After working with the iPad Air and Magic Keyboard, I decided to upgrade to the latest M1 (5th Gen) based model. Function wise, there is no difference between the A14 (4th gen, previous) and M1 (5th Gen, current) models. The camera is a bit better in the M1 (5th Gen), but honestly who takes photos with an iPad? Front facing camera is a must for video converence, but I can honesly say I’ve never used the rear camera. I have an iPhone12 with much better options for that. I did use an Apple Pencil 2 as well. I ended up passing on my 4th Gen (A14) model to my daughter who uses it for digital art. She loves it. Plenty of comparisions can be found on the performance of each.
Back to the M1 (5th Gen) model. It’s tough to imagine that this iPad has the same capability as the MacBook Air/Pro, Mac Mini, and iMac….hardware wise. The only seperating factor is the OS. MacOS still beats iPadOS for multitasking and you just can’t beat the larger monitor format for handling big jobs.
I will continue to recommend the iPad Air with Magic Keyboard over a MacBook. It’s about 2/3 the cost as well. 90% of the reasons most own a laptop for, can be handled by the ultra portable iPad. Just don’t forget the Magic Keyboard.