iPad Air 2 iOS 8.1.3 Review: Two Weeks Later

The iPad Air 2 is still shiny and new, but many users still want to know how the iOS 8.1.3 update performs on the new iPad.

In the last several months Apple delivered several iOS 8 updates at breakneck speed to fix small bugs and add some features like Apple Pay to devices with Touch ID.

We are already looking out to the iOS 8.2 release that could come in March with support for the Apple Watch on newer iPhones. Apple just started an iOS 8.3 beta that includes good news for Google users and new Apple CarPlay features. We are also hearing about an iOS 8.4 update that could deliver a new streaming music service.

The iOS 8.1.3 update runs great on the iPad Air 2.
The iOS 8.1.3 update runs great on the iPad Air 2.

The iPad Air 2 arrived with iOS 8 on board and in the following weeks Apple delivered a collection of small updates to fix lingering iOS 8 bugs and problems.

With this release Apple cut off access to a jailbreak, but we could see it return with the iOS 8.2 release in the near future. Shortly after the iOS 8.1.3 update arrived users could still downgrade to iOS 8.1.2, but Apple closed this option down this week.

Here is a two-week iPad Air 2 iOS 8.1.3 review to help you decide if it is time to install this update on your iPad Air 2.

iPad Air 2 iOS 8.1.3 Review: Two Weeks Later

On new devices like the iPad Air 2 there is not the same concern about performance as with an iPad 2, but there are still important areas to test. After installing the iOS 8.1.3 update I tested five key areas of the iPad Air 2 to make sure my activities and tasks are not interrupted by any issues.

Apps

After testing common iPad apps, our most used apps work great on iOS 8.1.3 on the iPad Air 2.
After testing common iPad apps, our most used apps work great on iOS 8.1.3 on the iPad Air 2.

It is unlikely that we use the same iPad Air 2 apps, but there are many popular apps that I tested to make sure they run fine on the iPad Air 2 with iOS 8.1.3.

I tested multiple video streaming apps including Hulu Plus, Netflix, HBO Go, Amazon Prime Video and YouTube. All of these work perfectly on the iPad Air 2 with the latest update.

Gmail and Google Hangouts work fine after installing the update. Social networking apps like Facebook and Facebook Messenger both work great on the iPad Air 2. Other apps like Game of War, Boom Beach and others also run without any issues. If you have any problems you should make sure you are running the latest versions of the app and reach out to developers for support.

Battery Life

The iPad Air 2 battery life is stellar both before and after the update. Apple delivers long battery life and good standby time on the iPad line. After using the iOS 8.1.3 update for two weeks there are no problems with the iOS 8.1.3 battery life on the new iPad. Use this guide to fix bad iOS 8.1.3 battery life.

Connectivity

Connectivity is great on the iPad Air 2 with the iOS 8.1.3 update.
Connectivity is great on the iPad Air 2 with the iOS 8.1.3 update.

This iPad Air 2 is a WiFi only device so it is not possible to test the LTE connectivity that is an option for some models. Overall the iPad Ai 2 connectivity is solid on the iOS 8.1.3 update.

I can connect to home and coffee shop WiFi networks and to the personal hotspot from the iPhone 6 Plus. I am also testing the iPad Air 2 Slimbook Keyboard from Zagg, which connects by Bluetooth to deliver enhanced productivity.

Bugs & Issues

The iOS 8.1.3 update is not bug free, but I am not experiencing any major iOS 8.1.3 problems or bugs after two weeks of use. It can take time for any problems to surface, but after two weeks we don’t expect to see any major surprises.

I am able to use the iPad Air 2 without any problems or issues, which is exactly what we want after installing an update. If you run into iOS 8.1.3 bugs or problems you can try our simple fixes to solve the problems without going to an Apple Store.

Speed

The iPad Air 2 is blazing fast, and even after installing the iOS 8.1.3 update the tablet runs fast. It is unlikely that a small update will dramatically change the performance of such a new device, but it is still an area that I test. From switching apps to playing games and watching videos the iPad Air 2 is as fast as the day I bought it.

Is the iPad Air 2 iOS 8.1.3 Update Worth Installing Now?

iPad Air 2 Features
Most users can install the iOS 8.1.3 update on the iPad Air 2 without any worries.

There is little reason to avoid the iOS 8.1.3 update on the iPad Air 2. This device is new and doesn’t show any problems after two weeks of testing across various important areas.

If you are using the iOS 8.1.2 jailbreak to run Cydia apps you should not upgrade. There is no iOS 8.1.3 jailbreak and there is no way to downgrade anymore. You should stay on the iOS 8.1.2 update until Apple releases iOS 8.2, which we may see a jailbreak for.

For users with iOS 8.1.2 problems this is an update you should install now. If you have no problems you can wait for iOS 8.2, but there is no major reason for most users to wait any longer.

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