The doubting is over. The iPad mini with a Retina Display is a reality and will be available before the holiday season really kicks in. The rumor that got the news right was actually the earliest rumor of them all. In February Patently Apple reported that a rumor stated that the iPad mini 2 would deliver a new level of Retina to 2048 x 1536 ppi resolution. That's exactly what Apple announced would be coming to market earlier today during their special event.
The other good news is that the older model iPad mini without a Retina display will start selling for $299 which is what some of Apple's Android competitors feared would happen – giving them advantages in cost controls.
But not all iPad mini rumors were right. In fact the Chinese blog "DoNews" should be viewed as a site not to be trusted going forward. They went out of their way to present a fake photo of an iPad mini in Gold with Touch ID capabilities that we, CNET, 9to5Mac, GIGAOM, Electronista and many others fell for including AppleInsider (using another source). While I can appreciate that some rumors will fly and others not, sources using "photoshopped" photos for the sake of clicks and momentary fame, go directly to the dog house, no questions asked.
The Brilliance of the iPad mini
Apple's iPad mini with Retina is bound to be a hit this holiday season. If you're asking the question "how do 3 million pixels fit into a 7.9 inches? Apple's answer is simple: Brilliantly.
To bring the Retina display to iPad mini, Apple had to find a way to pack every one of the 3.1 million pixels from the 9.7-inch iPad into a 7.9-inch display. Every pixel in a display has multiple signals telling it when to light up. And with a 2048 x 1536 resolution display, more pixels and more signals are placed closer together on the same plane, so signals can get crossed and image quality can suffer. To make sure everything on iPad mini looks crystal clear, Apple engineers elevated the pixels onto a different plane — separating them from the signals. In the end, the pixel density jumped to 326 pixels per inch — so dense the human eye can't distinguish individual pixels — making everything look incredibly detailed, vibrant, and razor sharp.
Apple's introduction of the iPad mini (second generation) with Retina was truly one of the brightest spots to be found in Apple's event today.
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Some of the Little Things Under the iPad mini's Hood
Yes, it's the Retina display that we'll notice front and center when we visit an Apple Store in the coming weeks to see the new iPad mini. Yet there are a few changes under the hood worth noting.
The iPad mini will sport a next generation FaceTime HD camera with improved backside illumination sensors featuring larger pixels for better low-light performance. The iSight camera with 5MP sensor and advanced optics, combined with iOS 7 and the image signal processing of A7, further improves still image and video capture on iPad bringing faster auto-focus, up to three times video zoom, five times still zoom, better dynamic range and automatic image and video stabilization.
The new iPad mini will also feature two antennas to support Multiple-In-Multiple-Out (MIMO) technology, bringing twice the Wi-Fi performance to iPad Air and iPad mini with Retina display at a blazingly fast data rate up to 300 Mbps. Cellular models of the iPad mini will also come with expanded LTE coverage to accommodate even more LTE networks worldwide, while continuing to deliver comprehensive support for other fast cellular technology around the world (DC-HSDPA, HSPA+), all in a single model.
For more on the new iPad mini, visit Apple's website.
October 22, 2013: New Apple Press releases:
- Apple Announces iPad Air—Dramatically Thinner, Lighter & More Powerful iPad
- Introducing the All New Mac Pro—The Most Radical Mac Ever
- MacBook Pro with Retina Display Updated with Latest Processors, Faster Graphics & Longer Battery Life
- OS X Mavericks Available Today Free from the Mac App Store (Note: There may be a delay in downloading OS X Mavericks outside the USA just as there is with iRadio.)
- Apple Introduces Next Generation iWork and iLife Apps for OS X and iOS