Apple is expected release a redesigned iPad mini this fall. Its oft-forgotten tablet, the 7.9-inch iPad mini has been overshadowed in recent years by the standard iPad and newly redesigned iPad Air and iPad Pro.
Bloomberg says the the new device will adopt thinner bezels, offer faster performance, and mirror the iPad Air’s new design with sharper corners and a Touch ID home button that itself was taken from the iPad Pro. The new tablet will likely include a larger display around 8.5 to 9-inches, but retain the same overall size.
Misfit tablet — The iPad mini hasn’t changed much since it was released in 2012. It’s hard to understand why one would even buy the iPad mini at this point, which at $399 costs $80 more than the standard iPad with its larger 10.2-inch display and virtually identical internals. The only major differences are that the iPad mini is more portable, and has a better 8-megapixel front-facing camera compared to the iPad’s 1.2 megapixel shooter.
The iPad mini is hard to recommend right now. But if you’re someone who absolutely needs the portability, a redesign with a larger screen in the same overall footprint could make it a nice around-the-house tablet. And we’d appreciate if it were offered in the wider range of colors available for the iPad Air.
Phablet or tablet? — The iPad mini was last updated in 2019, when Apple added support for the Apple Pencil as well as a faster A12 Bionic processor. The tablet has its fans, namely those people who want something that fills the gap between a phone and a bulky laptop or large tablet. But, arguably the iPad mini lost some of its luster when smartphone screens started becoming bigger, however, and referred to as “phablets.” The iPhone 12 Pro Max, for instance, has a 6.68-inch screen — not far off from the current iPad mini's screen.
Perhaps a makeover and newer features will reinvigorate iPad mini sales... and let Apple forget about it again for another seven or eight years.