The best iPad for gaming: 2023 List

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The best iPad for gaming: 2023 List - W3Tekno

The best iPads for gaming will debunk your assumption that gaming isn't the first thing that comes to mind when you think of Apple's tablets. These multi-purpose gadgets are great tools for creatives, but they're also great entertainment centers when it's time to relax and play PUBG.

iPad owners have access to a huge catalog of games because iPads can run mostly all the games that iPhones can run. Plus, with an Apple Arcade membership, you'll have access to even more polished titles, many of which are on par with console games. To make sure we've considered the needs of every gamer, we've included a range of iPads at various price points in the list below.

Apple iPad Air (2022, 5th generation) - Slim, lightweight and perfect for gaming

Apple iPad Air (2022, 5th generation)

Slim, lightweight and perfect for gaming
Specifications
  • Display size: 10.9in
  • Processor: M1
  • Storage options : 64GB, 256GB
  • Apple Pencil compatibility: 2nd generation
  • Reasons To Buy
  • Stunning display
  • Now with the same processor as the iPad Pro
  • Reasons To Avoid
  • Quite close in price to the iPad Pro
  • The fifth-generation iPad Air, released in April 2022, is the latest iPad model. Apple has significantly improved the professionalism of its mid-range tablet by equipping it with the same M1 processor as the 2021 iPad Pros. This makes it a great alternative to the more expensive iPad Pro because it means it performs incredibly well in even the most sophisticated iPad games.

    Combined with a gorgeous 10.9-inch 1640 x 2360 Liquid Retina IPS LCD display, games look and perform great. iPad Air strikes the perfect balance between superior performance and portability thanks to its smaller screen and thinner build (it is an "Air" device after all). Plus, this iPad comes in more colors than any other, giving it a bit more flair.

    It does many things right, but it's not perfect. Also, the price of the new iPad Air has risen, bringing it uncomfortably close to the price of the iPad Pro. If you're a gamer who needs the biggest screen for gaming, you might be better off saving a bit more for the iPad Pro.

    This also means that those on a budget may want to look for another device, such as the new iPad, which is first on this list. If you plan to install a few games, the 64 GB of storage provided by the base device is too small, so you should probably go for the 256 GB version. For more information, see our comprehensive iPad Air (5th Generation, 2022) review.

    Apple iPad mini (2021, 6th generation) - The best iPad for mobile gaming

    Apple iPad mini (2021, 6th generation)

    The best iPad for mobile gaming
    Specifications
  • Display size: 8.3in
  • Processor: A15 Bionic
  • Storage options : 64GB, 256GB
  • Apple Pencil compatibility: 2nd generation
  • Reasons To Buy
  • Super portable
  • Good price for tech
  • Reasons To Avoid
  • No 3.5mm jack
  • Still no Smart Keyboard support
  • The iPad mini didn't receive an update last year, unlike most other iPad models, so the 2021 model is still the newest model available. The good news is that it's still a great tablet and can play current iPad games very easily.

    The iPad mini's 8.3-inch screen is an increase from the 7.9-inch screen of previous models, a feature we love for gaming because it's so portable. If you are looking for a game console that is almost as portable as the legendary GameBoy, this iPad is for you.

    Games still look great despite the smaller screen, thanks to the Liquid Retina display's exceptionally clean and colorful 2266x1488 resolution at 326 pixels per inch.

    The A15 Bionic chip, USB-C support and 5G connectivity also provide plenty of power, so if you have the right mobile contract, you can download games and play online multiplayer while you're out and about. It also works with the Apple Pencil 2, allowing you to once again utilize this great stylus and its advanced capabilities. While this doesn't help with games, it allows you to use it for creative work.

    Apple iPad 10.2 (2021, 9th generation) - The best value iPad for gaming

    Apple iPad 10.2 (2021, 9th generation)

    The best value iPad for gaming
    Specifications
  • Display size: 10.2in
  • Processor: A13 Bionic
  • Storage options : 64GB, 256GB
  • Apple Pencil compatibility: 1st generation
  • Reasons To Buy
  • Excellent value for money
  • Compatible with Apple Pencil 1
  • Reasons To Avoid
  • Old design
  • Despite being two years old, the basic iPad model from 2021 is still a great iPad for gaming. It features 64GB and 256GB storage options, the greatest quantities an iPad could support at the time of its debut.

    While the iPad (2021) loses one of its distinctive selling qualities in 2023 as the majority of contemporary iPads provide similar storage quantities as well, choosing this older model won't result in you giving up storage capacity.

