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“Every inch an iPad” is how Apple marketed the original iPad mini (2012). That was mostly true. While the iPad mini (2012) did finally give consumers a smaller, more portable iPad, what they really got was essentially a miniaturized iPad 2 (2011). It didn’t have a Retina display and its processing power and gaming capabilities suffered because it was running on such old hardware. Not to mention, the iPad mini (2012) struggled to run iOS 7.

Alongside the iPad Air, Apple released the iPad mini with Retina display. Not only did its screen get upgraded to a Retina one, but Apple also brought brought processing parity to the smaller tablet. There is no longer a performance gap between the smaller and larger iPad — both became equal in everything but screen size.

Of course, the iPad mini with Retina display costs more than its predecessor — starting at $399 versus $299. Just as the iPad Air has competitors attacking it from all sides, so too does the iPad mini with Retina display. Let’s see if the iPad mini with Retina display is still the best mini tablet compared to its new rivals, shall we?

Context

I’m a multi-device user. I use a MacBook Air for doing all my “real” work. I use my iPhone 5 to perform short tasks such as sending quick emails, messaging and tweeting. For reading online articles I’ve saved in Feedly and Pocket, I prefer to use an iPad mostly because it’s a lean-back-on-the-sofa and sit-in-bed type of device that isn’t as as bulky as a laptop.

I’m still hanging onto my aging iPad 3 for my tablet needs, but hope to give it to my dad and upgrade to something newer, faster, and smaller — like the iPad mini.

Filed in Apple >Reviews >Tablets. Read more about iPad mini and Tablet Reviews.

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