Since the first version was released back in 2010, Apple’s iPad has remained at the top of the tablet heap as the most popular device chosen by both consumers and businesses. But competitors have recently tried to find a way into the market by offering smaller, less expensive models.
For example, Google recently launched its own Nexus 7, a tablet with a 7-inch screen and a starting price of $199. Amazon followed soon after with the Kindle Fire HD, the second generation of the company’s 7-inch, $199 tablet.
To try and keep buyers away from those new options, Apple has come out with a new tablet of its own – the iPad Mini, announced on October 23, with pre-orders beginning three days later.
While Apple didn’t announce a sub-$200 tablet as many were hoping, the iPad Mini, with a 7.89-inch screen and a starting price of $329, is being offered as mid-point between the original iPad and the offerings from Google and Amazon in terms of size and cost.
So the question on the minds of consumers and businesses: How does the iPad Mini stack up against those tablets? Here’s a comparison of some of the key features:
As written above, the iPad Mini will feature a 7.9-inch screen, smaller than the 9.7 inches in previous versions of the iPad. The resolution is lower, at 1024 x 768 pixels, but the smaller size should make up for the difference.
In comparison: The Nexus 7 and Kindle Fire tablets both have 7-inch displays – however, they also offer higher resolutions than the iPad Mini, at 1200 x 800 for both tablets.
2. Hardware specifications
Despite the smaller screen, the iPad Mini is basically the same as the iPad 2 on the inside. It contains the same 512 GB of RAM and dual-core A5 processor as that predecessor. As for storage space, the iPad Mini will be available in 16 GB, 32 GB and 64 GB models, like previous versions of the iPad. It also features 1.2-megapixel front-facing camera, and a 5-megapizel camera in the back.
In comparison: The Nexus 7 and Kindle Fire HD come with 1 GB of RAM and feature quad-core and dual-core processors, respectively. For storage space, the iPad Mini has a comfortable lead over the Nexus 7, which comes in 8 GB and 16 GB options (though a 32 GB version is rumored to be coming out soon). The Kindle Fire HD is available with 16 GB or 32 GB. Both competitors have a front-facing camera like the iPad Mini, but neither have a rear camera.
Like previous versions of the tablet, the iPad Mini is available in Wi-Fi-only models, or models with cellular data capabilities, via a 4G LTE connection.
In comparison: Cellular connectivity is one area in which the iPad has an advantage over its competition. Currently, the Nexus 7 and the 7-inch version of the Kindle Fire HD are Wi-Fi-only. However, there is more expensive 8.9-inch Kindle Fire HD with LTE available, and a 3G-enabled Nexus 7 is rumored to be in development.
The base model of the iPad Mini — Wi-Fi only with 16 GB of storage —costs $329. The 32 GB and 64 GB versions of the iPad Mini cost $429 and $529, respectively, while models with cellular data capability run $459, $559 and $659 for the different storage options.
In comparison: As mentioned earlier, the 7-inch Kindle Fire HD and Nexus 7 start at $199. For the Kindle Fire HD, that gets you 16 GB of storage, while the base model of the Nexus 7 has 8 GB. Both the 16 GB Nexus 7 and Kindle Fire HD cost $249.
Author Bio:- Sam Narisi is a senior technology editor for Progressive Business, covering mobile, security, and how the latest tech developments impact businesses. Connect with Progressive Business on LinkedIn.