After some initial trials, what do critics make of Apple’s new iPad mini -- particularly compared to Amazon’s Kindle Fire? Well, in The Wall Street Journal, Walt Mossberg says the mini “does exactly what it promises: It brings the iPad experience to a smaller device.”
“You could argue that the iPad Mini is what the iPad always wanted to be," David Pogue gushes in The New York Times. “Over all, the Mini gives you all the iPad goodness in a more manageable size, and it's awesome.”
Citing a positive industry response, Venture Beat writes: “Truly living up to the mini name, many reviewers found that it was more convenient to use than the larger iPad.”
The mini’s price could be a problem, however. Priced from $329 to $659, “The iPad mini has to be viewed in a world with a $199 Nexus 7 or Kindle Fire HD -- two strong performers that are a far cry, at least in price, from the iPad mini,” The Verge writes.
“It's not the least bit startling that Apple chose not to take on the $199 7-inchers directly,” Harry McCracken writes in Time. “They're all clad in plastic cases, and their makers price them at the break-even point … in hopes of turning a profit on later sales of books, videos, apps and other content … The Mini is nice, period."
Yet, the screen appears to be a sticking point for some reviewers.
“Let's not beat around the bush,” MG Siegler writes in TechCrunch. “f there is a weakness of this device, it's the screen.” The problem? “As someone who is used to a 'retina' display … the downgrade to a non-retina display is quite noticeable.”
Overall, “the new iPad mini is an incredibly compelling alternative [to the latest full-screen] iPad, a device so good that perhaps this update was released so soon after its predecessor to maintain the appeal of the bigger, more expensive unit,” Engadget writes.