Should You Buy an Entry-Level iPad?

The 10th-generation iPad is Apple’s most cheap and well-liked tablet, and it has the A14 Bionic CPU, an entirely new design with flat edges and a variety of colour choices, a bigger display, a USB-C connector, and more. However, it is more expensive than the previous iteration.

The 10th-generation iPad, which debuted in October 2022, is one of Apple’s newest models and is just beginning its development cycle. The entry-level iPad is typically updated by Apple once a year, but no new model is in the works right now. Therefore, now is a wonderful moment to get an iPad.

The price of the ninth-generation iPad, which debuted in September 2021, is still $329, or $170 cheaper than the price of the tenth-generation iPad. It boasts a more traditional appearance with a smaller display, a Lightning connector, and an A13 Bionic processor.

Users seeking a smaller iPad with higher specs should have a look at the iPad mini, which begins at $499, even though the iPad is Apple’s most affordable iPad model for people who desire a combination of functionality and price.

On the other hand, the $599 iPad Air, which comes with the M1 processor, Stage Manager capabilities, and upgraded display technology, is an iPad with greater specs.

Apple’s 2022 Tenth-Generation iPad

The A14 Bionic processor, a USB-C connector, a 10.9-inch display, a 12-megapixel back camera, and many other upgrades over the previous model were all included in Apple’s introduction of the 10th-generation iPad in October 2022. The device also included a new design and many colour variations.

The 10th-generation iPad is available in Silver, Blue, Pink, and Yellow and has the same squared-off appearance as the iPad mini and iPad Air. The front-facing camera is now located on the iPad’s landscape edge for the first time, while Touch ID has replaced the Home button on the tablet.

Similar to the iPad Air, the 10th-generation iPad has a 10.9-inch Liquid Retina display with True Tone technology, 500 nits of brightness, and a resolution of 2360 by 1640 pixels.

The A14 Bionic processor from Apple, which was initially shown in the 2020 iPad Air and iPhone 12 series, is now found in the iPad. It is around 20% quicker than the A13 processor that was in the previous generation’s entry-level iPad, but being slower than the M1 chip in the iPad Air.

The 12-megapixel camera on the iPad has been greatly upgraded, and it now supports 4K video recording, Wi-Fi 6, and 5G connection on cellular variants.

Only the first-generation Apple Pencil is compatible with the iPad, and it needs an adapter to be charged and paired. The Magic Keyboard Folio, which has full-size keys with 1mm of travel, a multi-touch trackpad, a function row, a two-piece design, and a kickstand rear cover, is also included with the new iPad.

Available for purchase through the Apple online store and Apple retail locations, the iPad has a starting price of $449 for 64GB of storage. Both the Magic Keyboard Folio and the Apple Pencil are available separately for $99 and $249, respectively.

Apple’s 2021 Ninth-Generation iPad

The beginning price for Apple’s ninth-generation iPad, which was originally released in September 2021, remains at $329. The A13 Bionic chip, True Tone, a superior front-facing camera with Center Stage, and other features were also unveiled.

With an aluminium shell that is little thicker than the iPad Air and iPad Pro versions, the ninth generation iPad maintains the same appearance as earlier generations.

The 9.1-generation iPad, like the seventh- and eighth-generation models, maintains a 10.2-inch display, which provides a larger viewing surface than the 9.7-inch iPad that was previously available. Following the 8.3-inch iPad mini, the 10.2-inch iPad has Apple’s smallest iPad display. The 10.2-inch display boasts approximately 3.5 million pixels and 500 nits of brightness, with a resolution of 2160 x 1620 at 264 pixels per inch.

The A13 Bionic chip from Apple, which debuted in 2019 with the iPhone 11 and iPhone 11 Pro, is included in the iPad. It is substantially quicker than the A12 processor that was in the previous generation’s entry-level iPad, but being slower than the M1 chip in the iPad Air.

The iPad also has a 12-megapixel Ultra-Wide front-facing camera, a significant improvement over the 1.2-megapixel FaceTime camera with a 122o field of view and an f/2.4 aperture. Center Stage is another feature of the front-facing camera that keeps people in the picture during video conversations.

An 8-megapixel camera with 1080p video recording, Gigabit-class LTE for cellular variants, a “all-day” 10 hour battery life, Touch ID, Apple Pay compatibility, and 802.11ac WiFi are just a few of the other features of the iPad. Support for the original Apple Pencil is offered, and a Smart Connector is provided so that the iPad may be used with the Smart Keyboard Folio for the 10.2-inch iPad.

With starting costs of $329 or $299 for Apple’s educational institution clients, the ninth-generation iPad maintains its positioning as a cheap, entry-level tablet for educational institutions and individuals on a budget.

The iPad is offered in Silver and Space Gray and can be purchased through the Apple online store and Apple retail locations for $329 for 64GB of storage. Both the Smart Keyboard and the Apple Pencil are available separately for $99 and $159, respectively.


Apple has found bugs that prohibit users from accessing the Apple Music catalogue, Apple Music preferences, or Sync Library after restoring from a backup and that, on “a small number of devices,” might cause widgets to return to their default settings.


The 10.2-inch display, thin side bezels, and wider top and bottom bezels on the ninth-generation iPad from 2021 are the same as those on the previous model from that year’s eighth generation.

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There is a Touch ID Home button at the bottom, and this is the final iPad to have one as well as the only one with thick bezels. The iPad mini, iPad Air, and iPad Pro are some of Apple’s other iPad models that all feature full displays, thin bezels, and no Home button.

