“The iPad mini is a conflicted product,” Marco Arment blogs. “It’s much better than the iPad 3 and 4 to handle, carry, and hold up during use. It has the best external design of any iPad to date. It runs cooler than the iPad 3 or 4, it has almost the same battery life despite its much smaller size and weight, and it matches the iPad 2 and 3 in most performance benchmarks. It charges more quickly than the iPad 3 or 4, and it’s more versatile in charging, since it’s the first iPad able to charge at full speed from an “iPhone” AC adapter. The Smart Cover even sticks to the back better when it’s flipped around. And, of course, it’s much cheaper than the other iPads.”

“But the non-Retina screen is rough,” Arment writes. “If you’ve never used a Retina-screened device, you probably won’t care, but if you’ve been spoiled by Retina, you’ll notice the lack of it in the Mini almost every time you turn it on. I stop noticing after I start doing something with it, of course, but those first few seconds are a rough reminder every time.”

Arment writes, “A Retina screen at iPad resolution has a much higher cost than the price of the panel. I’m convinced that the other tradeoffs and costs are why the Mini doesn’t have a Retina screen. This isn’t theoretical: we can see the cost of Retina for ourselves with the iPads 3 and 4. The iPad 3 was the first Retina iPad and showed us the initial issues, and the iPad 4 shows us the best Retina iPad that Apple could ship with the technological improvements available since the iPad 3… That’s why we don’t have a Retina iPad Mini yet. It’s not only about price: it’s because the resulting product would suck in at least two other important ways.”

Much more in the full article – recommended – here.

Related articles:
Why Apple couldn’t make the iPad mini with a Retina display – November 13, 2012
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24 hours with Apple’s iPad mini: This is the real iPad – November 6, 2012
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The Independent reviews Apple’s iPad mini: High-end gadget is worth the price – October 31, 2012
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