Hands-on with the iPad Mini!


We got a hold of the iPad Mini today, and here we give you a closer look at Apple’s newest device.

For those who aren’t in the loop yet, the iPad Mini is Apple’s 7.9-inch tablet that carries a dual-core 1GHz A5 processor, hosts 16/32/64GB of memory, and comes in Wi-Fi only and Wi-Fi + 3G variations. The unit in our office was Wi-Fi only and had 16GB of storage.

It’s exactly what its name says it is—it’s literally a smaller iPad with all the ports and buttons in the same place and having practically the same features and functions. It also appears to be thinner than the regular iPad, checking in at 7.2mm. The device was easy and comfortable to manipulate and hold in your hands, owing to its sleekness and lightness.

Of course, being a smaller device, the iPad Mini wields a smaller screen, yet as we see it, there isn’t much of a difference between the display of the iPad Mini and the original iPad (not the iPad with retina display). The device has a 7.9-inch LED-backlit Multi-Touch IPS display (1024 x 768-pixel resolution). On top, you can see the 1.2-megapixel FaceTime HD camera that has face detection and a back-illuminated sensor. The FaceTime HD camera can take 720p HD videos.

Out back, you’ll notice that it has a brushed aluminum surface. On the upper left corner, you’ll see the 5.0-megapixel iSight camera that has autofocus and face detection. The device can take 1080p HD videos, enables tap to focus while recording and features video stabilization and face detection.

As mentioned, the buttons and ports are pretty much the same as that of the iPad. On top, you’ll find the screen lock button and the 3.5mm audio jack. The left side features the MUTE switch and the volume rocker. Below is the port for Apple’s new Lightning connector.

We tried it out, running some of the applications onboard, and we’re happy to say that the iPad Mini was highly responsive and ran very smoothly. The retail package includes a Lightning to USB cable and a USB power adapter. As opposed to the older iPads, the iPad Mini comes with a 5-watt charger, which is the same charger that comes with iPods and iPhones. The regular iPads come with 10-watt chargers and the iPad with retina display comes with a 12-watt charger.

If you think about it, the iPad Mini is hardly anything new. But, again, it all goes back to the name of the device. Its main selling point is its more portable size compared to your regular iPad. That alone, for us, is a great reason why you ought to get one. It gives you the same value as the regular iPad at a lower price and at a smaller and lighter form factor. It’s a great buy for current iPad owners as well, especially if they want an upgrade in terms of portability.