The affordable iPad is made of metal, and Apple has discontinued the 2020 Gold colour in favour of Space Gray or Silver. The tablet has a FaceTime HD camera on the top, a single-lens camera on the rear, a two-speaker audio system, twin microphones, and a Touch ID Home button in addition to a Lightning connection on the bottom.

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The dimensions of the 9.8-inch (250.6-mm) long, 6.8-inch (174.1-mm) broad, and 0.29-inch (7.5-mm) thick, 1.07-pound (487-gram) ninth-generation iPad remain unchanged from the previous model. The iPad 9 is compatible with add-ons like the Smart Keyboard thanks to a Smart Connector on the side.


The 10.2-inch Retina display on the ninth-generation iPad features a resolution of 2160 by 1620 pixels at 264 pixels per inch and a brightness of 500 nits. The 2021 iPad is the first to include True Tone capabilities in comparison to the previous model.

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With True Tone, there is less of a contrast between the colour of the display and the ambient light since the temperature of the display adjusts to be warmer or cooler depending on the lighting in the environment you are in.

The display contains an oleophobic layer that resists fingerprints and a touch sensor that enables it to be used with the original Apple Pencil. The ninth-generation iPad lacks Wide colour support, an anti-reflective coating, and laminated construction to bring the LCD closer to the glass compared to Apple’s more costly iPad models.

Apple Pencil

The low-cost iPad is compatible with the first Apple Pencil. The Apple Pencil is supported by Apple’s complete iPad series, albeit only this low-cost iPad supports the original Apple Pencil, while all other current-generation iPads support the second-generation Apple Pencil.

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The Apple Pencil is a stylus intended to provide unrivalled accuracy and interaction with the iPad while also providing a natural feel comparable to using a pen or pencil on paper.

The Apple Pencil has pressure and location sensors that enable it to detect a variety of forces for pressure-sensitive drawing and writing. Two tilt sensors in the Apple Pencil’s tip identify the position and angle of the hand holding it, allowing shading methods to be used.

The Apple Pencil has a 12-hour battery life and charges using the device’s built-in Lightning port at the bottom. A 15-second charge provides a half-hour of power, ensuring that it is always ready to go when required.

A13 Bionic Chip

Apple included an improved A13 Bionic CPU to the ninth-generation iPad, which is an improvement over the A12 Bionic processor utilised in the eighth-generation device.

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The A13 processor was first used in the iPhone 11, which was launched in September 2019. According to Apple, the A13 provides up to 20% better GPU performance than the A12.


The ninth-generation iPad has 3GB of RAM and no upgrades over the previous model.


Apple sells the iPad in 64GB and 256GB capacities, with no 128GB model available.

Battery Life

The iPad is equipped with a 32.4 watt-hour lithium-polymer battery that lasts for up to 10 hours when surfing the web on WiFi or watching video.

Rear Camera

Apple made no camera enhancements, and the ninth-generation iPad uses camera technology that is many years old.

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There is an 8-megapixel back camera with an aperture of /2.4. It has Live Photos, auto HDR, 43-megapixel panoramas, Burst mode, and Timer mode, but it lacks the sophisticated features of the iPad Pro camera. There is also no backlight.

The camera on the iPad is capable of recording 1080p HD video at 30 frames per second and 720p Slo-mo video at 120 frames per second. It lacks 4K video capture, enhanced video stabilisation, and continuous focusing as compared to the iPad Pro.

FaceTime Camera

Apple has made significant enhancements to the front-facing FaceTime camera, and it is the key new feature included to the ninth-generation iPad. It has a 12-megapixel /2.4 Ultra-Wide lens with a 122-degree field of view and enables HDR for images as well as 1080p video recording at 25, 30, or 60 frames per second.

Auto picture stabilization, burst mode, time-lapse video, and Cinematic video stabilization are all supported.

This Ultra-Wide lens, like the iPad Pro and iPad mini, is compatible with Center Stage. When you’re on a FaceTime video chat, Center Stage is meant to keep you in focus and ideally framed. The wide-angle front-facing camera captures more of your surroundings, while the A13 chip keeps you front and centre even as you move about.

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If more than one person is on the call, the camera zooms out to make sure everyone is seen and included in the discussion. Though built for FaceTime, Center Stage also works with third-party video programmes such as Zoom.

Other Features

Touch ID

The Touch ID fingerprint sensor is incorporated into the Home button on the front of the ninth-generation iPad. Touch ID is used to unlock the iPhone, access applications, and make Apple Pay payments.

WiFi, LTE, and Bluetooth are available

The iPad has Bluetooth 4.2 and 802.11ac Wi-Fi with rates up to 866 Mb/s. The iPad WiFi + Cellular edition contains Gigabit-class LTE and the Apple SIM for connecting to cellular data networks in over 100 countries.


A three-axis gyroscope, an accelerometer, an ambient light sensor, and a barometer are all included in the iPad.

How to Buy

The 10.2-inch iPad is available in Silver and Space Gray from the Apple Store online and at Apple retail shops. The 64GB storage option costs $329, while the 256GB storage option costs $479.

A Wi-Fi + Cellular variant is also available, with 64GB of storage costing $459 and 256GB costing $609. The Apple Pencil, which works with the 10.2-inch iPad, costs $99. It can be purchased online or at Apple retail shops. The Smart Keyboard is available for $159 USD.

IPad Buyer’s Guide

If you’re trying to decide which iPad from Apple’s current tablet range is ideal for you, be sure to check out our iPad Buyer’s Guide, which goes over each of the available choices and helps you figure out which iPad will match your individual requirements.

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