The latest iPad mini rumors don’t make for happy reading, especially if you’re keen to see an iPad mini with Retina display. And let’s face it, I think that most everyone using an iPad mini, or thinking about getting one, would love to see it have a Retina display added.
The iPad mini is already a superb device, but the addition of a Retina display would make it a near-perfect tablet. Sadly, there seems to be a growing number of rumors suggesting that Apple will not be ready to release the iPad mini Retina (or whatever it gets named) until 2014. An article today at 9to5Mac highlights a report from Digitimes that says Apple will release a ‘slightly updated’ version of the iPad mini by the end of this year and then Retina version in early 2014.
I also noticed that John Gruber of Daring Fireball had this to say on another report about the iPad mini Retina version not coming out in 2013:
(I’d love to be wrong, but I don’t think it’s going to happen this year.)
I am of course still hoping that this latest report is inaccurate, and that we will see an iPad mini with Retina display this year. The idea of a just slightly improved iPad mini late this year and then a Retina model early next year sounds odd too. Then again, this has been a pretty strange year for Apple product release cycles all the way around. Hopefully Apple will enlighten us all in a couple months.
Refurbished models of the iPad mini now start at just $299 on the Apple online store. That price is for the baseline 16GB WiFi only model and it’s a $30 discount on the standard price.
There are refurb models available for the full iPad mini range now – from 16GB to 64GB and both WiFi and WiFi + Cellular – though which specific models are in stock at any given moment will vary as many appear to be selling very rapidly. When I first hit the Apple store page today there were no 16GB units available. After a few minutes and a manual page refresh a black 16GB unit showed as in stock and ready to ship.
I’ve bought refurbished iDevics in the past and have had only stellar experiences with them. If you’re looking to get an iPad mini, it’s well worth keeping an eye on the Apple store page for the refurb models.
I handed down my still-very-new iPad mini 32GB to my 10 year old daughter, Zoe, a little over a week ago – when I switched up to a 64GB model.
My original plan was to sell my 32GB iPad mini, which is in mint condition, to help cover the cost of the bigger model. Then I thought about how much use Zoe could get out of it, about the outstanding school year she has had as a 4th grader. About how she has been using an original iPad for years now and has become a real power user – and it didn’t take long to change my plan and give her the 32GB iPad mini.
I thought Zoe would get tons more good use from the iPad when she changed to the iPad mini, and that has absolutely proved to be the case. It’s great to see how much she is using it. Even greater: seeing that by far and away her biggest use of it is for reading. She is devouring 1,000 and 1,500 page books in iBooks. The Kane Chronicles series is a particular favorite right now. When I walk past the living room and she’s stretched out comfortably on the couch, she’s reading in iBooks. She now takes the iPad mini to school in her backpack several days a week and is allowed to use it for reading only when her class has their reading periods.
I bought a new iPad mini yesterday. That’s after I just bought one last November on launch day for the new smaller iPad – and knowing of course that we’ll see a new iPad mini at some point this year, which will in some way or other be much better than the one I just bought.
Sounds a bit crazy right? Well, there’s actually a simple, good reason for the purchase. As I spoke about in my review of the iPad mini, the newest, smallest iPad won me over just about immediately. I knew very early on that the wonderful lightness and form factor of the iPad mini more than compensated for the lack of retina display for me.
Now that I’ve owned the iPad mini for a little over four months, a couple of things have become very clear to me:
— The iPad mini is by far and away my most used device. I’d say the usage breakdown for me between the iPad 3 and the iPad mini is about 80-20 in the small tablet’s favor.
— 32GB is not enough space for me on the iPad mini. When I was buying the iPad mini back in November my thinking was that 32GB would be plenty, as I had another 64GB on the iPad 3. Over the last couple of months though I’ve struggled to keep a decent amount of free space on the iPad mini – because it has become my go-to device.
A post at the NPD DisplaySearch blog predicts that smaller tablets are set to take over in 2013, and that the iPad mini will far outsell the iPad.
The January panel shipment data may be an indicator for 2013, starting with Apple’s product mix shift. As we noted in December, Apple had planned to sell 40M iPad minis (7.9”) and 60M iPads (9.7”) in 2013. However, the reality seems to be the reverse, as the iPad mini has been more popular than the iPad. We now understand that Apple may be planning to sell 55M iPad minis (7.9”) and 33M iPads (9.7”) in 2013.
