Apple’s (NASDAQ:AAPL) new iPad Air releases on Friday and early benchmarks of the fifth-generation iPad, which surfaced on Wednesday, reveal that the A7 processor and the graphics processing unit, or GPU, have offered the device huge performance gains over its predecessor, the iPad 4.
John Poole of Primate Labs, a performance analytics firm, compiled results from the Geekbench 3 benchmarks for the iPad Air and compared them to all iOS 7-compatible tablets, such as the iPad 2, iPad 3, iPad 4 and iPad mini. The benchmarks revealed that the iPad Air’s 64-bit A7 chip was clocking 1.4 GHz, scoring 1465 on the single-core test and 2643 on the multi-core test.
True to Apple's claims, the iPad Air benchmarks were about twice as fast as the iPad 4, while the A7 chip was found to be running 100MHz faster than the 1.3 GHz A7 chip found on the iPhone 5s. According to Poole, the enhancements could be attributed to two key factors, such as a larger battery that pumps more power and a larger chassis that provides better cooling. He also expects the upcoming Retina iPad mini to feature the same A7 processor running at 1.4GHz.
As seen above, the iPad Air outperforms the iPad 4 by more than 80 percent in the multi-core benchmark. In addition, the new iPad is more than five times faster than the iPad 2, while costing only $100 more.
On Tuesday, AnandTech published a report on the iPad Air, after taking the new tablet through a number of specialized benchmark tests. The report said that the iPad Air is 40 percent to 70 percent faster in GPU tests than the fourth-generation iPad.
“Since we’re talking about an A7 here and not an X-series SoC, there’s still only a 64-bit wide memory interface. As memory bandwidth is a key enabler of GPU performance I was curious to see how GPU performance compared to the outgoing iPad 4 with its much wider memory interface,” Anand Lal Shimpi of AnandTech wrote.
According to the report, the iPad Air’s GPU outperformed its predecessor in the 3DMark Ice Storm benchmark (by 36 percent), T-Rex HD game simulation benchmarks (by 75 percent) and 3D Mark (by 60 percent).
Meanwhile, other reports have suggested that both Apple retail stores and authorized resellers have been receiving large quantities of the iPad Air ahead of the device’s launch on Friday.
9to5Mac reported on Wednesday that major Apple retail stores across the U.S. have already received more than 500 units of the new iPad, suggesting that the company is ready to handle demand for the device with plentiful supplies on its release date.
The iPad Air will be available in silver or space gray with the base model -- 16GB with Wi-Fi -- priced at $499 in the U.S. Online orders are scheduled to begin at 12:01 a.m. PDT in the U.S. and Apple retail stores will open at 8 a.m. local time around the world.