Earlier this month – at Apple’s Peek Performance event – the fifth generation of the iPad Air was unveiled, packing features and perks such as the Apple-designed M1 chip and 5G support.
But if you have placed an order for this latest version of the sought-after tablet from Cupertino, and you’re tempted to grab a few ‘extras’ for it, what else do you need to do or know in order to ensure your hard-earned isn’t wasted?
Here are a few questions to ask yourself when you come to shop for accessories for your iPad Air 5.
First of all… are you sure you definitely have a fifth-generation iPad Air?
It may seem a silly thing to suggest, but depending on exactly how you obtain your new iPad Air, you may need to be doubly sure it’s definitely an iPad Air 5 that you have.
After all, while outlets like AppleMagazine have been using the term “iPad Air 5” to distinguish this latest tablet from its predecessors, Apple doesn’t officially use such numbering – simply referring to the device as the “iPad Air” – so making sure certain accessories are compatible can get a bit confusing.
The good news is that determining your specific model of iPad should be as simple as flipping around your device and looking for the model number at the bottom right side. You will also be able to see the model number in the Settings app, under General and then About.
Make a note of the model number and look it up online, and you will hopefully have an iPad Air 5. But if it turns out to be an iPad Air 4 instead, that shouldn’t be a disaster from an accessories-buying perspective, given the lack of change in design from the iPad Air 4 to the iPad Air 5. This means a lot of accessories compatible with the earlier model should still work with the new one.
Will you actually need the accessories – and if so, what for?
In today’s world in which there are increasing worries about the cost of living and how much money we have available to spend on ‘inessential’ items, you won’t want to blow some of your limited funds on iPad Air extras that you won’t use.
If, for instance, you expect to be carrying around your device from one place to another, a durable protective case is as close to ‘essential’ as an iPad accessory gets.
Some other users of the iPad Air 5, though, will probably be using it as a mobile workstation – and if that describes you, we suggest you keep a close lookout for the right keyword case and stand.
Do you only want official Apple accessories, or are you open to other brands’ offerings?
We aren’t going to suggest that there’s a universally ‘right’ and ‘wrong’ path to take when it comes to choosing brands from which to buy iPad Air 5 accessories.
Understandably, many buyers of the new tablet might feel more confident sticking to what Apple itself offers, given that this should mean fewer worries about compatibility and reliability. But there can also be a hefty premium for official Apple products, compared to alternatives from third-party brands – even if not all such third-party brands rate very well from a quality perspective.
As a general rule, it’s a good idea to try to buy from brands that you genuinely feel you can trust – either because you have previous first-hand experience of their products, or because other people you trust have praised their products. Online reviews could greatly help you here.
How much are you prepared to pay for iPad Air 5 accessories?
We’ve touched on the subject of cost a few times already in this piece; it really is something a lot of people are fretting about right now. And we’re sure you’ll already be familiar with the concept that a higher-cost accessory isn’t guaranteed to be of superior quality to a lower-cost one – as well as that some cheaper accessories really are a case of ‘you get what you pay for’.
So, as we said above, it’s crucial that you do your research into the relevant brands and products out there. But it’s no less important to set a budget, and keep to that budget. Some of the tips we shared yesterday on saving money when buying Apple products could assist you here.
There you go – four big questions to ask yourself when you are in the market for accessories and extras for your fifth-generation iPad Air. With various excellent protective cases, keyboards, type-C hubs, and more available for the latest version of this popular Apple tablet, a few wise purchases at this stage are likely to be ones you will be thankful for later.