The iPad mini has been Apple’s most underrated product in its current lineup. Neither has this mini tablet seen a price drop nor has Apple updated the device to make it modern like other iPads. And this is why I have a sneaky feeling that Apple might launch a new iPad mini at its fall event in September along with the new iPhones.
I am more excited about the next-generation iPad mini over any other upcoming Apple products due for release this year. You might wonder why. The reason for my excitement is that there isn’t any premium device on the market now that is a cross between a smartphone and a tablet. The remodeling of the iPad mini means consumers could have a new device to look forward to with a unique form factor that is apt for playing games, taking notes, or zoom calls without carrying the baggage of a legacy handheld console or the iPad we know as of today.
Sure, the iPad mini does all the above things I have mentioned but it has started to look dated and those chunky bezels are really annoying. In recent months Apple changed the look of the iPhone and the iPad Pro, and it’s time to bring that design language to the iPad Mini— the flat design and the thin bezels along with a side-mounted fingerprint scanner in place of the home button.
The biggest impact of such a device has to be in gaming. Some games like Monument Valley+ look better on the iPhone 12’s 6.1-inch screen, while NBA 2K21 and Oceanhorn 2: Knights feel more intuitive on the iPad Air 4. There is no performance difference between the iPhone 12 and iPad Air 4 as both devices are powered by the A14 processor, but since screen sizes are not the same, the experiences differ.
That is where the iPad mini comes in, almost a bridge device and one that becomes a base for Apple’s gaming ambitions, if it has any. Apple does not need to make another version of the Switch, but can certainly do with the form factor of the portable console with all the elements of the iPad. Let third-party vendors make fun gaming accessories.
The Nintendo Switch is successful because there is no other device like it yet, despite the PlayStation 5 and Xbox Series X hogging the limelight. If you scan the internet, you won’t find a single device that marries mobility and iPad-like functionality, including the support for stylus, in a compact form factor. The funny part is even Samsung does not offer a small-sized powerful tablet with the built-in S Pen functionality.
It is hard to believe that the industry has not shown enough faith in an iPad mini-like device and instead chose to focus squarely on “pro” level tablets lately. Maybe brands think the foldable phones will eventually replace small premium tablets like the iPad mini in the future. All I know is that the iPad mini still works great for people like me.
Anyway, the next version of the iPad mini, could be something to look forward to. And no one is as excited as I am about the prospects of the iPad mini because that form factor has the magical qualities of being a true gaming device as well as the ultimate note-taking digital pad.