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back to article Apple's iPad Mini mishap: scratching out the retina screen

Apple will undoubtedly sell more than enough iPad Minis to keep its shareholders happy. Its fans might be less impressed with the diminutive tablet. Sure, the new, small slate looks smart, but Apple seems to have taken little account of the competitive landscape. It’s true, in most respects its 9.7in iPad is well ahead of the …

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I do feel that

by sticking to their 4:3 aspect ratio they have removed one of the main reasons why people are going for the other 7" tablets. At what I assume in an inch or so wider it drastically reduces the ability to put it on a pocket and carry it with you. If its not portable you might as well go for the ipad 2 which has the same internals.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: I do feel that

Yes there are alternative tablets that do the same thing, just like your girlfriend/wife/partner.

BUT

Some girlfriends/wives/partners look better and perform better.

The difference between boredom and satisfaction. I just like mine to look better and perform better, but hey I'm shallow.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: I do feel that

seeing as the iPad mini is a very dull looking thing, not really sure what your point is...

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@A/C 21:21

I don't know about you, but I prefer girlfriends which are less wide!

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Re: @A/C 21:21

Wide is fine if she has height to match. It's all about aspect ratio.

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Devil

Re: @A/C 21:21

I think we can all agree that a slot to stick your expansion inside is the most important aspect. And in tablets too...

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Pockets generally aren't 1-dimensional…

So the 284mm circumference of the mini isn't THAT much larger than the 261mm circumference of the N7

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Re: Pockets generally aren't 1-dimensional…

The width could be an issue though. The N7 just slips into the back pocket of my jeans. I doubt an ipad mini would.

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Boffin

Re: Pockets generally aren't 1-dimensional…

It's nearly 10% bigger. Given that "fitting in pocket" is a binary state for a given tablet/pocket combination, and further given that the Nexus 7 just slips nicely into either a back jeans pocket or an inside jacket pocket with little width to spare, I think, as I predicted months ago, that the iPad Mini is too wide. Which rules it out for my uses.

GJC

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Anonymous Coward

why buy a £269 iPad Mini when you can have an equally serviceable Nexus 7 for £199

Because a Nexus doesn't have an Apple badge on it.

Apple is the BMW of the computer world, the badge is what metters.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: why buy a £269 iPad Mini when you can have an equally serviceable Nexus 7 for £199

A better question:

Why buy a £269 iPad Mini with only 16GB of storage when you can have an equally serviceable Nexus 7 with 32GB of storage for £199? <ref>

The answer is really no different of course : /

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Anonymous Coward

Re: why buy a £269 iPad Mini when you can have an equally serviceable Nexus 7 for £199

The nexus 7 is a plasticly flimsy piece of shit that people have had all manner of problems with. The apps are crap, merely scaled up phone apps. Google's customer service is lousy too.

http://www.guardian.co.uk/technology/2012/jul/22/nexus-7-glass-complaints-google

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Thumb Down

Re: why buy a £269 iPad Mini when you can have an equally serviceable Nexus 7 for £199

Bollocks. The Nexus 7 is a very decent bit of kit, and none of the apps I happen to be running - Kindle, Dropbox, WD2Go, Comixology, Dark Horse, Aldiko, WordWeb - are or feel scaled up. Any more than my iPad apps are scaled up iPhone apps

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Joke

Re: why buy a £269 iPad Mini when you can have an equally serviceable Nexus 7 for £199

@ AC

Oh, that's easy to fix. You can just defame it by putting an apple sticker on it!

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Facepalm

Re: why buy a £269 iPad Mini when you can have an equally serviceable Nexus 7 for £199

"http://www.guardian.co.uk/technology/2012/jul/22/nexus-7-glass-complaints-google"

Stop press: Whiny Guardian journos don't like thing that isn't Apple.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: why buy a £269 iPad Mini when you can have an equally serviceable Nexus 7 for £199

"Stop press: Whiny Guardian journos don't like thing that isn't Apple."

Correct, but it gets the required result .... see the comment in their coverage that Charles Arthur was provided with travel, accomodation and meals to attend to launch

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Facepalm

Re: why buy a £269 iPad Mini when you can have an equally serviceable Nexus 7 for £199

"Correct, but it gets the required result .... see the comment in their coverage that Charles Arthur was provided with travel, accomodation and meals to attend to launch"

Good grief.

Not that I'll give them my click-through traffic, just to check for myself though!

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Re: why buy a £269 iPad Mini when you can have an equally serviceable Nexus 7 for £199

Argh. Not him. He cannot seem to write an impartial editorial on any concept. He reports the news just fine...maybe he should stick to that.

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Re: why buy a £269 iPad Mini when you can have an equally serviceable Nexus 7 for £199

We just got a Nexus 7 (16GB version) here in the office for testing and it is built down to a price. It feels cheap, the screen aspect ratio isn't good for browsing because in landscape mode there isn't enough height and in portrait mode it is too narrow to use. It feels flimsy and isn't all that quick. Everyone agrees it isn't an iPad killer, less so an iPad mini killer. I know I would feel quite ripped if I had one and then tried an iPad.

