The internet was abuzz with the iPad Air's launch earlier this month, and as expected, it packs a lot of upgraded tech compared to its predecessor, the 4th-gen iPad. We bet, together with consoles like the PlayStation 4 and Xbox One, it's a hot item among the techie community.

The iPad Air has a faster A7 processor
This is a big plus, since the processor handles the computations for the device’s software chores. To make things even speedier for the tablet, a new “co-processor” has been added by Apple, which will handle apps and programs that make use of your arms’ movements, helping reduce the load on the main processor.

In terms of weight, the iPad Air is thinner and lighter than the iPad 4 at less than 500 grams. This means you won’t have any problems lugging it around in, say, your girly shoulder bag. You’ll also get a thinner bezel (the space between the display’s side and the device’s physical boundary), which makes the whole device look a bit fresher and more “next-gen”--even though the display remains at 9.7 inches in size and 264ppi (pixels per inch) in resolution.

We get it, the iPad Air is definitely a gem of a device. It’s a load of good news for the iPad line, too, and will continue its winning ways. Speaking of the iPad line, this made us wonder: how far has the iPad gone through the years? We decided to do a little bit of backtracking to have a better idea about the journey of Apple’s wonder tablet. Take a look at this game changer's timeline below.




1. First-generation Apple iPad (iPad 1)
The first product in Apple’s iPad line, the first-gen iPad brings many of the features of the iPhone and the iPod into one device. It allowed users to play games, surf the net, use apps, and play music and videos, making it a huge hit with the mobile crowd.

Launch date: January 27, 2010

Hardware highlights:
Display: 9.7 inches, 1,024 x 768 resolution
Processor: 1GHz Apple A4
Memory: 256MB
Storage: Up to 64GB
Wi-Fi: Yes
3G: Depends on the model

2. Second-generation Apple iPad (iPad 2)
What do you do when you have a successful first foray? Follow it up, of course! This is what Apple did by releasing the iPad 2, the first iPad with a built-in camera, much to the delight of the selfie-snapping audience.

Launch date: March 5, 2011

Hardware highlights:
Display: 9.7 inches, 1,024 x 768 resolution
Processor: 1GHz dual-core A9
Memory: 512MB
Storage: Up to 64GB
Wi-Fi: Yes
3G: Yes, depends on the model
Camera: 0.3-megapixel front camera, back camera with 720p HD video recording

3. Third-generation Apple iPad (The New iPad)
The first iPad to have a Retina Display (a tech which makes individual pixels look almost invisible to the naked eye), the iPad 3’s main trump card is its potential in the graphics department--that and its ability to offer blazing-fast Internet speeds via 4G LTE connectivity.

Launch date: March 7, 2012

Hardware highlights:
Display: 9.7 inches, 2,048 x 1,536 resolution Retina Display
Processor: 1GHz dual-core A9
Memory: 1GB
Storage: Up to 64GB
Wi-Fi: Yes
3G: Depends on the model
4G: Depends on the model
Camera: 0.3-megapixel front camera, 5-megapixel back camera with 1080p HD video recording


4. Fourth-generation Apple iPad (iPad 4)
The release of the iPad 4 marks the first time in Apple’s history where the company unveiled more than one tablet in a year. Like the not-so-new New iPad (a.k.a iPad 3), it came with Retina Display, although it also boasted more upgrades in other departments.

Launch date: October 23, 2012

Hardware highlights:
Display: 9.7 inches, 2,048 x 1,536 resolution Retina Display
Processor: 1.4GHz dual-core A6X
Memory: 1GB
Storage: Up to 128GB
Wi-Fi: Yes
3G: Depends on the model
4G: Deepends on the model
Camera: 1.2-megapixel front camera with 720p HD video recording, 5-megapixel back camera with 1080p HD video recording

5. First-gen Apple iPad Mini (iPad Mini)
As a direct response to other gadget brands’ efforts to go with small tablets, Apple unveiled the first-generation iPad Mini on October 2012. Don’t let its size fool you--it may look like a tablet mini-me, but it has the hardware to compete even against its larger competitors.

Launch date: October 23, 2012

Hardware highlights:
Display: 7.9 inches, 1,024 x 768 resolution
Processor: 1GHz dual-core A9
Memory: 512MB
Storage: Up to 64GB
Wi-Fi: Yes
3G: Yes, depends on the model
Camera: 1.2-megapixel front camera, 5-megapixel back camera

6. Fifth-generation Apple iPad (iPad Air)
The newest of the bunch, the iPad Air boasts the best hardware in the iPad line, a fresher look, and a thinner profile. It also has a lightweight frame (hence the name), making it very easy even for petite girls to carry it around with them.

Launch date: October 22, 2013

Hardware highlights:
Display: 9.7 inches, 2,048 x 1,536 resolution Retina Display
Processor: 1.4GHz dual-core
Memory: 1GB
Storage: Up to 128GB
Wi-Fi: Yes
3G: Depends on the model
4G: Depends on the model
Camera: 1.2-megapixel front camera with 720p HD video, 5-megapixel back camera with 1080p HD video

7. Second-generation Apple iPad Mini (iPad Mini 2)
Announced almost exactly a year after the first iPad Mini, the iPad Mini 2 brings the same small size to the table and--as expected--better hardware. It was launched on the same day as the iPad Air and, together with its bigger bro, leads Apple in the ever-competitive global tablet wars.

Launch date: October 22, 2013

Hardware highlights:
Display: 7.9 inches, 2,048 x 1,536 resolution
Processor: 1.3GHz dual-core A7
Memory: 1GB
Storage: Up to 128GB
Wi-Fi: Yes
3G: Depends on the model
4G: Depends on the model
Camera: 1.2-megapixel front camera with 720p HD video, 5-megapixel back camera with 1080p HD video

(Photo by Wind.com.my via Flickr Creative Commons)

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