Apple iPad Air 2 Review: Should You Upgrade?

Performance: CPU & Web Browsing

Underneath the hood of the iPad Air 2 is a scorching fast custom A8X System-on-Chip (SoC) with a tri-core processor and six-core graphics, along with 2GB of RAM and, in this instance, 64GB of built-in storage. Spoiler alert -- the A8X chip is a beastly part, as we've already seen. It's also key in separating the iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus from the iPad Air 2, leaving no mistake as to which mobile product packs the most performance punch. Let's have a look.

CPU testing
iOS and Android CPU testing

Apple iPad Air 2 SunSpider

The iPad Air 2 jumps out a fast start to climbing to the top of the SunSpider chart. This is a measurement of web browsing and JavaScript performance, and while the A8X plays a role here, we're just as excited about the 2GB of DDR3 RAM. That's twice as much as found in the original iPad Air, and not only does it result in faster performance, it allows for power surfing, as we like to call it -- opening several tabs without having to reload them all the time or bearing witness to crashes.

Apple iPad Air 2 Browsermark

Rightware's Browsermark test is another web-based performance analyzer. It focuses on page loading and resizing, conformance testing for HTML5, network speed, and performance in the context of JavaScript, HTML5, WebGL, Canvas, CSS3/3D, and more.

Given the number of different tests and the types of things being analyzed, the A8X plays a bigger role here than it does in SunSpider. As a result, the iPad Air 2 crushes the competition with a top score of 5,047, well above the closest competitor, which happens to be the original iPad Air with a score of 3,809.

Apple iPad Air 2 Geekbench

Another benchmark, another victory for the the iPad Air 2 and its spunky A8X SoC. What's important to note here is not only did the iPad Air 2 come out on top, but it led the pack by a wide margin, including NVIDIA's SHIELD tablet.

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