July 18, 2024

The iPad Air A Great Travel Device

iPad Air - Apple Photo
iPad Air – Apple Photo

I have to admit. The iPad Air is a very attractive piece of tech – but I was a bit ambivalent about upgrading. I have been using my iPad 3 for some time now. It has served me well for daily use at home as well as on journeys across the United States and Asia. It still works as well as the day I purchased it. Well, to be honest, it works “almost” as well. With the installation of the latest iOS 7 upgrade I did begin to notice a bit of a lag in areas such as loading websites and also keyboard response when using my bluetooth Zagg keyboard. But still, overall, it was and is working great and doing all I need. Yet, at the same time I am a bit of a tech junkie (they say acknowledging a problem is good so I am on record) and the iPad Air had a certain appeal. Ultimately, as the title of this article suggests, I pulled the trigger and purchased a new iPad Air.

Why did I make this choice? Well, getting a new iPad allowed me to make a few modifications to my gear and it also provided me with improvements in several areas. For example, I have mentioned the slight lag in response which emerged with the iPad 3. The iPad Air has a much more powerful processor. And I can happily report that my new Air is really fast and shows no lag whatsoever.

My new iPad Air is the Space Gray version with 128 GB memory and is WiFi only. I like the color because, with all my photography use, I find that viewing and showing photos and videos on a screen with a black border is much more pleasing. In fact when I previously purchased my iPad three I initially selected the white version. I tried it for a day before  swapping for the black model for that very reason. My iPad 3 was a 64 GB model and I found that it was really filling up with photos. And now that I am adding more video work I figured that more memory would definitely be better so I maxed the memory at 128 GB. With my upgrade to the Air I decided to forgo cellular capability. My iPad 3 had Verizon cellular radios but I found that I really never (and that is truly “never”) used it. If I ever needed to make a connection out of a WiFi environment I simply used the hotspot feature of my iPhone and that worked great. So I figured I would go this time with a WiFi only iPad.

The iPad is truly light weight. This is something that I knew about going in and the difference in feel is noticeable. The iPad 3 weighs in at around 652g and my new Air is @469g. It is thinner by 20% (7.5mm versus 9.4mm) from previous versions as well. But what I hadn’t realized was that, while the screen size is the same as before and the length of the Air is the same, it is 20% more narrow (down from 186mm to 169.5mm) . While these differences might not seem like much as you read them, the experience is quite different. For me, the Air definitely looks, feels, and appears smaller than previous models.

There is, however, a price that comes with some of these changes. The different size and form factor means that none of my old iPad 3 gear will work with the iPad Air. So, depending on your specific needs, if you get an Air you will likely need a new smart cover and a new case and a new keyboard. Have you ever read the children’s book “If Give A Mouse a Cookie?” It’s one of those types of things. (And if you haven’t read it – well it’s a kids book, a quick read, check it out.)

mouse cookie


Now that I have been using and working with my iPad Air (typing this article for example) I can say that I am really pleased with my decision to upgrade. The title says it all –  “iPad Air A Great Travel Device.” The smaller, lighter, and faster iPad Air is a notable step up from previous models and will serve the traveler well.


Travel With Air ……………….. Enjoy The Adventure!

Dr.B, The PhotoTrekker


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