Image Source: Martin Hajek
A couple days ago we learned that Apple’s special event with their expected unveiling of the iPad Mini (or whatever name is given to the new smaller iPad) is set for next Tuesday, October 23. After months of rumors and leaks we should get an official announcement of the iPad Mini in just a few days.
So this seems as good a time as any to talk about why the iPad Mini is exciting. Here are some of the reasons I’m excited about it:
A 7-8 Inch Tablet Is An Attractive Option: One of my favorite tech writers, Kevin C. Tofel, has been singing the praises of smaller tablets for a long while now, and it seems his writing even helped convince Apple’s management team to reconsider this form factor. The popularity of devices like the Kindle Fire and Google’s Nexus 7 is further evidence that this size of tablet has some market traction. Having used a Kindle Fire and the new Kindle Fire HD, I am hoping that the rumors of the iPad Mini being much closer to 8 inches (7.85 is the consensus) prove true. Firstly because my understanding is that this will allow iPad apps to run at 1024X768 and developers won’t have to redo their apps for the iPad Mini, and also because my eyes are old and the slightly bigger display on the smaller iPad will be more comfortable for them.
It Lets More People Experience the iPad: It’s expected that the iPad Mini will have a substantially lower price point than the current iPad – most likely starting at somewhere between $250 – $330. Of course this isn’t as low as 7 inch tablets from Amazon and Google, but there will be plenty of folks happy to pay a little more for the clear leader in the tablet arena, and for the apps and ecosystem the iPad offers. It will extend the iPad line and expand its market share again.
iPad Will Get Even Bigger in Education: The iPad has already had a big impact in education – being adopted by schools from K-12 right through to the most blue-chip of universities. One of the only factors weighing against its adoption has been price. A smaller, considerably less expensive iPad should give a huge boost to iPad’s momentum in this space.
It’s Another Step in the Post-PC Era: I was talking about this the other day with a friend and writing colleague. The iPad Mini will start out as another ‘tweener’ sort of device or some of us who already own an iPad and an iPhone, and many will ask where it fits in or what device does it replace – there are already people speculating on how much the iPad Mini will cannibalize sales of the full-size iPad. For me, the iPad Mini feels like another step farther into the Post-PC era. Right now I use the iPad far more than my iPhone and use a MacBook Pro as my ‘desktop’ PC. The iPad is not able to fully replace my laptop just yet, but I don’t think that day is so far away. At that point I can see myself using the iPad Mini as my primary portable device and the full-size iPad as my main computer in my home office.
Those are some of my main reasons for feeling hugely excited about the iPad Mini. How about you all? Are you excited about the iPad MIni? If so, what are your big reasons?