eWritable > Blog > What is the difference between the Boox Note Air3 & Boox Note Air2 Plus?

What is the difference between the Boox Note Air3 & Boox Note Air2 Plus?

The newly-released Note Air3 is the natural successor to arguably Boox’s most successful e-ink tablet: the Boox Note Air2 Plus.

But what are the differences (and similarities) between them?

Read on to find out more…

First, the similarities…

Both the Note Air3 (NA3) and Note Air2+ (NA2) are 10.3″ monochrome e-ink tablets. They both have a black-and-white Carta e-ink screen with a resolution of 1404×1872 and a screen density of 227PPI. And they both have a scratchy film over the screen to simulate a paper-like writing feel.

Internally, they both have an octa-core CPU, 4Gb of RAM and 64Gb of storage. And they both have a 3700mAh battery. Neither tablets have an integrated graphics processor and Boox Super Refresh (BSR), which means that they are more limited than other newer Boox tablets (such as the Note Air3 C and Tab Ultra C Pro) with regards to the performance of certain apps. However, battery life should be longer between recharges.

In terms of hardware features, they both have a frontlight (with warmlight settings), speakers, a microphone, g-sensor (for auto-orientation), Bluetooth, and Wifi.

They are both 5.8mm thick and both run Android as their operating system, which means that apps from the Google Play Store can be downloaded and installed.

And they are both shipped pre-installed with Boox’s native software, which includes comprehensive reading and note-taking apps.

So, what are the differences?

Although both the NA3 and NA2 run Android, the version numbers are different. The NA2 runs Android 11, whilst the NA3 runs Android 12. Android 12 does come with some improvement to security, privacy, and performance, and of course, it is newer, so likely to be supported for longer. But, in fairness, this probably won’t make a great deal of difference to the majority of users (unless you are wanting to use an app that requires Android 12 or higher).

The processor on the NA3 is faster (2.4GHz compared to 1.8GHz on the NA2).

And the NA3C has a MicroSD card slot and a fingerprint scanner integrated into the power button, which are not present on the NA2.

Another point of note is that the NA3 is slightly heavier than the NA2 but not quite as wide or tall.

In terms of price, the NA3 is $399.99, which is the same as the NA2 before manufacturing ceased and it was pulled from the market. However, Boox did (fairly swiftly) discount the NA2 as it approached the end of its product life from around $450-$500 – even as recently as around a month ago, the NA2 was listed at $450. Of course, this was to ensure that their newer product did not end up costing less than its predecessor.

And, in terms of availability, the NA2 is no longer being manufactured, so stocks are currently low and are unlikely to be replenished (so if this is the tablet you want, don’t wait too long!). Although it is sold out on the official Boox Store, there are still some units available from Amazon.

Conversely, at the time of writing, the NA3 is only available from the official Boox Store. It has not yet been been listed on Amazon, or even Boox’s european store. (it is now available from Boox’s Euro Store, priced at €450)

Verdict

The NA3 appears to be an incremental upgrade to the NA2.

It has slightly better specs, a few additional hardware features, and a later version of Android.

But there’s really not a great deal of difference between the two.

However, because the NA3 is priced the same as the NA2 (and actually cheaper than the NA2 was priced until very recently), you are getting more for your money. So, based on the spec sheets, the NA3 appears to me to be the better deal (however, I’ll reserve full judgment until I have bought a unit for testing).

Boox Note Air3 vs Boox Note Air2 Plus

The table below shows the similarities and differences in specs between the NA3 and NA2. To compare more e-ink tablets, please check out my filterable comparison matrix, which has almost 40 devices listed.

PRODUCTBOOX NOTE AIR3BOOX NOTE AIR 2 +
Specs & ratings infoONYX BOOX NOTE AIR3ONYX BOOX NOTE AIR 2 PLUS
My Rating
Price (approx)$400
$450
Limited availability
ManufacturerOnyx BooxOnyx Boox
Release year20232021
SCREENBOOX NOTE AIR3BOOX NOTE AIR 2 +
Screen typeCarta 1200Carta HD
Screen size10.3"10.3"
Screen resolution (B/W)1404 x 18721404 x 1872
Screen density (B/W)227dpi227dpi
Colour⨯⨯
Screen resolution (Colour)n/an/a
Screen density (Colour)n/an/a
Frontlightβœ“βœ“
Wacom compatibleβœ“βœ“
Buy
HARDWAREBOOX NOTE AIR3BOOX NOTE AIR 2 +
CPU2.4 Ghz octa-core1.8 GHz octa-core
RAM4Gb4Gb
Storage64Gb64Gb
Battery3700mAh3700mAh
Super Refresh⨯⨯
Keyboard folio⨯⨯
Speakersβœ“βœ“
Microphoneβœ“βœ“
G-Sensorβœ“βœ“
Ceramic Tip⨯⨯
Bluetoothβœ“βœ“
Fingerprint scannerβœ“β¨―
SD card slotβœ“β¨―
Rear camera⨯⨯
Front camera⨯⨯
Waterproof⨯⨯
USB-Cβœ“βœ“
Width193mm195.4mm
Height226mm229.4mm
Thickness5.8mm5.8mm
Weight450g445g
Buy
SOFTWAREBOOX NOTE AIR3BOOX NOTE AIR 2 +
Operating systemAndroid 12Android 11
Google Play Storeβœ“βœ“
Kindle supportβœ“βœ“
Handwriting searchβœ“βœ“
Handwriting conversionβœ“βœ“
Insert shapesβœ“βœ“
Insert imagesβœ“βœ“
Split screenβœ“βœ“
Custom templatesβœ“βœ“
No. templates40+45+
Brush typesFountain Pen, Paintbrush, Ballpoint Pen, Pencil, MarkerFountain Pen, Paintbrush, Ballpoint Pen, Pencil, Marker
Screen shareβœ“βœ“
ADE support⨯⨯
File formatsPDF, EPUB, DOC, DOCX, PPT, PPTX, TXT, HTML, RTF, FB2, CBZ, CBR, AZW3, MOBI, PRC, DJVU, CHM, ZIPPDF, EPUB, DOC, DOCX, PPT, PPTX, TXT, HTML, RTF, FB2, CBZ, CBR, AZW3, MOBI, PRC, DJVU, CHM, ZIP
File formats (image)PNG, JPG, TIFF, BMPPNG, JPG, TIFF, BMP
File formats (Audio)WAV, MP3WAV, MP3
Buy
Where to buyBoox Euro Shop
Boox Shop
Canadian Reseller
Amazon
eBay
Boox Euro Shop
Boox Shop
Amazon BE
Amazon DE
Amazon FR
Amazon PL
Amazon UK
eBay AU
eBay CA
eBay DE
eBay ES
eBay FR
eBay IE
eBay IT
eBay UK
eBay US
PRODUCTBOOX NOTE AIR3BOOX NOTE AIR 2 +

About the author

Me and my e-ink tablets
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Dan Dutton is passionate about E-ink writing tablets, which bring together the pleasure of writing on paper with the power of digital technology. When he bought his first tablet, he realised that there wasn't a lot of unbiased information available for people that were considering buying an E-ink tablet, and so he built eWritable.

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