Tablet showdown: iPad Air 2 vs Nexus 9


Apple has released the much-anticipated iPad Air 2, updating its beloved iPad Air with an all-new look and beefed-up specs. But how does the iPad Air 2 compare to Google's just-released Nexus 9 tablet?

Let's break down the specs and take a look.



There's not a great deal separating the two devices on this front. The iPad Air 2 has almost an extra inch of real estate on its rival, but pays for the additional screen space with a lower pixel density. Apple's number boasts a decent 264ppi, while the Nexus 9 just about trumps it with 281ppi.


Apple has bumped up the camera specs on the iPad Air 2, from 5 to 8 megapixels, with a whole host of "image optimisation" tools. If you were hoping for a higher resolution selfie-snapper, though, you're out of luck. Apple has stuck with its proprietary FaceTime camera, a 1.2-megapixel piece -- though let's remember megapixels aren't everything in this race. The Nexus 9 packs the same primary snapper, while its selfie camera is a tiny bit better on paper, at 1.6 megapixels. Neither device particularly impresses in these stakes.

Size & weight

Apple has made the iPad Air 2 even thinner than its extremely svelte predecessor. At 6.1mm thick, the iPad Air 2 is definitely one of the thinnest tablets on the market. The Nexus 9 isn't exactly overweight, but its extra 1.8mm of thickness definitely shows. Both weigh in around the 430g mark, with Google's tablet shaving off a few grams, but you won't exactly have trouble lugging either device around.


The iPad Air 2 is built for the catwalk. It's a beauty. Apple hasn't changed the design from its predecessor, because it hasn't needed to. It's slim, sexy and very desirable. HTC's done a great job with Google's new piece too, bringing some glam to the Nexus range. It's difficult to look anywhere past Apple's creation though.

Check out the full specs table below.

  Apple iPad Air 2 Google Nexus 9 


Screen size 9.7in 8.9in
Resolution 2,048 x 1,536 2,048 x 1,536
Pixel density 264ppi 281ppi

Processor and battery

Family Apple A8X Tegra K1
CPU  TBC Denver
Cores  TBC Quad-core
Clock speed  TBC 2.3GHz
GPU  TBC Kepler DX1
Battery  TBC 6,700mAh
Claimed battery time Up to 10h

Storage and memory

Internal storage 16GB / 64GB / 128GB 16GB / 32GB
microSD No No


Rear 8-megapixel 8-megapixel
Video 1,080p 1,[email protected]
Front 1.2-megapixel 1.6-megapixel


Standard 4G LTE 4G LTE
Wi-Fi Wi-Fi 802.11 a / b / g / n / ac Wi-Fi 802.11 a / b / g / n / ac
Bluetooth v4.0 v4.0
Integrated wireless charging No


Size 6.1mm thin (rest TBC) 228.2 x 153.7 x 7.9mm
Weight 437g 425g
Operating system iOS 8 Android 5.0 Lollipop
Price (SIM-free) 16GB - $499/64GB - $599/128GB - $699  32GB - $649/64GB - $699
Availability 17 October 2014 (pre-order) October 2014

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