Since the release of the iPad Mini, choosing between the Apple tablets has become that much more difficult. The latest sales figures show that the iPad Mini is selling well – even better than some industry insiders expected. But does it have the same functionality as its big brother? If you’re about to buy a new iPad or upgrade to a newer one, which one should you choose?
iPad 4 Pros
For amazingly sharp images and text, the new iPad 4 is hard to beat. The 9.7-inch Retina Display is perfect for browsing the web, viewing photos and watching movies. The resolution is sharper than a 1080p HDTV, so if you want the best screen display, choose the iPad 4.
With more than twice the processor power and four times the graphics power of the iPad Mini, the iPad 4 is ideal for games and high-end productivity apps. Whether you are using Pages, Numbers, or Logic Studio, the extra screen space will help you get more work done. The iPad 4 also has more storage capacity
iPad 4 Cons
Weighing more than twice as much as the iPad Mini, the iPad 3 is not the easiest tablet to hold in one hand, especially for longer periods. It’s certainly easier than carrying a laptop around, but unlike the iPad Mini, you can’t just pop it in your coat pocket each time you go out.
If you are the first-time buyer of an iPad, the iPad Mini has the functionality of an iPad but not the high price tag. If you don’t need to store many high-quality games and full-length movies on your iPad, perhaps the iPad 4 is not worth the extra cost.
iPad Mini Pros
Being so light, the iPad Mini is great for browsing the web and also reading. It’s easy to hold in one hand and fits comfortably into a handbag or coat pocket, so it’s ideal if you’re always on the go.
With stereo speakers, the iPad Mini is also a useful portable music player and the sound is good enough for short bursts of music or for watching Youtube. Attach a decent pair of headphones and the audio quality is great.
Despite having a slower processor, the iPad Mini can still run every iPad app in the App Store. Some people may notice a difference in performance, but for most people this would not be an issue.
iPad Mini Cons
With a 7.9-inch screen, the iPad Mini is slightly wider than rival mini tablets, but if you frequently browse the web, you might sometimes wish you had the 9.7-inch screen instead. You’ll still see enough of the page on the iPad Mini, but sometimes you’ll have to pinch-to-zoom to read the text.If you know how good the iPad 4 Retina Display is, the iPad Mini’s display might be a disappointment. It’s fine for general Internet use but if you want the best quality photos and videos, the iPad 4 delivers.
Finally, if you intend to use the tablet for work-related tasks, it’s worth trying out the keyboard before you buy. Some people may find the iPad Mini’s on-screen keyboard too small for prolonged use. Spreadsheet and word processor apps are also slightly more difficult to use because of the reduced screen size.
The Bottom Line
There is no perfect choice when deciding between these two attractive tablets. Some people will prefer the larger screen, sharper images, and fast processor or the iPad 4. For users who store lots of games or frequently use productivity apps, the 9.7-inch screen makes sense.
For people looking for a smaller, lighter product that they could easily take on the go and don’t want to spend $500 for a tablet, the iPad Mini may be the way to go.