Reviewed by malikona (Currently owns)
Build quality is second to none, performance and battery life are excellent, the form factor is almost perfect (I've read more books and comics in the few days I've owned the mini than in the previous year), and the quick-charging Lightning adapter is a huge improvement over the 30-pin connector.
However, the iOS interface still feels a little childish compared to Android 4.X, the thing is just a BIT too wide and could benefit from some more bezel on the sides, and touch targets for small OS elements (like the 'x' button in search fields) sometimes take me a dozen taps to hit. Apple needs to update some of the stock development features (small buttons mostly) to be larger on this display. Could definitely benefit from retina display (size, weight, and battery-life depending).
On balance this is an awesome device that I carry with me literally everywhere, but I am still not a fan of the endless pages of app icons and the cumbersome settings and notification center OS elements, which Android currently does much better. If this device ran Android 4.X, but still somehow ran all of the available iOS apps, and had a retina display in the same size and weight, it would be almost perfect. As it is, it's just...almost almost perfect.
I had sticker shock at first, but that's because everyone was speculating a sub-$300 price tag. Still, forking over $500 for a 32GB wi-fi only model w/smart cover, with no cellular data available, felt like a reaming. But, I paid it, and I won't be the only one. As many have said, Apple would have been leaving money on the table this season by charging much less.
- Design 9
- Display 7
- Camera(s) 7
- Speakers 10
- Performance 9
- Software 8
- Battery life 9
- Ecosystem 9
- Dock 9