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Daniel Nations

The iPad 2 vs the iPad Mini: 5 Reasons Why the Mini Wins

By October 25, 2012

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Despite releasing both a new iPad (the iPad 4) and the long-expected iPad Mini, Apple will continue to sell the iPad 2, giving customers a $399 choice at a price point between the iPad Mini ($329) and the iPad 4 ($499). But while the iPad Mini shares the same A5 processor and 1024x768 resolution IPS display as the iPad 2, except for the size, the iPad Mini is superior. And for some, the 7.9-inch tablet weighing in at almost half the weight of an iPad 2 (.69 lbs vs 1.35 lbs) is sized just right.

Here are five ways in which the iPad 2 comes out ahead:

  1. 4G LTE. This is the big one for anyone planning on buying an iPad with data connectivity. The ability to connect to 4G networks will make the iPad Mini a much faster tablet while on the go. In many ways, computers and tablets are chained down by their weakest link, and no matter the processor speed, browsing the web will be first and foremost determined by connection speed.
  2. Better Cameras. The iPad 2 introduced front and back facing cameras to the iPad, but they were far from breathtaking. The back-facing camera maxed out at 960x720 and the front-facing "FaceTime" camera only had VGA quality. The iPad Mini has the same cameras found in the iPad 4: A 5 MP iSight camera in back and a 720p HD video-capable camara in front. So if you plan on taking video, photos or video conferencing via FaceTime, the iPad Mini is by far superior. How to Use FaceTime on the iPad
  3. Siri. Given that the iPad Mini has the same processing power as the iPad 2, the only reason why Apple allows Siri on the iPad Mini and not the iPad 2 is to give the Mini a bragging point. That said, Siri won't work on the iPad 2, so if you want to talk to your device and receive somewhat intelligent answers to your queries (depending on your question, of course), you'll want to skip the iPad 2. What Questions Can Siri Answer?.
  4. Higher Pixels Per Inch (PPI). It's not much, but while the two devices share the same 1024x768 resolution, the iPad Mini's 7.9-inch screen means this comes in at a higher pixels per inch (163 PPI vs 132 PPI), which gives it slightly better clarity.
  5. If you are patient, you can get one for $299. Obviously, the iPad Mini wins out on price, taking a $70 smaller bite out of your wallet. But if you are patient, you may just be able to get an iPad Mini for $299, which is the price many were hoping it would debut at. How? In a few months, refurbished units will begin hitting the Apple store. At the very minimum, the should debut for $30 off the price, and perhaps more.

Still thinking of an iPad 2? What if I told you that an iPad 3 is actually cheaper? Apple is selling refurbished iPad 3 tablets for $379, which is $20 cheaper than a brand new iPad 2. And refurbished units get a 1-year warranty, so if you run into a problem Apple will fix it for you.

The iPad 4 vs the iPad Mini

October 26, 2012 at 8:04 am
(1) Martijn van der Spek says:

The iPad 2 may not have Siri, but if you are looking for something similar to Siri on the iPad 2, try out Voice Answer. The app uses the same knowledge base as Siri and adds a 3D virtual assistant. Check it out at voiceanswer.com

October 26, 2012 at 12:07 pm
(2) ip says:

and the refurbished ipad2 is going for $319.

October 26, 2012 at 2:52 pm
(3) dean says:

In the sentence just before #1, don’t you mean to say, “Here are five ways in which the iPad Mini comes out ahead”?

October 30, 2012 at 1:42 am
(4) RaelissaIsabella says:

I have a choice whether to get an ipad2 or an ipad mini, I have no idea which one to get Help!

November 10, 2012 at 7:04 am
(5) dwirth says:

@Dean – I noticed that, too, Dean. The author should change it ASAP because when you do a search it comes up something to the effect, “5 reasons why iPad 2 is better.” Clearly, that’s not what the author meant.

June 1, 2013 at 12:38 am
(6) Sophie Elliard says:

Well, I’m trying to figure out why I don’t have a Siri off and on switch on my iPad. I have a iPad 2 and there is no why to turn on Siri. If anyone knows or is having this same problem, e-mail me at patriciaelliard@gmail.com with instructions on how and what to do… Thank you.

July 4, 2013 at 7:26 pm
(7) AppleGeek says:

Well, Patricia, that’s because your iPad 2 can’t have Siri, as Apple settled it for higher-standardized devices, such as the iPad’s 3, 4 and Mini. Your iPad can handle Siri, but Apple won’t let you use it. That’s why there is no on/off Siri switch: it’s not even supposed to be there anyways.

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