The iPad Mini: Why You (And Journalists) Should Care?

October 25, 2012

ipad mini, tablets

 

Pre-ordering for the iPad mini begins this Friday and the only question on my mind is “why should I care?” I am already an owner of a MacBook Pro, iPhone 4s, and a slightly old, okay, in the tech world really old, iPod Nano. Buying an iPad has always seemed redundant to me, but for some reason adding the word “mini” to the name has me intrigued.

The previous iPad which has a 9.7 inch display seemed too big. I already carry around my 13-inch computer - the last thing I wanted was to throw another large electronic that seemed to do the same things a computer does - into my already ridiculously heavy backpack. However, this new iPad with a 7.9 inch display appears more manageable, and the smaller size makes it much more desirable. Plus, the cheaper than the regular iPad price doesn’t hurt either.

But again I ask myself, what would I use it for? Then it dawned on me my backpack could be lighter if i started buying my textbooks on a tablet and my life could be more informed if I started reading the newspaper on a tablet due of my current aversion to newspapers because of the black residue it leaves on my hands. 

When I took to the web to research how other people use their tablet, it seems I wasn’t the first to decide that consuming media is easier and, if people are being honest, cleaner on an electronic device. It turns out 37% of tablet owners read the news on their device at least once a month. 

Not only are people consuming their media via tablets, media is increasingly delivering its news on tablets. Newsweek even announced that as of December 31st it will no longer provide print publications, and it is converting to be all digital and tablet optimized. This announcement and other statistics about the changing media world have made me think that I need to jump on the tablet bandwagon.

With my new found fear of being left behind, purchasing a tablet is now vital. The iPad mini just became even more intriguing. However, I realize I have options. Why would the iPad mini be any better than the Kindle Fire, Nook Tablet or for that matter the regular iPad? Like any good consumer, I evaluated what I would want from my tablet and compared what each offers in those categories.

iPad Mini Kindle Fire Nook Tablet iPad
 
Price: $329 $159 $199 $399
 
Size: 7.9” 7” 7” 9.7”
 
GB: 16 8 16 16
(with price above)
 
Battery Life: 10 9 9 10
(hours)

Given this information above, I am still not sold on the iPad mini. The Nook Tablet seems to fulfill my criteria almost as well as the iPad and with a cheaper price. However, this is a very limited list. I would also have to look at the apps provided, the ease of use and the compatibility with my current Apple products. But, the list definitely gave me a good start. 

In my opinion, Apple’s move to a smaller tablet was a smart one because a product like a tablet wasn’t even on my radar until it introduced one that intrigued me. Now, something that seemed useless has now entered my “need” category all because of a simple redesign.