All iPads Still debating between the iPad Air 4 and the iPad Pro. Coming from the iPad Air 2 (with usage explained)

Which one should I choose?


  • Total voters
    69

etkuo

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Oct 1, 2014
8
0
Hello everyone,

I am still debating between the iPad Air 4 and the iPad Pro (either 2020 or waiting till 2021).

I currently own an iPad Air 2, so it's been awhile since I have upgraded my iPad.

My primary usage for the iPad is only browsing, streaming, reading and some light gaming (non-action based games). I don't intend to use the iPad with the Apple Pencil or the Magic Keyboard. I use my Macbook Pro as my primary work device so the iPad is only used when I am out or when I am in bed.

My pretty light usage tells me that the iPad Air 4 is way more than sufficient for me. The big difference between the iPad Air 4 and the iPad Pro for me would only be:
4 speakers, 120Hz ProMotion (I wonder whether these two are really that noticeable during my day to day use);
and FaceID. (Seems to be a lot easier to just swipe and unlock the iPad than having to use TouchID on the button)

However, I tend to like getting the latest and greatest with my tech toys. Seeing how I don't often upgrade my iPad, should I just go big and go straight for the iPad Pro? I am looking at a price difference of about $180CAD (iPad Air 4 Wifi+Cellar 256GB w/AppleCare+ vs iPad Pro Wifi+Cellar 128GB w/AppleCare+).

So I guess long story short, my question is does the 4 speakers, 120Hz display and FaceID worth $180 extra for just browsing, streaming, reading and light non-action based gaming...

Thanks.
 

AutomaticApple

macrumors 601
Nov 28, 2018
4,712
1,807
Massachusetts
So I guess long story short, my question is does the 4 speakers, 120Hz display and FaceID worth $180 extra for just browsing, streaming, reading and light non-action based gaming...
It depends on how big of a difference itll make to your usage. For general web browsing, the 120Hz display is very noticeable. Itll make you despise 60Hz displays.
 

zhenya

macrumors 604
Jan 6, 2005
6,732
3,350
If I was looking at two displays and one was 60hz and the other was 120hz and the difference was only $180, I would buy the 120hz no question. The other stuff is a bonus, although I do think on the iPad that FaceID really works well - no need to orient to find a touchid button.

Some people will honestly have a tough time telling the difference though, and $180 may mean a lot more to someone else than it does to me.
 

ericwn

macrumors 603
Apr 24, 2016
5,458
3,476
180 CAD isn’t much calculated over multiple years. I’d go with the Pro.
 

Digitalguy

macrumors 6502a
Apr 15, 2019
605
424
It depends on how big of a difference itll make to your usage. For general web browsing, the 120Hz display is very noticeable. Itll make you despise 60Hz displays.
Not for me, my 10.5 pro and S7+ don't make me dispise anything. It's a nice bonus, but I am perfectly ok with 60hz as long as the ipad is fast. I move from 120 to 60hz devices with zero issues....
 

BeatCrazy

macrumors 68020
Jul 20, 2011
2,247
991
Pro. I have had all the iPads, including all the Pros. Those 4 speakers are really nice and it's hard to go back to no Promotion.
 
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Broadus

macrumors 6502a
Oct 26, 2011
942
508
Upstate SC
I think a good case can be made for either the 2020 11” iPad Pro or the Air 4 — not so much for waiting for the 2021 iPP. I’m waiting for Air 4 reviews and comparisons to hear how much difference the Pro’s ProMotion and the quad-speakers make. It that’s fairly negligible, I’ll go with the Air 4. My tablet needs are quite light.
 

Marlon DLTH :)

macrumors 6502
Mar 4, 2020
342
642
Is 64gb enough for you? If it’s not, you’ll need to get the 256gb option, which is $750. In that case, buying the Pro is a better option.
 
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Crow_Servo

macrumors regular
Feb 17, 2018
237
187
America
I’ve changed my vote several times now, but I think the 2020 Pro is probably your best choice coming from an Air 2. It’s better in every way and it’s an exciting upgrade.

The Air 4 would be a solid choice too, but it doesn’t go all the way for the best video/audio experience. The jury is out on how good the stereo landscape speakers will be on the new Air, but we already know the Pro’s quad speakers are perfectly capable. I’ve seen ProMotion and like the idea, but I’ve never owned a device with it. I’m guessing if you like the soap opera effect setting on TVs, it’s the same appeal.

Plus, Face ID is possibly more convenient than Touch ID on the top button, but there hasn’t been a consensus on that either.
 

etkuo

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Oct 1, 2014
8
0
Thanks everyone for the replies! :)

Is 64gb enough for you? If it’s not, you’ll need to get the 256gb option, which is $750. In that case, buying the Pro is a better option.
64GB is not enough for me. So for the iPad Air 4 I have to get the 256GB option, where as for the iPad Pro I am ok with just 128GB. My $180CAD difference is between the iPad Air 4 256GB vs iPad Pro 128GB.

