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Nexus 9 vs. iPad Air Spec Shootout!

by Todd Haselton | October 15, 2014October 15, 2014 1:45 pm PDT

Google just unveiled the Nexus 9 today, its latest Android tablet, and it’s definitely going to compete head-to-head with the iPad Air on some levels.

We were curious how it stacks up against the iPad Air on a spec-to-spec basis, so we crafted the below comparison tables to show how the two tablets compare side-by-side. Obviously the iPad Air has a larger screen than the Nexus 9 and runs iOS 8 instead of Android, but what about the rest of the specs, including the camera, RAM, processor and more?

That’s what we’re here for. Check out how the Nexus 9 compares to the iPad Air. Think you’ll be picking one up?

iPad Air Gallery

Nexus 9 Gallery

Apple - iPad Air HTC - Nexus 9
Display Size 9.7-inch, 1536 x 2048 pixel display (264 ppi) 8.9-inch, 1536 x 2048 pixel display (288 ppi)
Resolution X 1536 1536
Resolution Y 2048 2048
Display Type Retina display IPS LCD
Operating System iOS 7 (at launch) Android 5.0 (at launch)
Processor A7 chip with 64-bit architecture and M7 motion coprocessor 2.3 GHz NVIDIA Tegra K1
  • 16GB
  • 32GB
  • 64GB
  • 128GB
  • 16GB
  • 32GB
External Storage No No
Main Camera (Back) 5MP 8MP
Secondary Camera (Front) FaceTime HD 1.6MP
  • CDMA EV-DO Rev. A and Rev. B: 800, 1900
  • UMTS/HSPA/HSPA+/DC-HSDPA: 850, 900, 1900, 2100 MHz); GSM/EDGE (850, 900, 1800, 1900
  • LTE Bands 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 7, 8, 13, 17, 18, 19, 20, 25, 26
Bluetooth Bluetooth 4.0 Bluetooth 4.0
Battery Up to 10 hours of surfing the web on Wi‑Fi, watching video, or listening to music: Up to 9 hours of surfing the web using cellular data network 6700mAh
NFC No Yes
  • 3.5mm Headphone jack
  • Lightning
  • 3.5mm Headphone jack
  • Mini USB
  • Accelerometer
  • Ambient light
  • Three-axis gyro
  • Accelerometer
  • Gyroscope
  • Magnetometer
  • Assisted GPS (Cellular models only)
  • Digital compass
  • GPS
Height 240 mm (9.45 inches) 8.9 inches (22.61 cm)
Width 169.5 mm (6.67 inches) 6.05 inches (15.37 cm)
Depth 7.5 mm (0.30 inches) 0.31 inches (7.9 mm)
Weight 16 oz (454 g) 425 g (14.99 oz)
Colors Silver, Space Gray Black, Gold, White
Supported Audio Formats AAC (8 to 320 Kbps), Protected AAC (from iTunes Store), HE-AAC, MP3 (8 to 320 Kbps), MP3 VBR, Audible (formats 2, 3, 4, Audible Enhanced Audio, AAX, and AAX+), Apple Lossless, AIFF, and WAV MPEG-4 AAC (AAC LC), MPEG-4 HE AAC (AAC+), MPEG-4 HE AACv2 (enhanced AAC+), AAC ELD (enhanced low delay AAC), AMR-NB, AMR-WB, FLAC, MP3, MIDI Types 0 and 1, Vorbis, PCM/WAV, Opus
Supported Video Formats H.264 video up to 1080p, 60 frames per second, High Profile level 4.2 with AAC-LC audio up to 160 Kbps, 48kHz, stereo audio in .m4v, .mp4, and .mov file formats; MPEG-4 video up to 2.5 Mbps, 640 by 480 pixels, 30 frames per second, Simple Profile with AAC-LC audio up to 160 Kbps per channel, 48kHz, stereo audio in .m4v, .mp4, and .mov file formats; Motion JPEG (M-JPEG) up to 35 Mbps, 1280 by 720 pixels, 30 frames per second, audio in ulaw, PCM stereo audio in .avi file format H.263, H.264 AVC, H.265 HEVC, MPEG-4, VP8, VP9
In The Box
  • Wall Adapter
  • Apple Lightning Cable
  • Quick Start Guide

Todd Haselton

Todd Haselton has been writing professionally since 2006 during his undergraduate days at Lehigh University. He started out as an intern with...