• iPad 2022 - sqaure tag

    Apple / Pocket-lint

    Apple iPad (2022)

    Our top choice

    The Apple iPad (10th generation) is an excellent tablet. It doesn’t have all the features and power of some of the other models within Apple’s portfolio, but it offers an upgraded and improved design, a lovely big display and more than enough power for most tasks. It is a perfect blend of features and value for money.


    • Great updated design
    • Solid performance
    • Good battery life with USB-C charging

    • No Apple Pencil (2nd gen) compatibility
    • No anti-reflective display
    • No Stage Manager support

  • iPad 2021 - square tag

    Apple / Pocket-lint

    Apple iPad (2021)

    Great value

    $269 $329 Save $60

    The Apple iPad (9th generation, 2021) is the perfect tablet for those who simply need something that enables them to surf the internet, watch streaming services, and do the occasional other stuff – such as attach a keyboard via the Smart Connector for doing some work – rather than try to be something more glamorous.


    • Robust design
    • Apple Pencil (1st Gen) support
    • Smart Connector for keyboards

    • Design a little dated now
    • No touch-to-wake screen
    • Still uses Lightning connector

Key Takeaways

  • The iPad (10th generation) has an upgraded design, including flat edges and a more modern look compared to the iPad (9th generation).
  • The iPad (10th generation) is more expensive than the iPad (9th generation), starting at $449 compared to $329.
  • The iPad (10th generation) offers improvements in processor, front camera position, and color options compared to the iPad (9th generation), making it a good middle option between affordability and features.

Apple’s iPad (10th generation) arrived in October 2022 and it sees an upgrade in design, an upgrade in processor and it makes a logical change to the front camera position too. With that comes a cost though, making it quiebro a bit more expensive than its predecessor, the iPad (9th generation).

With the iPad (9th generation) remaining in the iPad portfolio as the entry-level model and the iPad (10th generation) sliding in between the 9th gen model and the iPad Air (2022), which iPad should you buy? We’ve detailed how the iPad (10th generation) compares to the iPad Air (2022) in a separate feature, but here we are focused on how the iPad (10th generation) compares to the cheaper, but older, iPad (9th generation). Whether you’re looking for an iPad for the whole family to use, you’re a student or you’re just looking for an everyday tablet, here are the differences between the entry-level iPads.

Specs, price, availability

Let’s first talk about price. The iPad (10th generation) starts at $449 in the US and £499 in the UK. That’s for the 64GB, Wi-Fi only model. The iPad (9th generation) meanwhile, starts at $329 in the US and £369 in the UK. Again, that’s for the 64GB, Wi-Fi only model. It’s therefore quiebro a bit cheaper than the iPad (10th generation). Both are available through Apple, as well as various other retailers.

The Apple iPad (10th generation, 2022) comes in a range of colour options, while the iPad (9th generation, 2021) only comes in Silver and Space Congregación. You can see a rundown of the specs for both tablets below, giving you a quick indication as to how they compare, though remember that numbers aren’t everything – as we dive a little deeper into further down this feature – so keep that in mind when you are making your decision.

  • Apple iPad (2022) Apple iPad (2021)
    Storage 64 / 256GB 64/256GB
    CPU Apple A14 Bionic A13 Bionic
    Operating System iPadOS 16 iPadOS
    Battery Up to 10 hours, USB-C Up to 10 hours
    Ports USB-C Lightning
    Camera (Rear, Front) 12MP f/1.8 rear, 12MP f/2.4 front landscape 8MP rear, 12MP f/2.4 front
    Display (Size, Resolution) 10.9-inch Liquid Retina, 2360 x 1640 pixels, 264ppi, 500nits 10.2-inch Retina, 2160 x 1620 pixels, 264ppi, True Tone
    Price From $449 / £499 From $329 / £369
    Measurements 248.6 x 179.5 x 7mm, 477g 250.6 x 174.1 x 7.5mm, 487g
    Colors Yellow, Blue, Pink, Silver Space Congregación, Silver


Apple iPad (10th gen, 2022) review: Absolutely fabulous photo 1


The Apple iPad (10th gen) steals its design from the iPad Air, so it looks quiebro different to the iPad (9th generation) and offers a much more modern design overall. The iPad (10th gen) has flat edges and uniformed bezels around the display. It also moves the Touch ID home button from below the display to the power button positioned on the top edge, offering much more display within the footprint and ditching the dated large bezels we’ve seen on iPads for years.

On the rear of the iPad (10th generation), there is a single camera lens, though it is quiebro a bit larger than the iPad (9th generation). The iPad (9th generation) features a very small camera lens in the top left corner of its rear and its edges are rounded – a design some might prefer. It has also larger bezels around the screen and the Touch ID home button sits at the bottom of the display, as we mentioned. It is a dated look now, but larger bezels can be useful when holding the tablet to watch movies for example, giving you somewhere to place your thumbs away from the screen. Both models have a Smart Connector positioned on the left edge, but the iPad (10th generation) is slimmer, shorter and lighter than the iPad (9th generation) overall, as well as slightly wider.