    There are a ton of other benefits to choosing this type. Its 10.2-inch LCD screen with a resolution of 1620 x 2160 is big, attractive, and capable of running any iPad game smoothly.

    The new low price is the most convincing argument for choosing this model. Even though Apple no longer sells this model, some stores still carry it, and since the newer model is already available, you can buy it for an incredibly low price. If you want to play games on your iPad but don't want to spend a lot of money, you should get this model.

    Apple iPad (10th Gen, 2022) - The best all-round iPad for gaming

    Apple iPad (10th Gen, 2022)

    The best all-round iPad for gaming
    Specifications
  • Display: 10.9in, Liquid Retina (2360x1640)
  • Processor: A14 Bionic
  • Storage options : 64GB, 256GB
  • Apple Pencil: 1st generation
  • Camera: Ultra Wide 12MP front, 12MP back
  • Reasons To Buy
  • Bigger, brighter screen
  • Enough power for demanding games
  • Reasons To Avoid
  • May be a bit large for some
  • We suggest the iPad (2022) as the best all-around iPad for gaming because it strikes an excellent mix between price, performance, and features.

    The most affordable iPad in Apple's current lineup, it performs exceptionally well overall thanks to a recent upgrade. Although the A14 chip isn't as powerful as the M1 and M2-equipped iPad Pros (also discussed in this book), it's still more than adequate for playing mobile games. Remember that these games are primarily intended to operate on iPhones, so adding a lot more power would be unnecessary.

    It also features a stunning 10.9-inch Liquid Retina (2360x1640) display that makes games appear beautiful and makes playing them much more pleasant. This is especially true for games with a lot of text. However, if you want something more portable, the iPad mini is a good option.

    Apple iPad Pro 12.9-inch (M2, 2022) - The ultimate iPad for gaming

    Apple iPad Pro 12.9-inch (M2, 2022)

    The ultimate iPad for gaming
    Specifications
  • Display size: 12.9-inch
  • Resolution: 2,732 x 2,048
  • Stylus support: Apple Pencil 2
  • Storage: Thunderbolt 4, Bluetooth, Wi-Fi
  • OS: 128GB/256GB/512GB/1TB/2TB
  • Reasons To Buy
  • New ultra-powerful display
  • Unbeatable processing power
  • Reasons To Avoid
  • Overkill for some
  • If money is no object and you want the best gaming experience possible on an iPad, the all-new 12.9-inch M2 iPad Pro is unquestionably the device to buy. Even the most graphically intensive games will run smoothly on this device thanks to the incredibly powerful M2 chip, which is also found in devices like the MacBook Pro 13-inch (M2, 2022). That's why we think this is the best iPad for gamers looking for more serious gaming time.

    While there is some truth to the claim that the M2 chip is excessive, it makes the iPad Pro a future-proof iPad for gaming. It will be years before any game struggles to run on iPad Pro. If you're a game designer, the power here allows you to code and test your games.

    It's possible that the iPad Pro's massive 12.9-inch mini-LED XDR display is even more important. It's the biggest screen you can get, and the mini-LED technology makes games look great. Keep in mind, though, that this makes the iPad Pro much larger and less portable than previous iPads and tablets.

    This is a very expensive iPad, so if you plan to use it for other things, this purchase makes more sense. Combined with the Apple Pencil 2, you have a great tablet for creative work too. There are also more affordable iPads in this guide if you only plan to play games.

    How to choose the best iPad for gaming

    What else you might want to use iPad for is the first and simplest thing to think about when you consider buying one for gaming. Without a doubt, if you're a creative person, you should choose iPad Pro and use its powerful M2 CPU for everything from digital art to video editing.

    Otherwise, you should consider your budget; iPads are quite expensive devices, so if you only want one for gaming, you might be better off going for the Mini or Air. Alternatively, you may want to future-proof your investment by choosing a more expensive model with M2 for many years of gaming enjoyment.

    How we test iPads for gaming

    In general, when testing an iPad, we look for specifications and features that will improve performance, handling and user experience. This means factors such as display, processor speed, battery life and compatibility are all relevant.

    In terms of gaming specifically, we're interested in how well the tablet handles power-hungry games, especially online games like PUBG, League of Legends or Genshin Impact. Before we recommend an Apple tablet for gaming, we want to see responsiveness, simple operation, and a bright and gorgeous screen; happily, most of the devices offer that and more.

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