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iPad mini – Apple’s newest phablet?

The new 8.3-inch, smaller screen-bezelled, 5G-enabled iPad left many social media users questioning whether their next mobile device needs to make phone calls.



At the same event where Apple introduced the newest iPhones, it unveiled the new iPad mini — with a larger 8.3-inch Liquid Retina display. The device features the same A15 Bionic chip found in the latest iPhone 13 devices, seating the device comfortably between phone and tablet. 

After last night’s announcements, many people took to Twitter and Facebook questioning whether their next iPhone would need to, well, be a cell phone. The attractiveness of the large screen with a magnetically attachable stylus and 5G support makes this device ideal for users who have been craving an iPhone with a stylus.

New advanced cameras, Centre Stage, and support for Apple Pencil (2nd generation) enable new ways for users to capture photos and videos, communicate with others, and jot down their ideas when creativity strikes. 

The screen outputs 500 nits of brightness, with a P3 wide colour gamut, anti-reflective screen coating, True Tone, and full lamination. Images and video will be vibrant and come right up to the surface of the glass. This, combined with new landscape stereo speakers, enable an all-round great content experience.

The all-screen design is enabled by moving the Touch ID sensor to the top button of the iPad mini. Touch ID delivers the same ease of use and secure authentication users know — to unlock iPad mini, log in to apps, or use Apple Pay. 

The Centre Stage experience on the iPad Pro is now available on the iPad mini, so users can enjoy more engaging video calls. An updated Ultra Wide front camera with a new 12MP sensor and a much larger field of view enables Centre Stage, which automatically pans the camera to keep users in view as they move around. When others join in, the camera detects them too, and smoothly zooms out to include them in the conversation. This functionality works on FaceTime, Zoom, Blue Jeans, and Webex Meet.

The back camera now features a 12MP sensor with Focus Pixels and a larger aperture to capture sharp, vivid photos. The back camera also features a True Tone flash, suitable for capturing images in low light. With a new image signal processor in A15 Bionic, users will also see natural-looking photos with Smart HDR, which improves image quality by recovering details in shadows and highlights.

5G allows the iPad mini to reach peak speeds of up to 3.5Gbps in ideal conditions. Combined with continued support for Gigabit LTE and eSIM, the tablet offers flexibility when one needs to get connected. Wi-Fi 6 also ensures faster Wi-Fi connections when in crowded Wi-Fi zones.

iPad mini now features a USB-C port for up to 5Gbps data transfer, which is 10x faster than the previous generation and connects to a vast ecosystem of USB-C accessories, including cameras and external storage, as well as displays of up to 4K. USB-C enables workflows with high-bandwidth input and output for everyday users and professionals alike — ideal for a photographer connecting cameras when shooting on location, or a doctor conducting an ultrasound remotely.

A USB-C-connected ultrasound tool with iPad mini.

The new iPad mini will be available for pre-order starting at R8 999 from 17 September 2021. Visit here for more details. They come in two storage configurations: 64GB and 256GB. Users can choose from pink, starlight, purple, and space gray finishes.