Google Nexus 9 vs Apple iPad Air 2

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Introduction


The holidays are just right around the corner, so consumers will no doubt be in full force shopping for the best of the best for their loved loves. In the tablet space, we’ve been fortunate to see the arrival of two spectacular offerings very recently – the iPad Air 2 and the Nexus 9. When it comes to performance and usefulness in accomplishing all sorts of tasks, there’s no arguing that these two come racing to the scene with a whole lot of goodies to make us all drool. At the end of the day, though, which of the two proves to be the stronger, more profound selection?

Design

Metal meets plastic

Apple’s design with the iPad Air 2 is a meticulous one, since it employs favorable, premium materials that help to deliver a package that’s sophisticated and elegant in design. Quite simply, its aluminum body feels significantly sturdier than the matte plastic finish of the Nexus 9. Even though the two are relatively easy to handle with comfort and ease, we can’t overlook the engineering marvel of the iPad Air 2’s incredibly thin 0.24-inch profile – it makes the 0.31-inch thinness of the Nexus 9 look thick by comparison!

Neither tablet is outfitted with an extraordinary set of hardware features, as they mostly offer the usual essentials around their trims – like their power buttons, 3.5mm headset jacks, volume controls, and charging ports. However, we will point out the iPad Air 2’s Touch ID finger print sensor, which offers us another option of securing the tablet. Meanwhile, the Nexus 9’s front-firing dual speakers are appreciated, as they project audio towards us, instead of against.



Display

Two gorgeous tablet screens make it difficult to side with just one of them

Having a fully-laminated display, the iPad Air 2’s 9.7-inch 1536 x 2048 Retina Display sheds some layers in the process to maintain its impressive thinness – one that’s truly commendable. However, the Nexus 9’s smaller, 8.9-inch 1536 x 2048 IPS LCD display actually holds up equally well in most departments, allowing it to match Apple's proposition.All in all, there aren’t major differences in terms of detail with their display, thanks to their sky-high resolutions. Things are considerably more interesting when we look at their color reproduction, as both exhibit slight inaccuracies and imperfections that makes comparing them kind of fun. Color temperature is around 7000 K with both devices, meaning their blues are slightly more accentuated than their reds, but this kind of deviation is more than tolerable. However, the Nexus 9's white point has a noticeable shift towards the purple hues, which can be easily seen in the display benchmark charts below. Meanwhile, the iPad Air 2 manages to hold on to a more natural-looking white. When all is said and done, neither IPS screen is flawless, but they are both a joy to view.

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