So Apple have finally announced the iPad Mini, the
7 inch 7.9 inch tablet to rival the Nexus 7 and Kindle Fire.
Head over to the official iPad Mini page to get sucked into the Apple marketing blurb!
This is a significant event in modern Apple history, for the first time in a while, they are clearly following the market trend rather than leading it. But with Amazon and Google both making significant sales it became hard to ignore the 7″ form factor.
The Nexus 7 and iPad Mini Compared
So let’s see how the two tablets measure up:
- Operating System: This boils down to the usual iOS vs Android debate. Apple claim that the new iPad will be fully compatible with all current iPad apps, but it will be interesting to see if they can continue to diversify the Apple product line without running into problems.
- Size: The new Apple tablet is slightly bigger than the usual 7″ screen size. This allows Apple to maintain the same aspect ratio as its big brother. I guess that this will also be used to claim that the iPad’s size is just right, whilst the Google table is too small, must be fun working in marketing! In reality I suspect the iPad is just going to harder to hold with one hand, and a tighter fit in one’s pocket.
- Screen: The Nexus 7 wins this one 1280 X 800 (216PPI) vs 1024 x 768 (162PPI). Having had 10″ iPad owners go on and on about the importance of resolution it will be interesting to see if their belief holds…!
- CPU: Nexus 7 packs a quad core vs the Apples dual core. The Apple A5 chip is no longer cutting edge, you’ll even find it in the little ol’ iPod Touch, and it’s outperformed by the Nvidia Tegra 3 in every way.
- Camera: The iPad mini is the clear winner, it actually has a rear camera! The front camera is also capable of 720 HD video, something the Nexus 7 can do, but only with a tweak.
- Connectivity: The Apple iPad mini comes with the controversial new Lightning connector, instantly dismissing one of the old big selling points for Apple (a universal connector). The Nexus 7 uses good old USB, meaning your current peripherals are good to go.
- Storage: The Nexus 7 is about to get bumped to 32gb which makes really boosts the cost effectiveness of the Google tablet. The iPad mini has a 64gb model, but the cost seems fairly crazy to me – one for the real Apple fans only I think.
- Extras: Both have GPS, gyro, compass etc (unlike the Kindle Fire HD) but the Nexus 7 has embraced NFC technology. Apples refusal to include this could turn out to be a mistake if it continues to gain traction.
Any objective commentator has got to admit that the iPad Mini offers a slightly better package, but I don’t see the killer feature. Whilst a rear camera makes more sense at this size than on the 10″ model I still can’t see myself really needing it. The extra screen space is more interesting, and I’ll reserve judgement until I get to use one for real.
Should I buy a Nexus 7?
It’s not up to me to make the decision for you, personally I just don’t like iOS, I find it very limited, but no one can argue the iPad mini is a great piece of kit.
So the only real question is, is it worth the extra money?
For me this is always about looking at the functionality I need and finding the most cost effective solution. On that basis the Nexus 7 still comes out on top, however your needs may be different! The iPad’s launch price is over £100 more than the Google and Amazon rivals, for a tablet that’s supposed to appeal to impulse buyers… that really puts it into a different price bracket.
Find out more:
Have you made the choice, which did you go for and why? I’d love to hear from you either way!