Camera

Seriously, you won’t be disappointed by the quality produced by their cameras – they’re almost evenly matched.

Simplicity – this is one of the main principles that the two tablets abide by – and we see it exactly with their respective camera apps. So much so that the major focus of their interfaces is the viewfinder, with a relatively small emphasis being put on manual controls or different shooting modes. Armed with 8-megapixel rear cameras, it would seem that there’s not going to be a huge disparity between their qualities. 

Well, that’s certainly true with the exception of exposure – where the iPad Air 2 seems to do a slightly better job at it, as the Nexus 9’s shots sometimes appear over-exposed. Details are pretty much identical in all sorts of lighting conditions, which means that there’s not a significant winner in this category. Meanwhile, the images of the iPad Air 2 tend to look a tad livelier compared to those produced by its opponent.


Taking a pic Lower is better Taking an HDR pic (sec) Lower is better CamSpeed score Higher is better CamSpeed score with flash Higher is better
Google Nexus 9 6.3
No data
486
333
Apple iPad Air 2 2.5
3
No data
No data
Even though it’s mostly draw when it comes to still images, it’s the iPad Air 2 that records the better looking 1080p video – thanks in part to its sharper looks, proper exposure, and more natural looking colors. In contrast, the Nexus 9 continues to be plagued by an overly warm color reproduction, and it has a tougher time maintaining focus.

Multimedia

Those front-firing speakers of the Nexus 9 make plenty of sense, which complements the multimedia experience.

Headphones output power (Volts) Higher is better
Google Nexus 9 0.808
Apple iPad Air 2 0.97
Loudspeaker loudness (dB) Higher is better
Google Nexus 9 70.1
Apple iPad Air 2 77.9

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77 Comments

1. KingDingaLing

Posts: 324; Member since: Oct 11, 2013

Yay! This should turn into another game of words with friends! Can't wait. I'd like one of each.

42. Furbal unregistered

I got the ipad air 2 a few days ago. First ios device since a 3gs. I'm enjoying it so far. I'll keep Android as my phone though.

44. vincelongman

Posts: 5695; Member since: Feb 10, 2013

That's how it should be Its stupid to stick with Android/iOS/WP or Windows/Mac/Linux Just buy whatever you reckon is best for you

50. Furbal unregistered

I've been disappointed with all the android tablets I've had (asus tf101, nexus 7 1&2nd gen, note 10.1 2014, lg g pad 8.3, etc etc). Hopefully the ipad doesn't disappoint.

53. vincelongman

Posts: 5695; Member since: Feb 10, 2013

I hope you like it I haven't bought any tablet/iPad yet The iPad Air 2, Nexus 9 and Shield Tablet look great but I still prefer my ultrabook I'm liking the hybrids more than the tablets, except hybrids cost much more Maybe if the Android/iOS ecosystems get better with more "desktop class" apps/games I might get one But still don't think Android/iOS can match Windows/Mac though I probably wont be upgrading until Intel Cannonlake, the Surface Pro 5 or iPad Pro 2 or some other better hybrid are released

54. Furbal unregistered

Yeah no way any of these tablets will replace a laptop for anything productive. I have my acer v5 and Asus 750jz for portable productivity/fun time. Mostly a delve back into ios with how long I've been gone. Figured I should get the best device available for it

60. Dr.Hye

Posts: 95; Member since: Apr 16, 2014

Get the surface pro 3. That's a computer in a tabket form.

61. Furbal unregistered

Had one for about two weeks. Was not my style. If I'm on Windows I want a real keyboard and mouse. Good device though

2. LiquidGalaxy

Posts: 332; Member since: Jul 03, 2013

Strange he didn't mention the light bleed issue with the Nexus 9 - If this tab was $100 cheaper i would have picked one up to compliment my Air 2 as i did the Nexus 7. However, at $400, no...just no..

11. Commentator

Posts: 3723; Member since: Aug 16, 2011

...Because there isn't a light bleed "issue?" The only time it's even slightly noticeable is when the table this set to full-brightness on a totally black screen in a completely dark room. How often do you set your screen to full-brightness in a dark room?

12. SuperAndroidEvo

Posts: 4888; Member since: Apr 15, 2011

Another thing Joooooohnnnn V. from PhoneArena.com missed was that the Nexus 9 has a flash while the iPad Air 2 doesn't, so technically the Nexus 9 has the better camera because it doesn't lack the flash. I mean the flash is extremely important to a camera set-up. +1

15. SuperAndroidEvo

Posts: 4888; Member since: Apr 15, 2011

Also all the top apps that are out on iOS are available on Android. So how is it possible that Apple still has a "richer" app ecosystem when Android has all the same apps & is just as productive as Apple's iOS? It seems like in PhoneArena.com that Android will never be equal to iOS in the app department even though all the top iOS apps are also available on Android. I feel like that is something that must be said to make Apple happy...

