 10.8 Pro (Chrome 68.0.3440.91)
11854 Points ∼28% -72%
Apple iPad Air 2 (Safari 9.0 Mobile)
10512 Points ∼25% -75%
Average of class Tablet (1238 - 45734, n=170)
6729 Points ∼16% -84%
Mozilla Kraken 1.1 - Total Score
Average of class Tablet (603 - 43092, n=181)
9243 ms * ∼100% -1336%
Huawei MediaPad M5 10.8 Pro (Chrome 68.0.3440.91)
3575.4 ms * ∼39% -456%
Samsung Galaxy Tab S4 (Samsung Browser 8.0)
2644.7 ms * ∼29% -311%
Apple iPad Air 2 (Safari 9.0 Mobile)
2396 ms * ∼26% -272%
Apple iPad 6 2018 (Safari Mobile 11.3)
1025.5 ms * ∼11% -59%
Apple iPad Pro 10.5 2017 (Safari Mobile 10)
972.7 ms * ∼11% -51%
Apple iPad Air 2019 (Safari Mobile 12)
643.5 ms * ∼7%
Average Apple A12 Bionic (603 - 644, n=5)
622 ms * ∼7% +3%

* ... smaller is better

Games - A lot of potential but also very unwieldy

The Apple A12 GPU ensures a lot of graphics power and allows playing all the games from the App Store without any problems, without having to resort to any compromises. We looked at several games more closely with our GameBench partner and did not run into any real limitations here. The demanding PUBG Mobile game shows itself mostly stable in terms of the frame rates at the highest resolution, and we were only able to notice a few micro stutters in the beginning.

However, we perceived the size and weight of the tablet as a shortcoming during gaming. If you hold it in your hands, it can become very heavy in the long run. Anyone who simply wants less display area should take a look at the iPad Mini 5, which has the same SoC but is significantly more manageable. The speakers produce a fairly powerful sound and the sensors work without a hitch. 

PUBG Mobile
PUBG Mobile
Dead Trigger 2
Dead Trigger 2
PUBG Mobile
0102030405060Tooltip
; 0.11.0: Ø39 (6-59)
Dead Trigger 2
0102030405060Tooltip
; 1.5.5: Ø59.3 (56-60)

Emissions - An iPad with an audio port

Temperatures

The surface temperatures of the Apple iPad Air (2019) give no reason for concern at any time and even under constant load only rise to a maximum of 36.1 °C (97 °F), remaining at a similar level (35.9 °C, 96.6 °F) at the hotspot in a contact measurement.

We evaluate the behavior of the SoC during constant load with the GFXBench battery test, during which the corresponding benchmark scenario is repeated 30 times. In the older T-Rex test, the Apple tablet has no problems, delivering a constant performance until the end. However, in the Manhattan test, which uses the Metal API under iOS, things look different, and the performance of the SoC drops almost continuously, losing almost 10%.

T-Rex
Manhattan 3.1
Max. Load
 32.8 °C
91 F
32.3 °C
90 F
35.4 °C
96 F
 
 32.2 °C
90 F
33.8 °C
93 F
36.1 °C
97 F
 
 30.7 °C
87 F
32.6 °C
91 F
35.4 °C
96 F
 
Maximum: 36.1 °C = 97 F
Average: 33.5 °C = 92 F
33.3 °C
92 F
34.1 °C
93 F
32.9 °C
91 F
33.1 °C
92 F
33.6 °C
92 F
34.7 °C
94 F
32.5 °C
91 F
33.3 °C
92 F
32 °C
90 F
Maximum: 34.7 °C = 94 F
Average: 33.3 °C = 92 F
Power Supply (max.)  41.4 °C = 107 F | Room Temperature 21.5 °C = 71 F | Voltcraft IR-260
(±) The average temperature for the upper side under maximal load is 33.5 °C / 92 F, compared to the average of 30.7 °C / 87 F for the devices in the class Tablet.
(+) The maximum temperature on the upper side is 36.1 °C / 97 F, compared to the average of 34.8 °C / 95 F, ranging from 22.2 to 51.8 °C for the class Tablet.
(+) The bottom heats up to a maximum of 34.7 °C / 94 F, compared to the average of 34.3 °C / 94 F
(+) In idle usage, the average temperature for the upper side is 30.5 °C / 87 F, compared to the device average of 30.7 °C / 87 F.

Speakers

Pink-noise levels
Pink-noise levels

The two speakers of the Apple iPad Air (2019) are positioned on both sides of the Lightning connection and produce a relatively saturated sound. However, we cannot really speak about stereo sound here, but the second speaker serves to still produce sound when the other one happens to be covered in portrait mode.

