From its sizable forehead and chin (complete with physical home button and Touch ID sensor) to its headphone jack and Lightning connector, the new i Pad mini looks exactly like the old one.
This isn't an issue unique to the mini; the new Air looks just like the 10.5-inch Pro.
Apple's no-frills, 10-inch i Pad costs $70 less than the mini, and the arguably superior new i Pad Air costs only $100 more than the mini.
If I'm the kind of person who hasn't upgraded my tablet in awhile or if I'm new to i Pads in general, either of those options seem like more choices.
There will always be reasons to keep the mini around: As you read this, it's being used in point-of-sale kiosks and in airplane cockpits and on Chili's dining room tables. For you and me, though, and for most actual users, I suspect this year's mini will come off more as a capable curiosity than a must-own tablet.
All products recommended by Engadget are selected by our editorial team, independent of our parent company. If you buy something through one of these links, we may earn an affiliate commission.(Remember: The last new i Pad mini shared a brain with the i Phone 6.) I wouldn't want to use the mini for specific, high-performance tasks like editing 4K videos, but that has more to do with the tablet's 7.9-inch screen than how much power Apple managed to cram into this tiny body.And speaking of power, the mini is rated for the same 10 hours of use off a single charge as every other i Pad.I haven't run this thing through our official battery tests yet, but as usual, it seems like that forecast was actually a bit of a lowball.The i Pad mini also finally plays nice with the first-generation Apple Pencil, making it the smallest device in the company's lineup to do so.None of this is meant to suggest the mini is a bad device, because it isn't.I'd argue it's perhaps the best small tablet out there right now.I've always been fond of Apple's i Pad mini; I bought the first one as a Mother's Day gift, and the i Pad mini 4 was one of the first big reviews I ever wrote for Engadget.Unfortunately, Apple hasn't shown its smallest tablet nearly as much affection: As I write this, it's been more than since the company gave the mini a refresh.Still, I can't help but feel a little disappointed that Apple didn't see fit to revise the mini's design after a more than three-year hiatus. That's not to say there aren't any noticeable changes here though.For instance, the 7.9-inch display up front runs at the same resolution as older minis, but colors are much more vibrant here, and the addition of Apple's True Tone technology means they look more accurate under different kinds of light.