I don’t find this sort of prediction very surprising. Like many others, I was initially a bit skeptical about how compelling a device the iPad mini would be, especially once we learned it would not have a retina display. But within just a couple days of using one I was already wondering how much use my ‘big’ iPad would get. As it turns out, my usage pattern between the two of them is probably around 80-20 in favor of the iPad mini now.
For me, the wonderful lightness and form factor of the iPad mini more than compensate for the (current) lack of retina display. I know many others have found the same to be true – and they start realizing it within 5 minutes of picking up the iPad mini. And, as I said in my review of the iPad mini, when it gets a retina display it will be damn close to the perfect device.
What do you all think? Do you agree that the iPad mini will likely outsell the iPad by a wide margin this year?
Right now there is no shipping time delay at all when ordering an iPad mini from the US Apple online store. All the iPad mini models, WiFi and WiFi + cellular and all storage sizes, are listed as In Stock for the first time I can recall since the smaller iPad launched three and a half months ago.
It was only just at the beginning of this month that ship times for the iPad mini came down to 1-3 days – presumably as Apple’s supply chain began to catch up with demand for the device.
Great news for anyone looking to buy an iPad mini, and hopefully for Apple as well, as long as this is an indication of supply catching up with demand and not of demand weakening.
It’s always good to see companies recognize and reward their employees when they have success. Apart from doubling up vacation days, there are probably not too many more popular rewards than a free iPad these days.
And that’s exactly what all the employees at LinkedIn got this week. As TechCrunch reported, iPads were given out to all 3,500 of LinkedIn’s employees because of the great success the company had in 2012. A spokesman told TechCrunch:
We wanted to acknowledge the hard work and accomplishments of all of our employees in 2012. During today’s bi-weekly All Hands meeting, we surprised our employees with iPad Minis as a small gesture of the company’s gratitude for their contributions.
Wonder what the company has planned if they have an even greater 2013?
It looks like Apple’s supply chain may now be catching up with demand for the iPad mini. Ship times for the iPad mini are down to just 1-3 days – and that’s for all models, WiFi and Cellular and all storage sizes.
This is very good news for anyone looking to buy an iPad mini for themselves or as a gift. And presumably good news for Apple too – as it appears there is still plenty of demand for the smaller iPad.
Are any of you planning to buy an iPad mini soon? Already have one?
That innocuous looking little fella above is proving to be quite a handy companion for my iPad mini. It’s an Apple 12W USB Power Adapter. I use it in tandem with the Lightning to USB cable that came with the iPad mini and I’m seeing very quick charge times with it.
When I let the iPad mini run all the way down until it powers down automatically, I can get it charged from zero to 100% in under 3 hours. I’ve done this a number of times and consistently seen it take around 2 hours and 45 – 55 minutes.
That feels pretty fast to me – especially as I’ve seen some people online mentioning 5 and 6 hour charge times for their iPad minis.
I’m feeling like the $19 investment in the 12W power adapter was well worthwhile.
For those of you with iPad minis, how fast is your charging typically? Are you using a 12W adapter?
It looks like the iPad mini may be a big hit in China. As Apple Insider reports, at least one Wall Street analyst says the iPad mini is proving hugely popular just a few weeks after its release in China:
Brian White of Topeka Capital Markets said his checks in China and Hong Kong have found there is “insatiable demand” for the iPad mini. While Apple’s smaller iPad launched in Hong Kong on Nov. 2, nearly all models of the 7.9-inch tablet were completely sold out this week.
And in mainland China, the iPad mini went on sale Dec. 7, where it was also met with strong interest. The iPad mini has also been out of stock at Apple’s retail stores in China this week, White said.
“Prior to the China launch, we indicated that the iPad mini would be the ‘next big thing in China’ and we believe this phenomenon is starting to develop,” he said. “In our view, the smaller form factor and lower price point will allow Apple to sell the iPad mini in more meaningful volumes versus the regular-size iPad.”
White also finds that the iPad mini is proving more popular than the new iPad 4. I have to say I’m not surprised. As I said in my review of the iPad mini, I think even without a retina display the lightness and form factor of the new smaller iPad make it a real winner. I also know after nearly 2 months of owing both the iPad mini and an iPad 3 that I am becoming much more attached to the smaller iPad.
What do you all think? Will the iPad mini end up outselling the larger iPad soon?
Apple’s latest TV ad for the iPad mini is titled ‘I’ll Be Home’ and features a young girl and her granddad sharing a moment on FaceTime. I think it manages to stay just on the right side of the line between adorable and cheesy.
What do you all think of this latest iPad mini ad?