Welcome to the next generation of the tablets with the iPad
Mini! Boasting similar and amazing features as the new iPad, the
biggest difference with the iPad Mini is the size. Unlike the
previous iPad, the mini measures at 200mm (height) x 134.7mm
(width) x 7.2mm (depth) and weighs in at a featherweight of just
380 grams. It's super tiny but considerably larger than the
iPhone 5 and comes in two colours that include
black/slate, white/silver with WiFi or WiFi+Cellular.
In terms of storage, the mini offers three models that include
16GB, 32GB and 64GB. Our review unit from Apple was for the 64GB
WiFi model. The new iPad Mini also comes with the latest
Bluetooth technology which is version 4.0, ensuring improved
connectivity and even Apple TV support.
Setting up the iPad Mini was a breeze and
when we powered on the tablet, it immediately found our wireless
connection which we setup and then we linked the unit to an
existing apple account. Best of all, we did not need a PC or a
Mac to setup the iPad mini and the installation process took
only a few minutes. Nothing is better than being up and running
in no time!
The CPU of the iPad Mini features a Dual-core A5 CPU that is
lightning quick and allowed us to play the latest iPad games and
apps with no issues whatsoever. The display of the iPad has a
resolution of 1024 x 768 at 163 pixels per inch on the 7.9 inch
LED-backlit multi-touch screen with icons, pictures and apps
almost jumping out of the display.
The only issue with the screen is that if you have used a retina
display before on another Apple product, text is not as sharp. Even though the screen is
smaller than the new iPad, I actually found it better to
use than its big brother. This was due to the smaller size of
the mini which made it easier to hold.
The button layout is similar to the new iPad with speakers
located at the bottom of the Mini with the lightning
connector in the middle. The Mini also has a 3.5mm stereo headphone jack, a
screen rotation lock, microphone and two cameras. The front
facing camera is the FaceTime HD Camera which allows the user to
take 1.2 megapixel (mp) photos or 720p HD video.
The camera on the back (iSight Camera) is a 5mp
camera which can take some impressive shots. Both cameras
support face detection and even photo/video geotagging. In
reference to video recording, the iSight Camera supports 1080p
HD recording, video stabilization and face detection.
battery life of the mini lasts around 10 hours for general use
such as surfing the web or listening to music. If you are
playing graphical intensive games, the battery will be used
faster. The battery of the mini is a lithium-polymer battery and
can be charged via the USB adapter to your PC/Mac or through the
mains. 10 hours is quite impressive considering what the iPad
Mini can do.
As mentioned earlier, the screen of the iPad Mini is quite
decent and pictures/videos really jump out of the screen
thanks the vibrancy of the screen. The only downside to the mini
is that it does not support the Retina Display of the new iPad
which looks absolutely stunning.
The Mini supports a variety of video
formats that include MPEG-4, AVI and MOV to name a few examples.
The audio quality of the Mini is decent and although you cannot
beat a standalone speaker system, the Mini still provides clear audio
and good music. The mini supports a variety of audio that
include AAC, MP3, Apple Lossless, AIFF and WAV. The inbuilt
microphone is perfect for making your own videos or using Apple
Straight out of the box, the iPad Mini comes with a variety of
apps that allows the user to get started. These include an
internet browser called Safari, Mail, Messages, FaceTime (video
conferencing), App Store (download applications for your iPad
Mini), iTunes (download music), Maps, Photo Booth (create some
bizarre photo effects), Calendar, Reminder, Clock, Camera and
When it comes to gaming, the iPad Mini delivers and we tested a
vast variety of titles that included Batman Arkham City, Need
for Speed, Lili, Modern Combat 4: Zero Hour. Interestingly
enough, gaming was actually
better to play on the iPad Mini due to the size of the tablet
which made it easier to hold.
Word Processing, Paint Programs and other apps all performed as
they did on the new iPad in terms of speed and performance.
The biggest draw back with the iPad Mini is probably the cost
which starts at $369AUD for the basic model that is quite
reasonable. However as you increase storage space or purchase a
model with WiFi+Cellular, the price jumps to $509AUD for the
16GB and $729 for 64GB.
A high end "new" iPad with Retina
Display (Wifi+Cellular and 64GB) is priced at $899 which is
larger than the mini and also comes with a far superior screen
thanks to the Retina Display. Nonetheless if you're looking for a
smaller iPad or tablet than the Mini is still our definitive
choice. The iOS for the iPad family is just far superior than
For more information, visit Apple