The most expensive iPad mini 2021 is the best Apple has ever made

  • The sixth generation iPad mini.

    Andrew Cunningham

  • The new iPad mini compared to the 2020 iPad Air 4.

    Andrew Cunningham

  • Both tablets come in a few different pastel finishes; here’s the purple mini compared to the sky blue iPad Air.

    Andrew Cunningham

  • The new mini looks almost exactly identical to the iPad Air, from the flat edges to the rounded display with thin bezels.

    Andrew Cunningham

  • The iPad mini in its $ 59 “English Lavender” Smart Folio with a $ 129 Apple Pencil 2 taped to the top.

    Andrew Cunningham

  • The 12MP rear camera on the iPad mini is identical to that of the iPad Air 4, although that of the mini will benefit a bit from the updated ISP on the Apple A15.

    Andrew Cunningham

  • Both tablets use a USB-C port for charging and accessories.

    Andrew Cunningham

the new iPad mini—Whether you want to call it the iPad mini 2021, iPad mini 6, or iPad mini (6th generation), it’s easily the best Apple has ever made. That’s true whether you’re comparing this iPad mini to the old one or you’re comparing it to the other iPads that Apple sells.

The mini almost always seems to have the shorter end of the stick on the rare occasions when it is upgraded, it has been loaded with older and slower processors or inferior displays or outdated designs. This iPad mini, on the other hand, has a completely modern design and a state-of-the-art Apple A15 chip. It is a fantastic tabletYes you are the type of person who is already riding or dying for the iPad mini.

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That’s a big yes, because as good as the mini is, its position in Apple’s lineup is still awkward. the IPad for $ 329 (It was also just updated with a new chip and other tweaks) It is a great all-around tablet for price-conscious kids and adults. And the $ 599 iPad Air 2 it is slightly more expensive and has a larger screen that is better suited to the multitasking computer functions that Apple continues to add to iPadOS.

For now, we’ll focus on reviewing the mini on its own merits for people who already know they want one. Just know that none of the updates to the new model broadens its appeal if you’re already satisfied with another large-screen iPad or iPhone.

Look and feel

Specs roundup: Apple iPad mini 2021 (6th Gen)
Screen 2266 × 1488 8.3-inch touchscreen (326PPI) with True Tone
SW iPadOS 15
CPU Apple A15
RAM. 4GB
GPU Apple A15
Storage 64GB or 256GB
Networking Wi-Fi 802.11ax, Bluetooth 5.0 (optional add-on 5G / LTE)
Ports USB-C
Camera 12 MP rear camera, 12 MP wide-angle front camera
Size 7.69 × 5.3 × 0.25 inches (195.4 × 134.8 × 6.3 mm)
Weight 0.65 lbs (293g) for Wi-Fi model; 0.66 pounds (297g) for cell phone
Battery 19.3 Wh
starting price $ 499 (Wi-Fi only)
Other advantages Apple Pencil 2 support

The new iPad mini is more exactly an iPad Air mini: almost everything about its design comes directly from the fourth-generation iPad Air that Apple released in 2020.

That iPad Air took the basic design and physical dimensions of the 11-inch iPad Pro and cut some features to make it cheaper. The Air has a Power button-mounted TouchID fingerprint sensor instead of FaceID, a 60Hz Retina display without ProMotion support, an Apple A-series chip instead of a higher-performing M-series chip, and a basic rear camera without additional lenses or LIDAR sensors.

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The iPad mini is exactly that, only smaller.

Like the redesigned iPad Air, the new mini uses a thinner screen bezel across the entire screen, a USB-C port (but no headphone jack), and flat edges that allow the second-gen Apple Pencil to plug in, pair and charge. Its 8.3-inch screen with rounded corners is a tune narrower than the 7.9-inch screen on the previous mini, but its height increases enough to make the screen larger diagonally. Despite this, removing the Home button and reducing the screen bezel size makes the new mini about a quarter inch shorter than the old one while maintaining roughly the same width, depth, and weight.

Also like the Air, the new iPad mini comes in some subtle color options in addition to the typical space gray. Our review unit is the purple model, but pink and “Starlight” finishes are also available (Starlight falls somewhere between the silver and gold finishes of older iPads).

  • The Apple Pencil 2 is almost as long as the iPad mini itself.

    Andrew Cunningham

  • This is why Apple relocated the volume buttons to the top of the tablet, rather than their usual place on the right edge.

    Andrew Cunningham

There are actually only two major differences between the iPad Air 4 and the new iPad mini, aside from size: one is the volume buttons, which have been shifted from the right edge of the tablet to the top left, the same side. of the tablet. iPad that the power button is on. This frees up space on the right side of the tablet for the second-gen Apple Pencil to adhere to, as the stylus is almost as long as the tablet and there wouldn’t be enough room for it otherwise.

The second difference, and one that was also true of the previous iPad mini, is the continued absence of a smart connector on the back or edge of the tablet. There’s nothing stopping you from pairing a Bluetooth keyboard or keyboard case with the iPad mini and enjoying the same keyboard and trackpad support that other iPads have. But this replacement laptop carrying case is not a good choice for the mini’s small screen. The absence of a smart connector is a subtle hint from Apple that you should get one of the larger iPads if you want to do that kind of thing.

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Camera and speakers

The new iPad mini has improved cameras and redesigned speakers. The camera system is a combination of parts from the iPad Air 4 and the latest iPad Pros. From the Air 4, the new mini inherits a single-lens 12MP rear camera with an LED flash – the updated image signal processor on Apple’s A15 chip may marginally improve your photos compared to those taken by the iPad Air, but the photos of each camera looks similar in general. However, it is an appreciable improvement over the 8MP rear camera on the fifth-generation iPad mini.

The front camera, on the other hand, uses a 12MP sensor and a wide-angle lens like the one on the iPad Pro 2021 or the new $ 329 iPad. In addition to being able to capture more of your surroundings than before, the wide-angle lens allows “Central stage“Function for FaceTime and other compatible video calling applications. Center Stage enables a kind of pan and scan effect that will track you as you move within the camera’s field of view, which is useful if you are moving around a desk or counter or walk back and forth in a room, it works just as well on the iPad mini as it does on the iPad Pro or iPad 9th generation.

The new mini also inherits the four-speaker layout of the new iPad Air and Pros, with a pair of grilles on the top and bottom of the tablet (or on the left and right sides, in landscape mode; the stereo pan changes depending on the way the tablet is oriented). The mini’s speakers sound good for a device of this size, though they’re not nearly as good at bass or at filling a room with space like an iPad Pro or even a decent Bluetooth speaker. They’re great for FaceTime and YouTube, and they’re decent for dialogue-heavy movies and TV. The sound becomes more confusing when listening to loud and busy music or action sequences. So the speakers are ideal for a tablet of this size; There is only a limit to what the tiny speakers can do.

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