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Thumb Up

Re: why buy a £269 iPad Mini when you can have an equally serviceable Nexus 7 for £199

I took delivery of the Nexus 7 on release day and have used it extensively since, both at work and home. I have generally found it to be a very capable device, but there are a couple of areas where it's performance suffers in comparison to the iPad 2 (and, by inference, the iPad mini) :

- PDF Reader : Apparently IOS uses proprietary native code denied to Android devs. Consequently N7 PDF readers render considerably slower than their iPad equivalents. As I primarily use my device at work to access scanned documents, this is a big deal for me.

- Media Player : The clunky Android BBC iPlayer is just awful and the IOS version of media players such as Plex are more polished.

- Rear Camera : Obviously, the N7 doesn't have one. I wonder how much this contributes to the price differential.

Although I was intially underwhelmed by the iPad announcement, on reflection I think the iPad mini will offer a better user experience given my usage pattern. For that reason, I'll be putting in my ordering my Mini tomorrow!

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Unhappy

Too much money for 16 gig.

Its not the product I'm unhappy with, its the price.

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Paris Hilton

Never mind the length...

...feel the WIDTH. It's all that matters. Feel that pocket stretch.

Paris, natch.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Never mind the length...

Time to rerun the old April 1st article about Apple moving into clothing which at that time was based around the Apple Newton which also had the "too big for a pocket" reputation - so the spoof ad ran with the tag line "just like normal clothes, except bigger pockets"

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Anonymous Coward

So, the Nexus 7 is significantly cheaper, easier to hold, and has a higher resolution. That will appeal to people who like to make rational decisions. Are there any left?

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No idea. The Nexus also is heavier, thicker, has a smaller screen and hardly any apps apart from scaled-up smartphone apps that make you use the menu and back buttons all the time while the screen is half empty.

And yes, I own a Nexus 7. It made me appreciate the form-factor just enough to lust after a similar sized tablet with decent apps quite a bit. I would agree though that the iPad mini is a bit on the expensive side. Still, I don't doubt a second that it will sell very well, and for good reasons.

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Anonymous Coward

I'm still here! Also waiting, I hope for a 32GB model coming in next week with 16GB shuffling down to £170 - think that leaves the iPad mini as the preserve of those who like their tech to be "reassuringly expensive" with the only remaining issue is whether saving £30 by foregoing an extra 16GB its rational!

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Happy

You missed...

The nexus 7 is also cheaper uses a standard USB charger and (and this seems to have been missed) Comes with built in GPS [you only get gps on the cellular version of the ipad mini] (not to mention you can cache google maps for offline and they work :) (sorry, couldn't resist)

As for apps, I've yet to find anything that doesn't do what I want (its not like the old days). I don't like facebook, but the app is just as slow on the nexus as on your IOS device. The twitter apps is equally crap, but fortunately there are plenty of other apps to tweet away. Dropbox, Amazon cloud player, firefox, chrome, kindle they are all there. There are loads of games and office apps. Yes, the store can still be a bit of a pain to find the apps, but overall In fact, I probably have more choice rather than less to choose from. I'm certainly not restricted to a single web browser or source for music because the ipolice say that's how it is.

I know the nexus 7 isn't for everybody, but somehow I don't think asus and google are going to be loosing sleep tonight.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: You missed...

Simple fact is, the only thing the nexus is good for is watching movies and for that you can get a cheeper better speced chinese noname tablet. As for having more than one browser, that's desperation showing but then you revealed yourself to be a troll by the claim that you are limited to a single source of music.

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@A/C 22:15

Thank you for your detailed and in-depth review. You've obviously spent a lot of time with an N7.

Although I think you might have missed a couple of things. In my comparatively short time with my N7 16g (couple of months) I have used it for the following:

Teamviewer/VNC/RDP remote control

FTP server for router firmware updates

FTP client

Email (both Gmail app, and other IMAP/POP based systems using K9)

Google calender

Catching up on the MotoGP via iPlayer (sideloaded flash whilst waiting for BBC to "sort their life out")

Much gamidge (okay, that's the missus - PvZ, All the angry birds, Bubble shoot, Draw Free, SongPop etc etc)

Beebroid BBC micro emulator - old scoolz! That's for me :-)

Radio when I'm in the bath via Absolute radio app

Showing semi-posted photographs to clients on the rather lovely screen (I do a sideline in photography)

It's been worth it's weight in gold when building PCs for referring to motherboard manuals when the original has been lost. No need to carry a laptop anymore.

Not to mention the old favourites of Skype (with video chat of course), facebook, twitter, and reading/writing drivel in the comments on El-Reg, with the swype keyboard.

Oh yes, I do have several browsers installed. Why? I've been known to do websites, so testing on other browsers is a good idea.

After all that, I've still got 10gig free, so I won't be rushing off to buy a 32gig when it comes out, although I might buy one for the missus.

