With Apple leading the way in the tablet market, the American giant has continued to push the boat out by releasing the iPad Air and its new iPad Mini with Retina Display. Apple has launched a series of new iPads in recent years, but the real question is, which one is the best?
Here we take a look at the iPad Air vs iPad Mini with Retina display.
The iPad specs…
On the front of it, both tablets are pretty much the same, except for the obvious difference in size. The Air comes in with a 9.7-inch screen, whilst the Mini weighs in with a 7.9-inch Retina Display.
The Mini looks slightly sharper, as it packs in 326 pixels per inch (ppi); a little more than the Air’s 264ppi. However, unless you get your magnifying glass out you won’t be able to make out any real difference in picture quality.
Both tablets sport identical screen resolutions (2048 x 1536), the same A7 processing chip, the same rear mounted iSight 5 megapixel camera and even the same colour designs (black or white). But the Air runs ever so slightly quicker than its smaller counterpart.
The only other true difference we could find was with the displays of both models; the Mini seems to have a slightly more washed out look when viewing your media, but again this difference is hard to point out unless you are comparing them side by side and deliberately searching for a difference.
Also, colours seem to stand out slightly better on the iPad Air compared to the Mini, though this has a lot more to do with the size of the screen itself.
Both tablets run over 10 hours of battery life fairly comfortably and can be bought all the way up to their 128GB models if you need a hefty amount of internal storage. If you would rather have the internet on the go, both models can feature cellular connectivity, which requires a SIM card and a contract.
In truth, the main difference between the iPad Air and the iPad Mini lies in their price tag; the Mini starts at £319, whilst the Air’s cheapest model sits at £399, obviously rising as you increase memory capabilities.
Which iPad is the best value for money?
The real decision you face choosing between the two tablets is the size and price of your tablet. Are you willing to pay the extra £80 to benefit from a larger screen, or would you prefer to save the cash to have a smaller, easier to carry tablet?
This also comes down to what you are planning on using the tablet itself for; if you do a lot of work on it for example, you might edge towards the Air, as it’s slightly more comfortable to work with due to its bigger screen size. Additionally, the iPad Air fits a keyboard a bit more effectively, allowing you to type out long emails and documents like a traditional computer.
However, if you want the tablet for entertainment purposes, whether it’s watching films, playing games or downloading books for long journeys, you might want to opt for the Mini, which is smaller, lighter and easier to handle with one hand.
Both look incredibly good and run smoothly, with the Air winning by an extremely tight margin when it comes to speed.
If you have some more room in your bag and a little more cash, then edge toward the Air, but if you fancy saving £80 and having an iPad with near identical levels of performance, just a couple inches smaller, then the Mini might be your dream device.
Free iPad with phone contract
Alternatively, if you don’t fancy shelling out a penny for either iPad, why not look into getting a free iPad with a mobile phone contract? You can choose from a whole range of smartphones and the good thing is, whether you opt for the iPad Air or the iPad Mini, you’ll still be on to a winner.