iPad iPad 3 to iPad Air 2; is there a really big difference?

Discussion in 'iPad' started by marc55, Nov 16, 2014.

  1. marc55 macrumors 6502a


    Oct 14, 2011
    We currently have an iPad 3, and are thinking about getting the iPad Air 2.

    For those who have jumped to the Air 2, will we notice a really big difference?

    Thank you
  2. TripleP macrumors newbie

    Mar 27, 2012
    I went from an iPad 3 to the Air 2 and would say yes, the difference is significant. Performance-wise, the speed difference is huge. Physically, the lighter weight and thinner, narrower form factor are equally impressive. My mother in law brought her iPad 3 to the house today, and after spending a few weeks with the Air2, the 3 felt like a slab of lead.

    My suggestion - sell your 3 (I got $300 for my 32 GB wifi locally) and put the money towards an Air 2. You'll be glad you did.
  3. Rodster macrumors 68040

    May 15, 2007
    Yes there's even a big difference just between the iPad 3 and Air 1.
  4. simonelwell macrumors newbie

    May 18, 2012
    Speed mainly

    Sure the ipad air 2 is thin - but the main thing for me (also upgraded from a 3) is the speed. With ios8 and subsequent app updates some of my software was noticeably laggy. The new air2 has fixed that. If you don't experience slowing software, the upgrade may be a disappointment.
    Did I mention - it's thin.
  5. Traverse macrumors 604


    Mar 11, 2013
    I upgraded from an iPad 3 to an Air 2 and ended up returning the Air 2. The speed bump was mainly noticeable with iOS navigation.

    I used the two side by side and most apps only opened a few seconds faster. The main app that experienced a night and day difference was Safari.

    I ended up returning the Air 2 because it just didn't do anything my iPad 3 couldn't. I was underwhelmed.
  6. TechZeke macrumors 68020


    Jul 29, 2012
    Rialto, CA
    Well, you are going from an iPad to an iPad. If the apps you use do not require the extra performance, then the iPad 3 is fine. However, I don't know about you, but my iPad is dreadfully slow. It lags just typing this post now.

    I can't take it anymore. I might be buying an Air 2 Friday.
  7. Simacca macrumors 6502a


    Jul 31, 2008
    UK, South East.

    I did this and won't be looking back. The speed difference all round is definitely worth it.
  8. Traverse macrumors 604


    Mar 11, 2013
    Mine lags just as bad, but I still can't justify $1,000 on a new one*

    *128GB Wifi, Smart Cover, AppleCare+, Logitech Ultrathin keyboard cover, tax.
  9. GoingDark macrumors 6502

    Nov 2, 2013
    If you're a light iPad user (Facebook, email, some web browsing) you won't notice much of a difference in performance, but even just physically holding it, the Air 2 feels so much nicer in the hand than the iPad 3 it's not even close.

    Also, if you're a moderate or heavy user (games, lots of web browsing, photo apps etc.), you'll notice a huge performance difference.
  10. Nismo73 macrumors 6502a

    Jan 4, 2013
    I'm typing from my 3 since I let my Air 2 go down to 0% battery to do a full recharge, and this is like trying to hold a stone tablet. Holy cow is the 3 huge in comparison after you use the Air 2 after a while.

    Also it's weird to see the screen with dust on it as it looks like you're looking into a fish tank with how far down the actual screen is to the glass compared to the Air 2.
  11. s2mikey macrumors 68020


    Sep 23, 2013
    Upstate, NY
    Right. Any of the ipads that used the thicker chassis will feel quite heavy compared to the Air line. The air 2 is even thinner and lighter than than the air 1 although not by much.

    Still, the Air line are a big leap versus the older gen ipads.
  12. iPadDad macrumors 6502


    Sep 8, 2014
    According to the benchmark tests the difference between the iPad 3 and iPad Air 2 is...... over 900% increase in performance!

    The difference is intergalactic!
  13. Alex225 macrumors regular

    Nov 2, 2012
    Well I have an iPad Air 2 which I'm not allowed to open until Xmas as I'll get my butt kicked by my mum as she's gone halves on it as a present..........but I have an iPad 3 and my girlfriend has the Air 2.

    The Air 2 feels significantly slimmer, lighter and faster. In fact I find my Mini 2 a hell of a lot faster than my iPad 3. The 3 runs ok (iOS 8) but it's not as smooth with animations and it seems to chug along a fair bit.

