iPad Mini 3 Tablet Fights For Attention Under iPad Air 2's Shadow

 
 
By Don Reisinger  |  Posted 2014-10-17
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
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    1 - iPad Mini 3 Tablet Fights For Attention Under iPad Air 2's Shadow
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    iPad Mini 3 Tablet Fights For Attention Under iPad Air 2's Shadow

    by Don Reisinger
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    2 - No Changes on Screen Size
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    No Changes on Screen Size

    Although there was some speculation that Apple would try to distance the iPad Mini's size from that of the iPhone 6 Plus, the company has instead decided to keep the screen size the same. The iPad Mini 3 comes with a 7.9-inch screen like its predecessors. The display, of course, offers the Retina display technology that delivers high fidelity when watching videos or reading text.
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    3 - It Includes Touch ID, but Not Near-Field Communication
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    It Includes Touch ID, but Not Near-Field Communication

    Apple has officially brought its fingerprint sensor, Touch ID, to its entire mobile product line. The iPad Mini 3 comes with Touch ID to allow users to more securely access their apps, as well as make purchases securely from within apps. However, like the iPad Air 2, the iPad Mini 3 lacks a near-field communications (NFC) chip, which means users won't be able to make purchases in-store.
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    4 - Apple Is Sticking With the Familiar Color Choices
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    Apple Is Sticking With the Familiar Color Choices

    Apple has committed to offering the same colors across its mobile device line. The iPad Mini 3 comes in space grey with a black front panel, as well as silver and gold, which both feature a white front panel. The colors seem to be working well for Apple, as the company has committed to them in both the iPad Mini 3 and iPad Air 2.
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    5 - An Older Chip Powers the iPad Mini 3
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    An Older Chip Powers the iPad Mini 3

    Apple announced a new-generation chip in the iPad Air 2 called the A8X. The iPad Mini 3, however, is living in the last generation. The device comes with the A7 chip and the M7 motion coprocessor, which users would find in Apple's previous generation devices. It would have been nice if the company actually brought the A8 chip in the iPhone 6 to the iPad Mini 3.
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    6 - It Scores High on Mobility
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    It Scores High on Mobility

    When it comes to mobility, the iPad Mini 3 scores high marks. The tablet is 7.87 inches in height and 5.3 inches wide. Its depth is just 0.29 inches, making it extremely thin and easy to toss into a purse or bag. Best of all, it weighs just 0.73 to 0.75 pounds, depending on the version, so it's extremely lightweight.
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    7 - iPad Mini 3 Ships With Lower-End 802.11n WiFi
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    iPad Mini 3 Ships With Lower-End 802.11n WiFi

    While the iPad Air 2 is equipped with 802.11ac WiFi connectivity, Apple hasn't gone so far in the iPad Mini 3. Apple's smaller slate tops out at 802.11n, which will disappoint those who have already invested in the newer wireless technology. Apple did, however, bundle Bluetooth 4.0 in the device, which is nice to see.
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    8 - iPad Mini 3 Ships With iOS 8, of Course
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    iPad Mini 3 Ships With iOS 8, of Course

    Apple's iPad Mini 3 will ship with iOS 8. While that might be good news for some users, it's worth noting that after a month of availability, iOS 8 has less than 50 percent adoption, meaning those who are currently running legacy devices are not jumping at the chance to download the latest software. With the iPad Mini 3, customers will have no choice, so any holdouts might want to keep that in mind.
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    9 - Apple Sticks With Same Solid Design
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    Apple Sticks With Same Solid Design

    One of the best things about the iPad Mini 3 is its design. And Apple wisely changed nothing in its basic design. The iPad Mini 3 comes with a slim and small footprint, its bezel on either side of the screen is nice and thin, and both the white and black front panels look great. The iPad Mini 3 is simply a nice-looking product that shouldn't be overlooked.
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    10 - Apple Has Dropped the 32GB Version
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    Apple Has Dropped the 32GB Version

    Apple has decided with this iPad generation to ditch the 32GB version. Instead, the company is offering a 16GB version, along with 64GB and 128GB models. It's not clear why Apple has cut the 32GB model from its tablet lineup, but those who want more storage will at least have a 128GB option available. Whether 16GB is enough space for the average user, however, is decidedly up for debate.
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    11 - Feature Options Make the iPad Mini 3 Pricey
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    Feature Options Make the iPad Mini 3 Pricey

    Apple is selling the 16GB version for a starting price of $399, while the 64GB and 128GB options go for $499 and $599, respectively. Consumers can add $130 to each device option if they want the LTE option. The highest-end iPad Mini goes for $729 and includes 4G LTE connectivity. In other words, the device is somewhat expensive.
 

The iPad Air 2 was clearly the star of Apple's Oct. 16 media briefing. Apple spent a lot of time talking about the new 9.7-inch slate and explaining how it will provide a better use experience than any previous iPad model. In contrast, Apple spent little time talking about updates to the iPad Mini 3. That device, which sports a 7.9-inch screen, was once a major new production release for Apple. Now, the iPad Mini appears to be an afterthought. Apple spent so little time talking about the iPad Mini 3 update that if you turned away from the live stream for a few minutes, you would have missed it entirely. It was surprising and might indicate Apple's tacit acknowledgment of the iPad Mini's tenuous position in its mobile product line. The 5.5-inch iPhone 6 Plus phablet is awfully close in size and perhaps even a close competitor to the iPad Mini 3. Apple could very well be concerned that one device will cannibalize the sales of the other. This slide show focuses on the iPad Mini 3's main features and perhaps will help potential buyers decide whether Apple's smaller tablet is the best fit for their needs.

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

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