The reproduction of the mids is particularly positive and even the lower mids are still audible. While the upper bass range is still present, it is hardly audible. While we experience the sound reproduction as quite pleasant with surprising depth in our test, the high tones are a bit too strong, causing them to be very present and bringing a tinny sound at high volumes.

Those who want to use external speakers can either use Bluetooth or the 3.5 mm audio port. The latter can be recommended for music lovers, since it offers a wider sound spectrum, provided you use the corresponding sound sources. 

dB(A) 0102030405060708090Deep BassMiddle BassHigh BassLower RangeMidsHigher MidsLower HighsMid HighsUpper HighsSuper Highs2033.5372523.732.93125.830.74022.231.95033.129.26326.629.98024.235.810023.347.312521.854.416022.561.220018.26025016.361.631515.663.440015.166.850014.168.763013.97080013.672.4100014.873.1125013.674.6160013.676.6200013.875.7250014.377.8315014.680.2400014.582.2500014.683.2630014.886.8800014.684.41000014.980.11250014.973.91600014.970.2SPL26.692.5N0.892.9median 14.8median 73.1Delta1.58.131.641.125.436.925.335.832.934.533.630.731.632.128.429.92742.520.850.12253.221.357.520.863.921.265.219.465.819.567.217.769.117.967.317.872.617.375.717.477.916.777.717.274.418.275.117.970.717.667.917.763.917.855.917.956.418.158.818.260.93084.61.359.1median 17.9median 65.81.37.5hearing rangehide median Pink NoiseApple iPad Air 2019Apple iPad Pro 10.5 2017
Frequency diagram (checkboxes can be checked and unchecked to compare devices)
Apple iPad Air 2019 audio analysis

(+) | speakers can play relatively loud (92.5 dB)
Bass 100 - 315 Hz
(-) | nearly no bass - on average 15.1% lower than median
(±) | linearity of bass is average (8.6% delta to prev. frequency)
Mids 400 - 2000 Hz
(+) | balanced mids - only 2.8% away from median
(+) | mids are linear (3% delta to prev. frequency)
Highs 2 - 16 kHz
(±) | higher highs - on average 9% higher than median
(+) | highs are linear (4.4% delta to prev. frequency)
Overall 100 - 16.000 Hz
(+) | overall sound is linear (13.4% difference to median)
Compared to same class
» 9% of all tested devices in this class were better, 3% similar, 88% worse
» The best had a delta of 7%, average was 22%, worst was 50%
Compared to all devices tested
» 9% of all tested devices were better, 3% similar, 87% worse
» The best had a delta of 3%, average was 21%, worst was 53%

Apple iPad Pro 10.5 2017 audio analysis

(+) | speakers can play relatively loud (84.6 dB)
Bass 100 - 315 Hz
(±) | reduced bass - on average 10.4% lower than median
(±) | linearity of bass is average (12.3% delta to prev. frequency)
Mids 400 - 2000 Hz
(±) | higher mids - on average 5.8% higher than median
(+) | mids are linear (4.3% delta to prev. frequency)
Highs 2 - 16 kHz
(±) | higher highs - on average 6.6% higher than median
(±) | linearity of highs is average (7% delta to prev. frequency)
Overall 100 - 16.000 Hz
(±) | linearity of overall sound is average (15.2% difference to median)
Compared to same class
» 15% of all tested devices in this class were better, 6% similar, 79% worse
» The best had a delta of 7%, average was 22%, worst was 50%
Compared to all devices tested
» 16% of all tested devices were better, 4% similar, 80% worse
» The best had a delta of 3%, average was 21%, worst was 53%

Power Management - A long battery life and slow charging

Power Consumption

The power consumption of the iPad Air (2019) is surprisingly high during idle operation, particularly when compared to the iPad Pro 10.5, which has a brighter display. Under load, the two Apple tablets are at a relatively similar level. The Galaxy Tab S4 shows itself to be more energy-efficient in all scenarios, but has to be content with a smaller battery.

The bulky charger turns out to be a slight annoyance, since its power capacity is sized very tight and it needs a lot of time (about 6.5 hours) to completely recharge the tablet. In addition, the modular charger develops relatively high surface temperatures. Under load, we measured up to 41.4 °C (106.2 °F). While this is still no reason for concern, the charger might get really hot in summer when temperatures are high. 

