Apple's iPad Mini was announced on Wednesday and initial reactions to the device where that it's too expensive and that it isn't a good alternative to either Google's Nexus 7 and Amazon's Kindle Fire HD.
We thought we'd give a quick review of how Apple's device stacks up and whether it's a viable alternative to its more affordable rivals.
iPad Mini v Google Nexus 7 & Amazon Kindle Fire HD
The Google Nexus 7 (pictured below) and Amazon Kindle Fire HD are affordable tablets that are very similar in size to Apple's iPad Mini. However, both devices are priced well below Apple's tablet with the Nexus 7 costing £159 for an 8GB model and the Kindle Fire costing the same amount for a 16GB model.
While, the iPad Mini costs £269 for a 16GB WiFi only model, which is over £100 more than the Nexus 7 and Kindle Fire HD. So what extra do you get for your money ?
The iPad Mini does have a larger 7.9 inch touch-screen compared to 7 inches on both Google's and Amazon's tablets. However, the display runs at a lower resolution (1024*768 pixels) compared to 1280*800 pixels on the other two devices. We can't deny it's pretty disappointing that Apple didn't include a 720p display on the iPad Mini !
So what about the processor ? Well, the iPad Mini has a dual-core A5 processor which we think runs at 1 GHz, while the Kindle Fire HD (pictured below) has a dual-core 1.2 GHz processor . That makes it a very close call between the two, but Google's tablet roars ahead with it's quad-core processor.
So far not so good for the iPad Mini, but it does have some strengths of its own. Firstly, the build quality of the device is significantly above both the Kindle Fire HD and Nexus 7 with Apple's device looking and feeling ever bit the premium device.
Secondly, you get a rear-facing 5 mega-pixel camera on the iPad Mini with both Google Nexus 7 and Kindle Fire HD only featuring a front-facing cameras. Additionally, even though the price is far higher (starting at £369) the iPad Mini is the only device to support 3G and it gets even better because 4G LTE is also supported.
The iPad Mini is of course the only compact tablet running on the iOS platform which is adored and familiar with so many people. For that reason alone Apple will sell a huge amount of iPad Mini's , especially to current iPhone owners looking to invest in a tablet.
To conclude Apple's device is more expensive with a lower specification, but Apple's devices always demand a premium and the iPad Mini has a higher build quality than the Nexus 7 and Kindle Fire HD. Additionally, those looking for a 4G LTE device currently don't have a choice but we expect that to change in the next couple of weeks when Google unveil their new Nexus tablet range.
In 3G's eyes Apple have built the iPad Mini to compete directly with the Nexus 7 and Amazon Kindle Fire. They've priced it just to come into consideration to those thinking of an affordable tablet, but we believe it's mostly aimed at those looking for a more compact or affordable alternative to the full iPad.
For that reason it could even be seen as a true rival to the latest iPad or the iPad 2, which has a similar specification and price. We'll be bringing you an article shortly comparing the iPad, iPad Mini or iPad 2 . Whatever the outcome we're sure that Apple will sell bucket-loads of iPad Mini's !
By Simon Thomas on 25th October, 2012