37. medicci37

Posts: 1361; Member since: Nov 19, 2011

Was looking at the article not long ago on here about the best new games on mobile & several weren't available on Android. Nothing wrong with preferring android but your blatant bias & whining are ridiculous

45. donphone

Posts: 64; Member since: Oct 20, 2013

51. SuperAndroidEvo

Posts: 4888; Member since: Apr 15, 2011

Thank you. Some of these Apple fans refuse to believe there are other apps store just as robust or frankly more robust. +1

58. E.N.

Posts: 2610; Member since: Jan 25, 2009

You clearly live in your own little world. Even Android users agree that the Play Store is lacking. There was even a thread on ANROID Authority about this same very discussion: -http://www.androidauthority.com/open-thread-apps-better-ios-android-374946/ The App Store has much more productive apps than Android, no contest. Even when apps are available on both iOS and Android, the iOS version often works better, has more features, and is updated more often. For example, 2Do is a very popular iPhone/iPad app that at one point had an Android app that was just as good, but they've pretty much completely stopped development for Android entirely since November, 2013. - iOS:http://www.2doapp.com/ios/ - Android:https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.guidedways.android2do While many popular games are launched on both iOS and Android (on the same day or months later), many DO NOT make it to Android, you just end up never hearing about them. And when developers start using Metal to improve graphics, you're going to see a lot more iOS exclusives since Metal graphics/APIs (as opposed to the open-sourced OpenGL Apple use to rely completely on) cannot be ported to Android.

70. SuperAndroidEvo

Posts: 4888; Member since: Apr 15, 2011

Android will be fine, they have lots of apps also not available on iOS. I am fine without those apps & games iOS has... It's really not a big deal. To say iOS has a "richer" app ecosystem is an exaggeration. This is not 2009 or 2010, when such a statement was true. Android is making it's move. One day you won't be able to say what you say. The tide is already turning Android's favor. Android 5.0 Lollipop is going to change Android forever.

64. medicci37

Posts: 1361; Member since: Nov 19, 2011

How about you learn to read donphone. I'm not talking about who has the most apps. But there are some really good games that either aren't available or not optimized for Android

49. SuperAndroidEvo

Posts: 4888; Member since: Apr 15, 2011

Buddy, games are games. I am talking about ACTUAL Productivity apps. As for games sure they may come out first for Apple but eventually the DO come out for Android. Nice try though...

66. medicci37

Posts: 1361; Member since: Nov 19, 2011

You are so pathetic! I'm not on a mission to badmouth Android so I'm not trying anything! Not to mention I don't support Apple but I'm not weak minded enough to feel like I can't criticize Android. Was just responding to your lies about Android having all the same apps as Apple... (They do not!) & whining about phone arena being biased towards Apple. You are no different than a Apple fan boy

67. SuperAndroidEvo

Posts: 4888; Member since: Apr 15, 2011

You call me pathetic, yet you are the one resorting to name calling. lol Those computer tough guys... Yeah so masculine. lololololololololol All the top iOS apps that deal with productivity are available on Android. If it's not exactly the same app then they have a comparable alternative. So yes nice try... You say I lie, prove it. Also try it without the name calling cause it makes you look kinda bad... Kids these days...

57. E.N.

Posts: 2610; Member since: Jan 25, 2009

SuperAndroidEvo, why are you always complaining and bitter? iOS clearly has a superior app ecosystem, you're deluded if you think otherwise. And who the hell wants to be limited to only the top apps anyway?

68. SuperAndroidEvo

Posts: 4888; Member since: Apr 15, 2011

How do you know Apple has the "richer" app ecosystem? Doesn't Android have more apps? Also what there are no high quality apps on Android? Also who wants to be limited to the top apps anyway...? Well that's why I choose the Google Play Store cause they have the most & I am not limited to the top apps...

62. b1acktiger

Posts: 223; Member since: May 19, 2012

If you dont love Apple, they show their evil face. such activities like banning from media access. http://www.phonecruncher.com/news/2576225/apple_bans_german_website_for_posting_iphone_6_plus_bendgate_video.html

69. SuperAndroidEvo

Posts: 4888; Member since: Apr 15, 2011

That's right... But the iFans will always defend their beloved Apple, even when the evil face is out. +1

22. strudelz100

Posts: 646; Member since: Aug 20, 2014

2 Things I never do: Take pictures on Tablet. Use a flash on ANY picture.

33. SuperAndroidEvo

Posts: 4888; Member since: Apr 15, 2011

Was having a whole conversation with my buddy today about that very thing. People must be taking pictures on tablets, because OEMs are starting to put some decent to good cameras on tablets. It's not something I do on the regular but if I am ever using a tablet & a situation arises, then heck yeah I will snap a pic on the tablet, then resume what I was doing.

17. LiquidGalaxy

Posts: 332; Member since: Jul 03, 2013

It's an issue because it's there, and it's worse on some Nexus 9's than others. I don't want any light bleeding on a $400 tablet. And yes, the App Store is richer, it has more apps, has more apps built specifically for tablets, and new releases of the bigger titles from the big name devs usually (not always) release on iOS first.

3. Hyperreal

Posts: 361; Member since: Oct 08, 2013

John v. Go home you pathetic apple fanboy. I am sick of your apple oriented reviews. You are the worst tech reviewer ever.

16. slh163

Posts: 140; Member since: May 19, 2014

i think you really exaggerate because for me this review is quite fair

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