Some fifth-generation iPad Air buyers are complaining of a downgrade in build quality, resulting in “creaking,” among other issues.
Users complain that the iPad Air sports a thinner aluminum enclosure, which has resulted in creaking, a hollow sensation in the hand, and that light pressure on the back of the device warps the display. A thread on Reddit (via iMore) contains a large number of complaints from iPad Air users who say they have build quality concerns about the device. The initial Reddit post describes the issue as follows:
I ordered and received two blue iPad Air 2022 today and I’m a bit shocked. The aluminum backplate is a lot thinner than on the iPad 4 which I also have. You can almost feel the battery through the plate when you hold the device. Both iPads have the same feeling and are making creaking noises when you hold them. This did not happen on the iPad Air 4…
The initial post saw a large number of responses agreeing with the initial poster, suggesting the issue is widespread. Some users have posted videos of creaking noises coming from gentle taps on the device’s display to highlight some of the problems.
Some users say the iPad Air “feels very low quality” compared to its predecessor. Users also report a detectable difference on the rear of the device. It “feels like I can feel the inside from the back,” one reply claimed.
The new fifth-generation iPad Air starts from $599 and boasts up to 256GB of storage and features Apple’s homegrown M1 chip that had previously only been available in Apple’s iPad Pro.