APC Australia


The best small-screen tablet out there, but other iPads offer superior value for money.


64GB, $827 | from apple.com/au

Sure, it’s now over a year old, but the iPad mini is ageing well. It’s effectivel­y a miniature version of the last-generation iPad Air, packing a six-core A15 Bionic processor and 4GB of RAM into a device with an 8.3in screen. It’s the perfect size for a small-screen iPad; big enough for web browsing, video streaming, gaming and even image-editing or note-taking apps, but small and light enough that you can hold it single-handed with ease. You’ll barely notice it inside a bag.

The screen itself is significan­tly better than anything you’ll find on the cheaper 8in tablets. Thanks to its 2,266 x 1,488 “Retina” resolution, it looks pin sharp. Peak brightness is actually just above the stated 500cd/m2, while contrast levels and colour reproducti­on are superb. The sound is also impressive by small tablet standards; watch movies and the score, effects and dialogue have a weight and stereo imaging you just won’t find on any rival.

That higher price also buys you luxuries such as a Touch ID sensor, Wi-Fi 6 connectivi­ty and a pair of 12MP cameras you might actually want to use to shoot photos or videos. Most importantl­y, it buys you performanc­e. While the A15 Bionic is clocked down from the identical chipset found in the iPhone 13 series and 4th generation iPad Air, this tablet’s benchmark results remain stellar in both 2D and 3D tests. You can comfortabl­y run more demanding apps and play the latest Apple Arcade games, while there’s plenty of headroom for titles such as Fortnite or Call of Duty: Mobile. Put the screen size aside, and there’s little that the baby iPad can’t tackle.

Nor does battery life suffer: we comfortabl­y exceeded ten hours in our video-rundown tests. Recharge, and you can get back up to 32 percent within half an hour.

There’s no doubt, then, that this is the best small-screen tablet you can buy today. However, it also starts at nearly $830 with Apple’s current pricing, making it four to five times more expensive than the competitio­n. Given its all-round excellence, it’s still good value, but if you’re happy with a larger tablet, other iPads are better value still.

 ?? ?? The screen is a real highlight.
The screen is a real highlight.

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