The first iPad was announced several years ago and tablets have become much more popular since. There may not be as much choice as smartphones when it comes to tablets, but there are still a number of decisions to be made if you're in the market for one.

If you are reading this feature it is likely you have already decided on the platform, disregarding Android and Windows for iOS, and you are now trying to figure out what size iPad is the right one for you and which one fits into how much you want to spend.

Apple offers five iPad options - the iPad mini 2, iPad mini 4, iPad Air 2, iPad Pro 9.7 and the iPad Pro 12.9. The tablets range from 7.9-inch displays to 12.9-inch, but what are the other differences between them and which is the right one for you and your budget?

The iPad mini 2 is for those that want a small Apple tablet but don't have the cash to splash on the newest model. If you are happy to sacrifice the latest specs and features, the iPad mini 2 gives you iOS on a budget.

The iPad mini 4 is for those that want a small Apple tablet with many of the latest specs and features. You'll need a little more cash for the iPad mini 4 but you get a few extra features, like Touch ID, and a more powerful device.

The iPad Air 2 is for those that want a larger Apple tablet but don't have the budget for the latest model. You save yourself £170 opting for this model over the iPad Pro 9.7 so if you can live without Apple Pencil compatibility and a cracking camera, it's a good option.

The iPad Pro 9.7 is Apple's most powerful and feature-rich tablet yet. It is the iPad for those that want all the features of the larger iPad Pro but in a smaller and more compact format, along with some additional extras no other iPad offers.

The iPad Pro is the largest and most expensive iPad available, as well as one of the most powerful. It is for those that want to do more on their tablet than just watching movies and browsing the web, and for those that not only have the budget to warrant this model but also the desire for something bigger than the 9.7-inch model.

Apple1. iPad mini 2
  • Dimensions: 200 x 134.7 x 7.5mm, 331g
  • Display: 7.9-inches, 2048 x 1536 (326ppi) 
  • Storage: 32GB (Wi-Fi, Wi-Fi & Cellular)
  • Battery: Up to 10 hours
  • Colours: Silver, Space Grey
  • Price: From £239 to £359

The iPad mini 2 is the cheapest way to get your hands on an Apple tablet as it is now a few years old and has been succeeded by the iPad mini 4. It is the smallest iPad available, though not the slimmest or lightest.

The iPad mini 2 comes in silver and space grey colour options so you miss out on the gold option and there are also a couple of other things lacking, such as Touch ID and Apple Pay, as well as an anti-reflective coating on the display. There is also no slo-mo video capability or burst mode.

The A7 chip and M7 motion coprocessor sit under the hood and you'll find a 1.2-megapixel front camera, coupled with a 5-megapixel rear camera, the latter of which is a slight downgrade from the iPad mini 4.

Apple2. iPad mini 4
  • Dimensions: 203.2 x 134.8 x 6.1mm, 298.8g
  • Display: 7.9-inches, 2048 x 1536 (326ppi)
  • Storage: 32GB, 128GB (Wi-Fi and Wi-Fi & Cellular)
  • Battery: Up to 10 hours
  • Colours: Silver, Space Grey, Gold
  • Price: From £379 to £499

The iPad mini 4 is the newer and more expensive addition to the small iPad club. It is ever so slightly larger than the iPad mini 2, but it is slimmer and lighter and although it has the same size and resolution display, you get the addition of a fully laminated screen and an anti-reflective coating.

There is a newer, faster chip powering the iPad mini 4 with the A8 processor and M8 motion coprocessor on board, as well as the addition of an 128GB storage option and gold finish.

In terms of other extras, Touch ID is included on the iPad mini 4, as is Apple Pay compatibility, burst mode and slo-mo video. The only other difference to the older iPad mini 2 is the bump to an 8-megapixel rear camera.

Apple4. iPad Air 2
  • Dimensions: 240 x 169.5 x 6.1mm, 437g
  • Display: 9.7-inches, 2048 x 1536 (264ppi)
  • Storage: 32GB, 128GB (Wi-Fi and Wi-Fi & Cellular)
  • Battery: Up to 10 hours
  • Colours: Silver, Space Grey, Gold
  • Price: From £379 to £499

The iPad Air 2 is the cheapest way to pick up a slightly larger Apple tablet without shelling out over £500. It boasts the specs and features of the original and now redundant iPad Air, but it is slimmer and lighter.

A faster A8X and M8 motion coprocessor sit under the hood than both the smaller iPad mini 4 and the original iPad Air, but you get the same colour options and storage capacities as the iPad mini 4, as well as the same cameras and features.

Touch ID, Apple Pay, burst mode, slo-mo video and the fully laminated display with anti-reflective coating are all therefore present on the iPad Air 2, but you miss out on Apple Pencil compatibility, a True Tone display, higher resolution cameras and stereo speakers, all of which are found on the newer 9.7-inch iPad Pro model

AppleIpad Pro 9.7
  • Dimensions: 240 x 169.5 x 6.1mm, 437g
  • Display: 9.7-inches, 2048 x 1536 (264ppi), True Tone
  • Storage: 32GB, 128GB, 256GB (Wi-Fi and Wi-Fi & Cellular)
  • Battery: Up to 10 hours
  • Colours: Silver, Space Grey, Gold, Rose Gold
  • Price: From £549 to £849

The iPad Pro 9.7 is exactly the same size as the iPad Air 2 and it offers the same size display and resolution too, meaning the same pixel density. It does add a couple of new technologies to the mix however, including a True Tone and wide colour gamut display, as well as Apple Pencil compatibility.

The iPad Pro 9.7 takes its design cues from the larger iPad Pro, meaning you'll get the Smart Connector and four-speaker setup with this device. It also adds the option of a rose gold finish and a 256GB storage option.

As you might expect, the iPad Pro 9.7 has the latest A9X processor under its hood like the larger iPad Pro, but it also significantly improves the camera experience compared to the iPad Air 2 with a 12-megapixel rear camera and a 5-megapixel front camera, both of which offer flash.

Apple5. iPad Pro
  • Dimensions: 305.7 x 220.6 x 6.9mm, 713g
  • Display: 12.9-inches, 2732 x 2048 (264ppi)
  • Storage: 32GB, 128GB, 256GB (Wi-Fi) or 128GB, 256GB (Wi-Fi & Cellular)
  • Battery: Up to 10 hours
  • Colours: Silver, Space Grey, Gold
  • Price: From £729 to £1029

The iPad Pro marked a new tablet territory for Apple with its 12.9-inch display. It will be far too big for some but for others, it will be the tablet they were waiting for.

The display technology is the same as the iPad mini 4 and iPad Air 2 meaning it doesn't offer the True Tone and wide colour gamut screen of the iPad Pro 9.7. You'll also find the same cameras and other features such as Touch ID and Apple Pay compatibility as the iPad Air 2 and iPad mini 4 so it also misses out on the higher resolution cameras found in the iPad Pro 9.7.

The iPad Pro has a faster processor than all the other iPads available, except its newer, smaller brother, with the A9X and M9 combination under the hood. It is also compatible with the Apple Pencil and it will offer a range of software features, including Adobe, that the other iPads, again except the newer, smaller model, don't.