Is Your iPad Obsolete and Outdated?

Here are the models that are discontinued

Did you know about half of the iPads out in the world are obsolete? And most people don't even know it because their devices still work quite well. That's the great "mistake" of Apple's iPad. It works so well, people don't realize when it might be time to upgrade.

If you are one of those people walking around with an obsolete or outdated iPad, you may soon find it unable to run the newest apps or it won't update existing apps. In a technical sense, an obsolete device is one that's no longer supported by the manufacturer, but the real-world definition of being obsolete is when a device is closer to a paperweight than a useful tablet.

Obsolete Models as of October 2019

The following iPad models became obsolete on or before September 26, 2019. In this case, "obsolete" mean the modell are both discontinued and unsupported by Apple, and they won't support the latest versions of iPadOS.

  • iPad, iPad 2, iPad (3rd generation), iPad (4th generation), iPad Air
  • iPad Mini through iPad Mini 3
Envious-looking person seeing others with newer iPad models
Theresa Chiechi / Lifewire

Discontinued but Supported

The following models are no longer sold, but they remain within Apple's service window for iPadOS updates:

  • iPad Air 2
  • iPad Mini 4
  • iPad Pro, 1st and 2nd generation
  • iPad, 5th and 6th generation

Currently Sold and Supported

If you're rocking one of these devices in the autumn of 2019, you're in excellent shape:

  • iPad Pro, 4th generation
  • iPad Air, 3rd generation
  • iPad Mini, 5th generation
  • iPad, 7th generation

Uses for Obsolete iPads

An iPad out of the service window isn't necessarily useless. Although it may be older or no longer capable of receiving iPadOS updates, an older tablet still makes a great tableside companion in your living room, an effective e-book reader, or a light-duty device for reading mail or checking your favorite websites.

It's OK to use the device until it dies; just know that the longer you go without updates from Apple, the more likely it is that security glitches could affect your tablet. So don't use an unpatched iPad for important or sensitive applications.