The wraps are off, the new Apple tablets are official. Say hello to the new 9.7" model, iPad Air (not 5), and the new 7.9" model, the iPad mini 2. The big news, of course, is that the mini model now has a Retina display.
The Apple iPad mini 2 still has a 7.9" screen with a 4:3 aspect ratio, but the resolution has quadrupled to 1536 x 2048 pixels and the pixel density has doubled to 324ppi.
The chipset was another part where the iPad mini lagged behind with a lowly dual-core Cortex-A9 processor. Apple has used its own Apple A7 chipset with ARMv8-based Cyclone cores, a couple of generations ahead of A9. The GPU got a major boost too and is a PowerVR SGX 6th series. The M7 motion co-processor is on-board too.
The TouchID rumors didn’t pan out and the mini 2 has a regular Home button. Another disappointment is that it's 0.3mm thicker (7.5mm) and 23g heavier (331g).
The Apple iPad mini 2 runs iOS 7 out of the box (of course) and storage options range from 16GB all the way to 128GB. Color options are just Silver & White and Space Grey & Black. As usual there will be Wi-Fi and 3G/LTE versions.
The Apple iPad mini 2 will be available in November starting at $399, which is notably higher compared to the $339 starting price of the first iPad mini last year.
Surprisingly, the original iPad mini will be kept alive at $299.
The Apple iPad Air brings a new name, new design and more power. It received the new Apple A7 chipset along with the M7 motion co-processor. The other major upgrade is the design – it's based on the iPad mini and has narrower bezels (43% smaller) that make the tablet easier to handle.
The tablet is 20% thinner and now measures just 7.5mm, thinner than the iPad 2. The weight also went down big time - from 653g to 469g.
Other than that you get a 9.7" IPS LCD screen with 1536 x 2048 pixel as before. The iPad Air didn't get the TouchID sensor either, but we doubt anyone will miss it.
Color options are Silver and white and Space gray and the storage options go all the way up to 128GB (starting at 16GB and doubling at each step).
The Apple iPad Air will be available on November 1 starting at $499.
By the way, the iPad 2 is still alive and will continue selling at $399 (it's three generations old now).
Here are the launch dates for the first wave and the map of LTE support:
Apple also unveiled a new type of case for the iPads, the Smart Cover. It's similar to the iPhone 5s cases as it covers the back and comes in a variety of colors.
For the iPad Air, the Smart Cases cost $79, while the iPad mini 2 Smart Cases cost $69. The cases are made of leather and com in come in Brown, Beige, Black, Yellow, Blue and PRODUCT (RED).
i can't see any reason to buy the new ipad mini ...i will keep my ipad mini until apple decides to put a 2 gb RAM and quad core ..
Event full of lies. See what I mean: http://microsoft-news.com/frank-shaw-slams-tech-press-asks-them-to-take-their-heads-out-of-apple-reality-distortion-field/
Usually when people want to buy tablet, they buy tablet and not laptop or computer...