With all of the early rumors and expectations, the wait for the iPad Mini has been agonizing. But the “pain” is finally over and most of us couldn’t be happier. Not necessarily because we all got what we expected, but because we actually have a legitimate set-in-stone model for what the iPad Mini is. But those of you who didn’t get a chance to see Apple’s Event are probably still chewing your fingernails and waiting in agony for any information. So let’s not keep you waiting in anticipation any longer.
The presentation started off by showing the iPad Mini’s impressive “case.” I think most of us expected to see a casing that was similar to the third generation iPad, but we were instead granted a glimpse at a sleek, innovative, and modern-looking aluminum casing that boasted some impressive features. The new iPad Mini will come in at 7.2 mm thin, which is a quarter thinner than Apple’s new fourth generation iPad (also unveiled this morning).
To put that in perspective, that’s around as thin as a standard number two pencil. It’s also only going to weigh 0.68 pounds. That’s an impressive 58 percent lighter than the iPad HD, and around the same weight as a traditional pad of paper. The casing will come in two colors, similar to the iPhone 5; a white with silver-backing version, and another that is black in color with a slate-toned backing. The end result of these features is an incredibly streamlined iPad Mini that is very easy and comfortable to hold with one hand.
The next topic was screen size. The total “screen” (not including casing) size for the iPad Mini is an impressive 7.9 inches. And that may not seem like much when you consider that most smaller tablets round out at 7 inches. But Apple was nice enough to give us a little insight on just how much of a difference 0.9 inches can make. They used an “unmarked” 7-inch Android tablet as a comparison tool, and upon first inspection you’ll immediately notice that the area from the “edges of the screen” to the “edges of the casing” are much thinner on the iPad Mini.
We managed to get some exact numbers from the tech company concerning the size comparisons. The iPad Mini’s 7.9 inch display has a total screen surface area of 29.6 square inches, which is 35 percent larger than most other small tablets. When it comes to surfing the web, the Apple creation boasts a 49 percent larger viewing space. Turn the device to landscape mode and the numbers are even more impressive at 67 percent.
Apple also brought to light the fact that the iPad (and iPad Mini included) has access to over 275,000 applications that are specifically created and tooled to work and fit perfectly with the iPad display. That gives the Mini an even greater advantage over its competition, with most applications looking and operating better on the slim device.
Lastly, we got a glimpse inside the sleek product for a look at its internals. The iPad Mini will feature a dual core A5 chip, which was said to be “more than enough to power its smaller display.” It will receive a front-facing HD camera for use with Facetime HD, and will also get an included 5 Megapixel back-facing camera with 1080p HD video capabilities. The device also got substantial upgrades to its wireless and Wifi performance, with LTE support and faster Wifi rates. Of course, as we expected, we will see the introduction of the Lightning Adapter. Developers worked hard to make the device as energy friendly as possible, and it shows with an impressive 10 hours of battery life.
But let’s be honest, most of you are probably interested in one thing, the price point. And unfortunately for some, the price appeared at exactly what we expected it to. The base model of the iPad Mini, which includes Wifi only and 16 Gigabytes of space will start at USD $329.99 and climb progressively in price from there (according to added features and storage space). Wifi + Cellular models will start at USD $459.99. You’ll also get your choice of six colors for a smart cover made exclusively for the iPad Mini’s reduced size.
Apple will begin taking pre-orders for the Wifi version of the device this Friday, with the actual product shipping on November 2nd. If you want to get your hands on the cellular version of the Mini though, you’ll have to wait till approximately two weeks after its Wifi-only relative ships.
Photo Credits: Apple