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iPad Mini Without Retina

Published November 20, 2012

iPad MiniA couple weeks ago, we received the new iPad Mini at the office. I wanted to let you know how it felt switching from an iPad 3 (iPad Retina Display 2011) to an iPad Mini (without Retina display).

I am not a typical iPad user, I use it pretty much for two purposes. (1) To give presentations both for client meetings and for my search talks and (2) to do the daily Daf Yomi on the Artscroll app (includes beta testing).

Let's start with what is a set back for me. Switching to the iPad Mini has two drawbacks for me:

iPad Mini

(1) Connecting the iPad to displays is harder because of the limited availability of the Lightning connector and adapter. That is less of an issue today, since I recently received my adapter, but it is still somewhat of an issue. The good thing is that we use an Apple TV in our office, so that process is seamless but when I do presentations outside of the office (which is often) it is more of an issue.

(2) iPad Mini doesn't have a Retina Display. I've been using the Retina display on my iPhone for years and on my iPad 3 for a year. So switching to a less crisp display is very noticeable, especially the first week or so. It is one of the things that still bother me today about it. I miss the crisp display and the higher resolution graphics. It is hard to get use to switching back to a non-retina display.

I Am Sticking With the iPad Mini

Despite the two issues above, I just love how light and portable the iPad Mini is. I can even fit it in most of my pant pockets. The iPad 3 felt way too heavy for me. I didn't like taking it with me on trips. I didn't like holding it. The mini is a pleasure and so lightweight.

The weight and flexibility of the device in my hand far outweighs the retina display.

If I had to give someone buying advice, well, it depends on purpose. If it is staying at home or in the office, then go with the larger iPad. If you are traveling with it and you really want Retina, then wait for the Mini to get a Retina display. Otherwise, I'd go with the Mini.

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Barry Schwartz is the CEO of RustyBrick, a New York Web service firm specializing in customized online technology that helps companies decrease costs and increase sales. Barry is also the founder of the Search Engine Roundtable and the News Editor of Search Engine Land. He is well known & respected for his expertise in the search marketing industry. Barry graduated from the City University of New York and lives with his family in the NYC region.

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