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iPad Air reviews are in and are overwhelmingly positive

With the iPad Air set to hit stores on Friday, initial reviews of Apple's latest flagship iPad began rolling in Tuesday evening and, suffice it to say, they're overwhelmingly positive.

Here's a sampling of iPad Air reviews from around the web.

First up we have David Pogue who, now a Yahoo employee, posted an iPad Air review on his Tumblr:

That big public yawn must drive Apple's engineers crazy. The thing is, making the iPad smaller, lighter, and faster without sacrificing battery life or beauty is a tremendous achievement.

This isn't a device that sits or hangs in one place its whole life. It's not a microwave or a TV. You have to hold this thing while you're using it, and carry it around when you're not. So size and weight matter a lot.

As one would expect for a product called the iPad Air, a number of reviews focused on how shockingly lightweight Apple's latest iPad is.

Damon Darlin of The New York Times writes:

What you may not know is this: Those 6.4 ounces make all the difference when, as you recline while reading or watching a movie, you conk out and the iPad falls forward to bonk you on the nose. The Air won't hurt you the way the old iPad did.

The weight reduction and a 20 percent slimmer profile provide other benefits, too. My messenger bag strap didn't dig into my shoulder as deeply when my iPad was in it. My hand didn't cramp up while grasping the iPad Air for an hour while watching movies or playing games.

Jim Dalrymple of The Loop:

It's very hard to describe how good the iPad Air feels in your hand without actually picking one up. It's kind of like the first time you saw a Retina display for the first time-shock.

If you're looking for a Siracusa-esque monster review of the iPad Air, then look no further than Anand Lal Shimpi of AnandTech. Shimpi covers anything you could possibly want to know about the Air, from both a usability and technical perspective.

Two weeks ago I had all but written off the bigger iPad. It was too bulky and just no where near as portable as the iPad mini. Once the latter gets a Retina Display and equal hardware across the board, why would anyone consider the bigger model? The iPad Air changed my perspective on all of that. It really does modernize the big iPad.

One particular tidbit worth noting from Shimpi's epic review is that charging time on the iPad Air checks in at 4.11 hours compared to 5.69 hours on the iPad 4.

Also delivering a substantive and extensive review is Engadget who also came away impressed with Apple's latest offering:

Surprise: the iPad Air is the best iPad we've reviewed. In addition, though, it's also the most comfortable 10-inch tablet we've ever tested. Not every manufacturer can produce a thin and light device without also making it feel cheap or flimsy, but Apple nailed it. Factor in a sizable boost in performance and battery life, and the Air is even more compelling. The last two iPads served up relatively few improvements, but the Air provides people with more of a reason to upgrade or even buy a tablet for the first time.

Walt Mossberg is also on board the iPad Air bandwagon, calling it the tablet he'd recommend. He also indicated that he was able to get a whopping 12 hours and 13 minutes of battery life out of the device, exceeding Apple's own battery life estimates by 20%.

Believe it or not, but the number of outlets Apple provided review units to is much much longer. I can't remember Apple ever handing out so many review units for previous product releases. That said, some other sites with iPad Air reviews you might want to check out include TechCrunch, Mashable, CNET, TIME, and USA Today.

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