The iPad Air: One month in, a tote-worthy tablet

After more than a year and half of mediocrity, Apple finally made its largest iPad worth hauling around. That’s my impression after using the Air for a month.

I say mediocrity because the iPad 3 (the first Retina iPad, released in March of 2012) and the iPad 4 (released in October of 2012), were compromised by the extra weight and thickness needed to support the early Retina displays. (Dare I say kludgy about an Apple product?)

Specifically, Apple’s early Retina iPad displays required a relatively large backlight apparatus and, concomitantly, more battery power to keep the display lit for the roughly 10 hours of rated battery life.

With the Air, you get a slim, one-pound design with the same — or better — battery life, faster processor, and great screen.

That’s all I will say on those subjects, however, because I risk repeating ad nauseam what many reviews have said already.

The one-month mark: It takes a lot of day-in-and-day-out use to really get a feel for a device.

In the case of a tablet, that means, for me, tossing it (preferably gently) onto sofas and beds, dropping it into bags, toting it into coffee shops, occasionally hauling it out of a backpack during a hike, using it in the car (preferably not while driving), doing work at airports (or any place where you may have a lot of time to kill), and, of course, using it on the sofa. >more

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