Oh, and so far I haven't spent a penny on apps.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: @A/C 22:15

Just because you choose to use a crap tool dosn't make that tool good. It just shows an error of judgment.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Nexus 7

I've got a Nexus 7, but it's not ideal if you want to show friends your 4:3 aspect ratio photographs. Perhaps having a micro 4/3rds system camera makes me non-rational? Well, until I can afford an M9 it* will have to do. Of course, there are plenty of other useful things I can do with my Nexus, but the aspect ratio bugs me. 4:3 is nice for web pages too. Don't mention widescreen video on tablets - I'm not going to hold oneclose enough to fill my field of vision, so I stick to watching them with a projector.

*by it, I mean the camera. The Nexus 7 would make more sense with a Leica.

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Stop

"And yes, I own a Nexus 7."

No, you don't. Because what you are saying is just idiotic trolling.

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Anonymous Coward

2009 is calling

They want their Android myths back.

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Re: 2009 is calling

Can't figure out if that's aimed at the Android haters or lovers. Makes sense if aimed at the haters.

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Facepalm

"The Nexus also is... thicker"

WTF? That's massively mooted by the Mini being wider. Over a cm wider means it takes more pocket space than something a couple of mm thicker. And it's pocket space that counts: If I'm just sitting at home with something on my lap, I'll but a full-size device.

"has a smaller screen"

At higher resolution.

"and hardly any apps apart from [millions of] scaled-up smartphone apps!

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Anonymous Coward

Re: @A/C 22:15

So you haven't used the N7 for much in the way of reading documents/magazines etc. then? How well do your photos fit on a wide screen format? Do you ever hold your N7 in portrait mode? Does it feel odd?

I'm no fan of Apple and I won't buy one of these because of the proprietary port and absence of an SD slot, not to mention the price, but they have got the right aspect ratio for the screen and I applaud them for sticking to it. Come on Samsung, give us an Android tablet with a 4:3 screen.

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Re: You missed...

I suspect you are only using your genitals to micturate. That "thing" can give pleasure too you know, and no, you won't go blind.

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Apple Share Price ....

... dropped 4% (so far).

Says it all.

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Re: Apple Share Price ....

I don't care at all, but just to inject some facts: It does this every time. There's hype, people are buying Apple stock, then the facts are out, people are selling and then it slowly goes up again. Check back in a week.

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Re: Apple Share Price ....

The old adage...

Buy on Rumour, Sell on News.

(And why am I still being told to be the first to comment when there's easily a dozen comments here already?)

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Re: Apple Share Price ....

The Share price has dropped around 15% since the iPhone 5 was announced ....

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Apple Share Price ....

That's really what the fanbois are scared of.

I've always assumed that the apparently dedicated Apple lovers are really there because they have large amounts of their pension fund (the US 410K plans) tied up in its overinflated share price.

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Nook HD?

http://www.reghardware.com/2012/09/26/barnes_and_noble_nook_hd_plus_hands_on_review/

The Nook HD 7" has a higher resolution than the Nexus 7, plus a memory card slot. But I guess it's not being mentioned in comparison to Apple's newest "oooh shiny!" product because it's not on shelves yet (but is available for pre-order with early Nov release)?

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Nook HD?

Can you pre-order in the UK?

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Meh

Re: Nook HD?

Shame it doesnt run iOS6.

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Anonymous Coward

I agree, the lack of a retina screen is crazy...

Apple should've put a retina screen in the iPad mini, and cancelled the iPad 2. Then they'd have retina across all tablets and phones, plus the iPod Touch in a streamlined product range. That would've been very compelling.

This release smacks of committee based thinking. Not encouraging.

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Re: I agree, the lack of a retina screen is crazy...

To have put a retina display on the iPad Mini they would have to have made it at least half an inch thick to house the battery .... and it would have got very hot.

Battery technology will need to improve before they can up the resolution on this device.

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Re: I agree, the lack of a retina screen is crazy...

Apple have always 'scaled up' their products. They know they can do an iPad Mini Retina, and that will come out next year. And repeat sell to the people who buy this model. They did the same with the iPhone; Provide a substandard product at the start and then add the features that you could get from other products AND make money while doing so because last years user wants to be this years user.

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Megaphone

Re: I agree, the lack of a retina screen is crazy...

The only reason why they won't do a retina version is because again... it's new teritory for Apple. If it doesnt sell as well, they can ditch it without too much expensive spared. Hardly substandard when the rest of the 7" market is only marignally better with the drawbacks of having Android installed, being generally larger and made of plastic.

By the way, only fanbois upgrade every year without justification. And they are in the minority big time now they're a consumer company.

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Re: I agree, the lack of a retina screen is crazy...

I'm actually suprised it even got the lightning connector, except that makes apple money.

Lets be clear.

A retina A6X 16/32/64GB Mini, about £30-40 more expensive than a kindle or Nexus is what everyone expected/wanted.

So wait for the Ipad Mini 3.

Which given the update to the Ipad (Retina) should be along in about 6 months time...

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