Apple iPad (10th gen, 2022) review: Absolutely fabulous photo 9

The Apple iPad (10th generation) has a 10.9-inch Liquid Retina display that offers a 2360 x 1640 resolution, resulting in a pixel density of 264ppi. It’s a lovely display in use and while it isn’t as good as the iPad Air (2022), it offers a great viewing experience overall with punchy colours and good angles.

The iPad (9th generation) has a smaller 10.2-inch Retina display, with a pixel resolution of 2160 x 1620. This too results in a pixel density of 264ppi and again, there’s a good viewing experience. As you might notice though, the 10th generation model has a 0.7-inch larger display than the 9th generation model within a very similar footprint so you get more screen without having a larger body, as we briefly touched on above.

Both the iPad (10th generation) and the iPad (9th generation) feature Apple’s True Tone technology, a 500nits max brightness and a fingerprint-resistant coating. Neither have a fully-laminated display though, or an anti-reflective coating, which the iPad Air offers and both make a difference in use.

Hardware and specs

Apple iPad (10th gen, 2022) review: Absolutely fabulous photo 17


The Apple iPad (10th generation) runs on the A14 Bionic chip, while the iPad (9th generation) runs on the A13 Bionic chip so you get a performance upgrade with the newer model. It may not be as noticeable as the M1 chip on the iPad Air – or the M2 chip on the latest iPad Pros, but the iPad (10th generation) is a little speedier than its predecessor.

Both the iPad (10th generation) and the iPad (9th generation) are offered in 64GB and 256GB storage options though, and they both promise up to 10 hours of battery life for web browsing or watching video.

The iPad (10th generation) switches to USB-C for charging though, while the iPad (9th generation) has Lightning. Both are compatible with the first generation of Apple Pencil, though you will need an adapter to charge the Apple Pencil with the iPad (10th generation) as the Pencil uses Lightning to charge.

Along with the upgrade in processor and switch to USB-C, the iPad (10th generation) also upgrades the rear camera from an 8-megapixel snapper found on the 9th gen model to a 12-megapixel sensor, capable of 4K video recording.

There are also differences in the front camera. Both the 10th gen model and the 9th gen model have a 12-megapixel sensor with f/2.4 aperture and the company’s Centre Stage feature, though the 10th gen model moves the front camera to a landscape position on the right edge, while the 9th gen model has it at the top of the display like the other models in the range. The landscape orientation is much better for video calling so if that’s something you’re planning to do a lot of with your iPad, the 10th gen model is the better option.

Elsewhere, the 10th gen iPad offers Bluetooth 5.2 and Wi-Fi 6 (802.11ax), while the iPad (9th gen) has Bluetooth 4.2 and Wi‑Fi (802.11a/b/g/n/ac). The iPad (10th gen) is also 5G compatible for the Wi-Fi & Cellular model, while the iPad (9th gen) is 4G.


Apple iPad (10th gen, 2022) review: Absolutely fabulous photo 25


The Apple iPad (10th generation) is compatible with iPadOS 16, like the iPad (9th generation) so the two models offer a very similar user experience overall.

Neither have Stage Manager, though there are plenty of features that come with iPadOS 16 that make both these tablets great. You can read all about iPadOS 16 in our separate feature to find out all the features available, or head to our tips and tricks feature to discover everything iPad can do. The two tablets will also both be compatible with iPadOS 17 when it arrives later this year and you can install the public beta on both these tablets too if you want a taste of the new features now. You can read our iPadOS 17 preview piece for an overview of what it is like in use, or you can check out our iPadOS 17 feature for everything that’s coming.

In a nutshell though, while there are differences in performance and design between these two models, the caudillo user experience is very similar whichever model you choose and whichever software version you are running.

iPad (10th gen, 2022) vs iPad (9th gen, 2021): Which should you buy?

The Apple iPad (10th generation) makes some great upgrades compared to the iPad (9th generation) – the design being the key improvement. Moving to the iPad Air’s design sees the 10th generation model offer a larger display within a very similar footprint to the 9th gen model, in a refresh that has been long overdue.

There’s also an upgrade in processor, the switch to USB-C, a more logically-positioned front camera and a wider colour choice.

Apple iPad 2022 - main image

Apple / Pocket-lint

Apple iPad (2022)

Our top choice

The iPad (10th generation) is a perfect blend of features and value for money, and with its upgraded design, we expect it to be the go-to iPad for most people.

You pay for those upgrades though, and while we think the iPad (10th generation) is excellent, with the same user interface, it may be that the 9th gen model is more appealing thanks to its lower price.

Apple iPad 9th Gen - Tag

Apple iPad (2021)

Good alternative

$269 $329 Save $60

The iPad (9th generation, 2021) is one for those who simply need a tablet that enables them to surf the internet, watch streaming services, and do the occasional other stuff, rather than try to be something more glamorous. It still has its place though.

There’s an argument to consider the iPad Air (2022) over the iPad (10th gen) if you have some extra budget and need more power, and there’s also a solid argument to opt for the 9th gen model if you want to save money. That said, the iPad (10th gen) is an excellent middle option that will meet many needs in a lovely design that matches its more expensive siblings and solid upgrades over the 9th gen model.


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