Power Consumption
Off / Standbydarklight 0.01 / 0.16 Watt
Idledarkmidlight 2.18 / 6.4 / 6.43 Watt
Load midlight 7.48 / 10.65 Watt
 color bar
Key: min: dark, med: mid, max: light        Metrahit Energy
Apple iPad Air 2019
8134 mAh
Apple iPad Pro 10.5 2017
8134 mAh
Apple iPad 6 2018
 mAh
Samsung Galaxy Tab S4
7300 mAh
Huawei MediaPad M5 10.8 Pro
7500 mAh
Apple iPad Air 2
 mAh
Power Consumption
6%
-27%
32%
-19%
14%
Idle Minimum *
2.18
1.44
34%
2.2
-1%
1.76
19%
3.3
-51%
1.2
45%
Idle Average *
6.4
6.12
4%
7.8
-22%
4.22
34%
4.2
34%
5.1
20%
Idle Maximum *
6.43
6.14
5%
7.9
-23%
4.25
34%
7
-9%
5.4
16%
Load Average *
7.48
8.55
-14%
12.6
-68%
4.52
40%
10.4
-39%
7.9
-6%
Load Maximum *
10.65
10.62
-0%
12.8
-20%
7.35
31%
13.8
-30%
11.1
-4%

* ... smaller is better

Battery Life

The battery life turns out to be very good and is even longer than what the manufacturer specified. Compared to the two Android competitors, the Apple tablet lasts slightly longer, but both of the Android devices also have smaller batteries.

Our tests with an adjusted display brightness (150 cd/m²) offer the best comparison. In the WLAN test, the iPad Air (2019) lasts for more than 12 hours, which is slightly longer than the comparison field. In the video loop, the Galaxy Tab S4 is able to last slightly longer. 

For a tablet, the iPad Air offers a really good battery life, regardless of the usage scenario. Only the long charging times are annoying, but they can be shortened by using a more powerful charger. 

Battery Runtime
Idle (without WLAN, min brightness)
25h 01min
NBC WiFi Websurfing Battery Test 1.3 (Safari Mobile 12)
12h 18min
Big Buck Bunny H.264 1080p
11h 24min
Load (maximum brightness)
3h 34min
Apple iPad Air 2019
8134 mAh
Apple iPad Pro 10.5 2017
8134 mAh
Apple iPad 6 2018
 mAh
Samsung Galaxy Tab S4
7300 mAh
Huawei MediaPad M5 10.8 Pro
7500 mAh
Apple iPad Air 2
 mAh
Battery Runtime
4%
-9%
-8%
-8%
-9%
Reader / Idle
1501
2036
36%
1227
-18%
1254
-16%
1364
-9%
H.264
684
629
-8%
735
7%
629
-8%
562
-18%
WiFi v1.3
738
693
-6%
714
-3%
495
-33%
670
-9%
Load
214
199
-7%
185
-14%
245
14%
220
3%
212
-1%
WiFi
630

Pros

+ good workmanship
+ very fast SoC
+ audio port
+ good IPS display
+ long battery life
+ Pencil support

Cons

- only few accessories included
- charger is heavy and weak
- expensive accessories

Verdict - The iPad Air as an artificial stopgap

In review: Apple iPad Air (2019)
In review: Apple iPad Air (2019)

While the Apple iPad Air (2019) positions itself between the iPad Pro 11 and the iPad (2018), it directly competes against the current high-end Android tablets in terms of the price. In contrast to the entry-level iPad, it offers a larger, completely laminated display, more storage, and it has a more powerful SoC for an additional premium of 200 Euros (~$226).

In terms of technology, Apple has delivered another great tablet that does not have any real faults and uses the technology proven in previous years. However, for users the model portfolio becomes harder to grasp with this, which is made even more difficult by there being several Pencil generations simultaneously. 

The Apple iPad Air (2019) combines a modern SoC with proven technology.

The main complaints about the tablet are probably the sparseness of the included accessories and their additional costs, and the long charging times. However, this hardly matters in everyday operation. With the low entry-level price, Touch ID, and its audio port, the iPad Air is still an attractive product.

Apple iPad Air 2019 - 04/11/2019 v6
Daniel Schmidt

Chassis
83%
Keyboard
71 / 80 → 89%
Pointing Device
95%
Connectivity
35 / 65 → 54%
Weight
84 / 40-88 → 91%
Battery
94%
Display
90%
Games Performance
76 / 68 → 100%
Application Performance
82 / 76 → 100%
Temperature
91%
Noise
100%
Audio
71 / 91 → 78%
Camera
59 / 85 → 70%
Average
79%
91%
Tablet - Weighted Average

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> Notebook / Laptop Reviews and News > Reviews > Apple iPad Air (2019) Tablet Review
Daniel Schmidt, 2019-04-13 (Update: 2019-04-14)