Apple today announced a new CPU for the eighth generation iPad, the A12 Bionic. A12 Bionic, featured in the base iPad model, offers a 40 percent faster CPU and 20 percent faster GPU than seventh-generation iPads, and Apple says that also means the A1
Just as many analysts and leaks predicted, Apple introduced an iPad Air during the livestream event “Time Flies” today. The new iPad Air comes about a year and a half after the last update, but it does more than the previous update did: it overtakes the overall design of the device. The iPad Air will be available in October, starting at $ 599. It comes in five colors: silver, space gray, pink gold, green and sky blue.
With estimates from the more expensive iPad Pro, the iPad Air now has drastically reduced frames, no home button and rounded screen edges. However, it does not have the front-facing TrueDepth sensor that iPad Pro uses for Face ID authentication. Rather, it introduces something new for Apple devices – though not new for mobile devices in general. Apple designed a new version of touch ID, integrated in the top button (which does not look different). Below the button is a laser-cut sapphire lens and a custom sensor to read users’ fingerprints.
IPad Air gets the new A14 Bionic CPU, built on 5nm process technology. It is a six-core CPU with two high-performance cores and four less powerful, more efficient cores for simpler background tasks. The A14 Bionic offers a performance improvement of 30 percent GPU compared to previous generations, and Apple says that it provides twice as much graphics performance as regular laptops.
It also offers a 16-core neural engine for machine learning performance – which can include many features used in graphics editors, voice assistants and more – as well as a new DJ application that allows “air-scraping” gestures created over the iPad.
The iPad Air will also include a USB-C connector, so you can connect devices such as external cameras and a 60 percent faster LTE modem. The camera has been updated to 12MP with 4K video and improved video stabilization. The speaker system has also been redesigned, with stereo delivery in landscape mode.
Also in the design area, iPad Air now has a connector that is compatible with the Magic Keyboard peripherals that the company launched for iPad Pro a few months ago. The peripheral has a trackpad (trackpad support was added to iPadOS last year) and about the same type of keyboard found on Apple’s desktop keyboard of the same name. Magic Keyboard costs $ 279, and Smart Keyboard Folio for iPad Air costs $ 179.