This review is about 6 months late as the iPad mini was released last December 2012. But since there is no new announced iPad mini yet, this is still the latest model. Moreover, this review is done after months of usage so this is based on long-term experience with the iPad mini.
It’s easy to hold
I must say that since getting the iPad mini, I did not want to go back to the big iPad. The mini is so thin, light, and the size fits just right in my hands and an easy fit in my bag. It’s so much easier to hold because of the lighter weight and the grip is so much more natural to the hand. No need to flex/stretch your fingers. Very minimal effort.
It’s very thin and light
The iPad mini weights just 0.68 pounds. This makes it one of the lightest tablet to pickup. It’s very slim too and as you can see below it’s just about the same thickness as an iPhone 5.
Lightning Port and Speakers
The iPad Mini also features the new lightning port as Apple has already transitioned from the old 30-pin connector. The iPad mini, iPhone 5, iPod Touch 5, iPad 4, and all new products will use the smaller port. However, the the speakers on the iPad mini still sadly disappoints. It’s weak volume is fairly decent in a quite room but try to use it in an airport or some public place and it is crap. I suggest to have a handy pair of good earphones with you.
Non-retina display but still very workable
While most of the people holding out and waiting for the next generation iPad mini is because of the display, for me the current display is still very workable. It features a 7.9 inch LED-backlit display with a 1024×768 resolution at 163 pixels per inch (PPI). So while the ppi falls short, real-life use has found it very acceptable. So it depends on you, if you are not in a hurry or have no immediate need, it may be worth it to hold out a little more and see what the next generation will bring. On the other hand, technology will always keep updating so if you are always after just the “latest”, you will always be waiting while life passes you by.
The iPad mini is perfect for reading. I love to read magazines, ebooks, and even comics on it. I am not into iOS gaming so I can’t say or review how it is for gaming but it does fairly ok for games like Injustice, Candy Crush, etc.
For me the use of the iPad mini is primarily a reading device. Web pages, Flipboard, and even Facebook are all simply perfect for it. Battery life is good as well especially if you don’t play graphic intensive games on it.