Your best bet is Gen 8. Throw in some AirPods and watch a movie. Seems like that is what you are using it for.
I definitely want the bigger screen and the edge to edge design from the Air/Pro. I have been eyeing the edge to edge design since the Pro came out in 2018, but at the time I didn't feel the need to upgrade my Air 2 yet. Plus I live by myself and would much prefer to stream with speakers rather than wearing an AirPod in my ears.

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

So anyways, looks like most of you suggest the 2020 Pro over the Air 4, or wait for some reviews for the Air 4 on the stereo landscape speakers and TouchID on the button and then decide.

Just curious though, why not wait for the 2021 Pro though? If it comes out around March 2021 I can wait. If it won't come out until Fall 2021 then I will probably make my decision between the Air 4 and the 2020 Pro soon.
 

Mike82

macrumors regular
Aug 16, 2013
128
147
Not for me, my 10.5 pro and S7+ don't make me dispise anything. It's a nice bonus, but I am perfectly ok with 60hz as long as the ipad is fast. I move from 120 to 60hz devices with zero issues....
Totally agree. Of course there's a visible difference between 60Hz and 120Hz, but when I change from one to the other, I forget about it within a minute.
 

Sarbun96

macrumors member
Jul 12, 2020
32
9
If you can go for the Pro, do that. I know the Air is shiny and new, but I read that the Pro has more graphics cores. So I suppose really if you put it into computer terms, it’s like ’This years i5’ or ’Last years i7’?
 

Freida

macrumors 68030
Oct 22, 2010
2,758
3,731
I would definitely wait in your case. Few months till march is not that much and seeing your usage you can make it happen. I have Air 2 and I'm upgrading to Air 4 but thats only because I'm ok with 64gb wifi only so I don't need to wait. In your case, just wait. Why getting 2020 which will be outdated in just few months. A14 is a beast so A14X will be insane

Thanks everyone for the replies! :)


64GB is not enough for me. So for the iPad Air 4 I have to get the 256GB option, where as for the iPad Pro I am ok with just 128GB. My $180CAD difference is between the iPad Air 4 256GB vs iPad Pro 128GB.


I definitely want the bigger screen and the edge to edge design from the Air/Pro. I have been eyeing the edge to edge design since the Pro came out in 2018, but at the time I didn't feel the need to upgrade my Air 2 yet. Plus I live by myself and would much prefer to stream with speakers rather than wearing an AirPod in my ears.

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

So anyways, looks like most of you suggest the 2020 Pro over the Air 4, or wait for some reviews for the Air 4 on the stereo landscape speakers and TouchID on the button and then decide.

Just curious though, why not wait for the 2021 Pro though? If it comes out around March 2021 I can wait. If it won't come out until Fall 2021 then I will probably make my decision between the Air 4 and the 2020 Pro soon.
 

Fishels

macrumors regular
Feb 25, 2015
201
53
Your best bet is Gen 8. Throw in some AirPods and watch a movie. Seems like that is what you are using it for.
I disagree with this for one reason only. Someone coming from an Air 2 is going to immediately think a non laminated display feels cheap. The base iPads simply don’t feel very nice to touch as silly as that might sound. It is a touchscreen device..... that’s like the most important thing in my personal opinion.
 

PFox78

macrumors member
Jan 2, 2013
75
36
I was facing a similar situation and just picked up the Pro. It’s a beast. Absolutely incredible in every way.
 
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edwrap

macrumors member
Nov 7, 2012
69
105
I'm in a similar situation, also deciding over the past few weeks whether to upgrade from an Air 2. I've been tempted to get a Pro, but I'm not going to, unless there's a very good deal on one. Here are my reasons:

- 120hz doesn't matter that much to me. Smoother scrolling is neat, but 99% of my usage is either viewing a static screen or watching a video. I don't game, or expect to use the pen.
- I doubt 4 speakers is that much better than the 2 landscape ones in the new Air. In any case, even the latter will be a million times better than the Air 2.
- I don't mind FaceID on iPads, since I use it almost exclusively at home (and un-masked), but I still prefer TouchID given the choice. The only circumstance in which I would prefer FaceID is if I used the iPad a lot while cooking, or with dirty/wet hands in general, which I don't.
- This is a personal qualm, but I don't want to "reward" Apple with my money for a minimal update. The 2020 Pro is basically the same as the 2018 Pro (higher base storage and extra RAM doesn't matter to me, let alone LiDAR). I could've bought a 2018 Pro and enjoyed it for an extra year and a half, or whatever the gap was between the two.
- Related to the previous, the upcoming iPad Pro update in the spring is supposed to be a big one, with miniLED on the 12.9". If I really wanted to spend that much on an iPad, I would wait and see what those look like.

Now, I don't think the new Air is a perfect device, by any means. I'd be happier if it was a hundred dollars cheaper. But, I think if you need an iPad now, that's the one to get (assuming you wouldn't be satisfied with the basic iPad). As for me, iOS 14 actually made my Air 2 a bit snappier, so my current plan is to try to hold onto it for another year.
 

sanity

macrumors member
Oct 23, 2007
51
5
I’ve been holding out for the new IPad Air but this thread has me on the thinking about a pro. Coming from an iPad Pro 2017 that I managed to recently mangle (looks horrible but still works). 🤔
 
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