What is the iPad mini Case Situation Going Forward? or There Are Probably Some Pissed-Off Case Makers This Morning
I'm sure I wasn't the only one during Apple's iPad mini w/ Retina Display reveal who found it a bit suspicious that during the reveal they didn't even mention the weight or thickness of it after talking so much about how much slimmer and lighter the iPad air is than previous generations. The specs for the new devices were up on Apple's website almost immediately after the event, and sure enough, the new mini is slightly heavier (.05 lbs. or 23g) and slightly thicker (.01 of an inch or .3mm).
Let me first just say that I honestly don't understand why Apple would even consider making the new iPad mini even thicker. The only reason to do this would seem to be battery life, and that seems like a pretty poor reason as a slightly smaller battery may result in slightly less usable time, but not enough to matter much. It is possible, however, that adding the retina screen added some thickness that they were completely unable to do anything about this time around.
The extra weight, although not welcome, doesn't present any real problems. It's not enough to worry about and won't change how easy it is to handle. The extra thickness, however, seems like it could cause some case manufacturers some headaches. Apple is marketing their new Smart Case as fitting both the iPad mini and the iPad mini w/ Retina Screen. Many other case designs probably have enough space within their tolerances to handle the additional thickness as well (folio cases are likely fine), but a lot of the shell type cases probably won't work on both models, nor will anything with tight tolerances. As I tend to gravitate towards the shell-style cases for their light weight, I'm bummed that I may have to wait a while (and possibly endure some market confusion) until we get an option that's going to work. Anyone have any thoughts on the subject?