    I'd say going from the 3 to the Air 2 is a logical step, you've used the 3 for a fair old time so got your value from it. The Air 2 is a huge step up so it's a worthy upgrade.
  14. CalMin macrumors 6502a


    Nov 8, 2007
    There's no real difference - especially if you are talking about what you can do with an iPad 3 vs an Air. All your programs run like they did before and there are no new apps which are iPad Air 2 exclusives that I know of. It's like when my niece upgraded from an iPhone 5S to an iPhone 6. She called me excitedly and asked about what new stuff she could do with her phone - I could only think of 240fps video and she couldn't believe she had spent all that money just for that:rolleyes:

    So, it's the same basic experience but smoother and less choppy. It's also a lot lighter in your hand. It also has lightning cable vs the older 30pin dock connector. Those things may or may not be important to you.

    I sold my 3 for $345 and bought a used Air 1 for $350 via Craigslist. It's the best $5 I've ever spent. There are a lot of Air 1's available on craigslist right now. I will move up to the Air 2 when the software makes use of the extra ram and CPU/GPU.
  15. AppleRobert macrumors 603

    Nov 12, 2012
    Sell the 3, wait for BF Air 2 sale? Maybe you can save on the accessories as well.

    I could have made pancakes on the underside of the 3 with its heat.
  16. NorthSeaBeach macrumors regular

    Oct 29, 2014
    The Hague
    Depends on what you're doing on your ipad. I tested them side by side in the Applestore and decided there and than that I couldn't justify the price for the new one. I was not that impressed tbh and the trade-offs of thinner-thinnest put me off also. It was a little faster but not so much to justify upgrading. I left my 3 on iOS 7.1 though and just browse (Chrome, can't stand it that the statusbar doesn't retract on Safari) and watch youtube. For that the 3 is still fine. If you game a lot, the extra horsepower might come in handy. I'm going to wait for the Air 3.
  17. funnyboy88 macrumors regular

    Jun 18, 2009
    Hmm, the Facebook app is TERRIBLE on the iPad 3. On my fiancée's Mini 2 and my iPhone 5s, which are both A7 devices, the Facebook app is buttery smooth.

    So yes, even for light use, you will see a huge difference. My iPad 3 is a stutter machine.
  18. Radiating macrumors 65816

    Dec 29, 2011
    It's s huge difference, the anti reflective coating, the better camera, and most of all the lack of an air gap makes the screen just amazing.
  19. bushido Suspended


    Mar 26, 2008
    Well I just updated to the air 2 (annoying name btw) cuz I was about to throw my ipad 3 against the wall. It is SO slow now especially when u got an iPhone 6 and you know how fast things could be. Typing on the 3 was a pain in the ass as well as opening apps and laggy animations.

    I still got 290€ for it. Not too bad
  20. Kiimora macrumors 6502a


    Sep 11, 2014
    London UK
    They are 2 worlds apart; iPad 3 weighs a ton whilst Air 2 is barely there. In terms of speed, responsiveness, screen resolution, fluidity, faster processor, security ( Touch ID), more memory. You need to buy & use it to believe it!

    I upgraded mine only because I wanted the new product range , also the weight was a total turn off.

    I sold mine too#
  21. GlenK macrumors 6502a


    Aug 1, 2013
    St. Augustine, FL
    I agree. Went from 3 to Air 2 and the difference is night and day. The Air 2 is an amazing device.
  22. Italianblend macrumors 68000


    Mar 21, 2011
    If you were running anything past ios 6 then the difference will be pretty big. If you stuck with ios 6, the difference is negligible. The only reason I did it was because I got a great trade-in deal at best buy. Walked away paying about $270 for one.

    In the end, it's just an ipad. It doesn't' really do anything that the 3 didn't do except for touch ID.
  23. highdefjunkie macrumors 6502


    Apr 12, 2010
    I went from a 2nd Gen iPad Mini to the new Air 2 and definitely can tell a difference in performance.
  24. lyceumHQ macrumors 6502a


    Aug 4, 2010
    Also very tempted by this. I bought the 3 on launch day and it's been great but since the upgrade to 8.1 browsing is painfully slow and the experience overall has dropped.

    The air 2 seems like it would give the most future proofing. More ram. Better CPU. So hopefully it will still run well in two years when we hit iOS 10.

    I'm just not sure I can justify paying £400 for it.

    Plus a jailbreak is essential since I only really use it for moviebox and XBMC. So without a jailbreak it's basically an expensive paperweight (for my personal needs).

    So I'm torn between waiting for BF deals and trying to grab one, and hoping it's running 8.1 and not anything newer. Or just getting a £200 android tab and never having to worry about the jailbreak issue and saving £200. I know it sounds like a no brainer. But I love the iPad.
  25. Rodster macrumors 68040

    May 15, 2007
    I'm running Showbox on Android and it's awesome. I don't know if Showbox and Moviebox are one and the same. I even got Showbox to run on the Amazon Kindle Fire HD.

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