Thoughts on the iPad mini

by Christopher Paul on November 12, 2012

A a person who just picked up an iPad mini let me hold it for a minute and browse the web to test it out. In my quest to decide what iPad is best for me, I wanted to run it through a few tests.

I compared the screen the the 3rd Gen iPad I use and, like reviewers say, there is a noticeable difference in the screen. It’s not like the iPad 2 but the text is less crisp. This might be a bigger issue for me than it is for others. The Retina Display is so sharp that you can quickly feel the strain after looking at a pixelated tablet like the mini. The size of the screen was ok. Not too small but small enough to make some things a little harder to use. Watching movies might not be as enjoyable, though. Not sure if prolonged use would just get me used to the change or if this is another issue for me. It doesn’t seem to be a big deal to most from what I’ve read.

As for speed, no issues at all. Refreshing and scrolling up and down a website was snappy and felt pretty quick to me. I doubt I’ll do any more than play Letterpress on it so I’m sure it can handle the games I have.

Weight is the only thing I don’t like about my iPad. The mini is so light, I could probably read for hours and never feel strain holding it. Overall size is nice, too. It will fit in my back pocket and the pockets of the coats I wear. That’s a big plus.

I’m still not convinced the mini will have a place in my arsenal of gadgets. I think it will depend on what my next laptop purchase will be and whether Apple makes an iPad mini with a Retina Display. If I go 11″ MacBook Air, I’ll probably go iPad mini. If I got with a 13″ screen, I’ll stick with the larger iPad. My iPhone will do if size and weight are a limiting factor when I travel.

But I’m still impressed with what Apple has created. The weight, form factor, overall size is certainly compelling and it’s the tablet I’d recommend to anyone who will be doing a lot of reading. Once I hook up an Apple keyboard to a mini, I’ll know for sure if I can scale my writing activities to it. One thing is for sure, though, no matter that version I get, it will be the best tablet I could want.

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