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  • Cheryl Tan

iPad 10th Gen Review: This Might Be The Best iPad For A Lot Of People!

Apple’s iPad lineup is… Well, quite varied, I’d say, with something for almost everyone. And the iPad 10th Gen that came out last year? I’ve been using it for almost three months now, and I definitely think this is the best iPad for a lot of people.

In my opinion, which iPad you get depends on what you’re planning to use the iPad for. Many people just want a bigger screen for reading, watching videos and maybe playing games. And that, in all honesty, doesn’t really require a lot of power. So that’s where this iPad comes in.

Design

But let’s talk design first. The iPad 10th Gen is the first in the base iPad lineup to come with the squared-off design, which means no more curved edges. Everything’s all sharp lines and angles now, which brings the design aesthetic in line with the iPad Pro, iPad Air and iPad Mini. Personally, I like it a lot, so this is great. The bezels are even all around, there’s no home button and while it looks like every other iPad, the iPad 10th Gen comes in a few fun colours like the iPad Air, so that’s nice.


There are two big changes to the design here, and first, let’s talk about the front camera. Before this, all the front cameras were on the top of the iPad when you held it in portrait mode, which means that when you’re using the iPad in landscape, you get an off-centred camera, which makes video calls and such a tad awkward. Now, the front camera is on the long edge of the screen, which makes it more natural when you’re using the iPad in landscape mode during calls. This is a bit of a problem that I have when using my iPad Pro for work calls, but even though I’m crossing my fingers for this feature to appear on the iPad Pro, I’m not 100% sure it’ll happen. Regardless, the camera does come with Centre Stage so you’ll always be in frame even if you’re moving around on a call.


Moving down to the actual display, it’s a new 10.9-inch Liquid Retina display that’s quite similar to the previous one, but it’s slightly bigger and it’s bright enough to use outdoors as well. Because there’s no home button, the bezels are thinner as mentioned. One thing to note is that if you scrutinise the display, you might actually notice that there’s a gap between the glass and the display. Not a big thing, just something to note. It won’t impact your day-to-day usage at all, but yes, not quite as premium as the Air or Pro, but that’s to be expected.


The second change is at the bottom of the iPad. Apple has gradually been moving away from Lightning ports on the iPads, and the iPad 10th Gen gets that same upgrade to USB-C, which is nice, although it then introduces a problem with accessories, namely the Apple Pencil. Because the iPad 10th Gen still only supports the Apple Pencil first gen, and that only charges via Lightning. So Apple’s solution is to introduce a dongle for charging and pairing, and yes, while Apple is bundling the dongle with new purchases for the Apple Pencil first gen, it’s just… Not optimal. I’d have loved to have seen support for Apple Pencil gen 2 here, but yeah.


Up top, the top button has been updated with Touch ID capabilities, which is very nice, and yeah, at 477 grams, this iPad is just a hair heavier than the iPad Air.


Inside though, Apple has made some tradeoffs. Instead of getting the M1 or M2 chip, the iPad 10th Gen is running on the A14 Bionic, which, is a decent chip, but there’s no way you’re going to be looking at this iPad to run heavy video editing software or intense apps like ProCreate and the likes. But for everyday tasks, Netflix, checking and replying to emails, browsing the web and playing games, it’s more than enough.

iPad 10th Gen Accessories

For a lot of people, the iPad isn’t their main work device. It’s something for content consumption, downloading movies and shows to watch on the go, stuff like that. At most, typing up documents, replying to emails. And this iPad works for that. Better still, Apple has introduced the new Magic Keyboard Folio accessory, which is a two-piece back cover and keyboard. The back cover comes with a nice kickstand and the keyboard is magnetically attached to the iPad. The keyboard itself has nice 1mm travel keys, excellent typing experience, no issues here at all. But what’s really nice, is that Apple has given us the function row on this keyboard. Brightness control, mic mute, media controls, volume controls, it’s all there on the top and it’s super convenient.

Battery Life

With a 10-hour battery life, the iPad holds enough charge to get through a day of moderate use easily. And of course, iPadOS 16 is available, although the base iPad doesn’t support great features like Stage Manager, external displays and the like, and that’s perfectly fine! Because people who are looking to get this, most likely aren’t planning to use external displays with it. And that’s the beauty of the iPad 10th Gen.

iPad 10th Gen Price

I’ve been recommending this tablet to people who need a larger screen, be it for games or watching shows, but who don’t need all that extra processing power that comes with the Air or Pro and who doesn’t want to pay extra cash, since this model starts at S$685 or US$449. And honestly, that’s like 80% of the people out there. So yes, great job on a good base iPad refresh, Apple. Just, maybe rethink the Apple Pencil first gen issue. I’m sure there’s space to put the magnetic charging connector somewhere.

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