Apple's iPad Mini reveals value of Kindle Fire HD and Google Nexus
Updated March 23, 2013
SEE UPDATED CHART INSTEAD (this one now outdated).
Updated March 13, 2013 to use new pricing on Kindle Fire 8.9 in the U.S.
Photo credit: USA Today - Oct 23 post updated Nov. 2 to reflect the Apple change to their specs sheet to indicate more than one speaker even if on the same side.
While this is a Kindle-focused blog, and some in my mailbag want it to stay that way, it's about a Kindle world, and many have been wondering what Apple had up its sleeve with the smaller version of the iPad.
They started out by upsetting iPad 3 owners who just bought their new iPads only 7 months ago or less. That was called "The New iPad" and this would then be "The newer iPad"? They did call it "4th Generation" though and it sounds good at the same price.
NOTE that after Amazon showed their chart of Kindle Fire HD vs Apple iPad 3, Apple has added dual-band WiFi and other features to their iPad4.
BUT back to the iPad mini, which some feared would "kill" the Kindle Fire. It in fact boosted it "for the rest of us" (an old Apple marketing tool)
Tweeting the iPad mini part of the event (at @kindleworld) - Added bolding:
I tweeted while reading live blogs today and here are the brief notes I tweeted, in chron order, earliest first, with a couple of TYPOS corrected.
- iPad mini...7.2mm pencil-thick..68 lb, b/w models...1024x768 hmmm
- iPad mini...at 7.9" w/1024x768 ...they're going for low-ball pricing [no]...35% more display area than 7" Android...No onscreen controls, more space
- iPad mini...equal or better than iPad2..dual-core A5 processer, FaceTime HD camera, 5MB camera w/1080p record'g...LTE wireless, dualband WiFi
- iPad mini...10 hrs battery life...SmartCover has no metal hinge...headphones on top...Cvr in 5 colors...16GB $329 with WiFi
- iPad Mini...32GB $429, 64GB $519, $130 add'l each, for LTE cellular connectivity. WiFi ships Nov 2, Cellular 2 wks later. Lots of countries.
- iPad mini ... Almost 8-inches with only 1028x768 and w/16 GB at $329? This was expected though. Surprised at the resolution for that size.
A couple of Twitter conversations on this
David Pogue (@Pogue) tweeted
"Price for new iPad Mini: $330 (for 16gb model). Kindle Fire is allowed to live"
[to which I replied]
"...Not to mention Kindle Fire at 1280x800 vs 1024x768 on bigger 8" & w/ dual stereo spkrs + hdmi-out for $200. It'll thrive: my guess."
Larry Magid (@larrymagid) tweeted:
"I've never seen Apple make such a big deal about how better it is than competition. Makes me think they're really worried about Android" [and he asked]
"Given a choice between 9.7 and 7.9 inch iPad I'd opt for the 7.9 inch mini. What about you?"
My reply (going a bit off the precise topic)
"...I'd actually go for full 10" for magazines/PDFs and a 7" for portability, easy carry use. The almost-8" size? Odd."
But the size is targeted at optimal display of tablet apps -- and Apple claims that lack of need for some onscreen controls gives users more display space.
Note that Apple said it was equal to or better than the iPad2 -- (and today they introduced the iPad 4, twice as fast, twice the features of the iPad 3, same price: $499 for 16GB).
QUICK table of differences in features for price, with Google Nexus and IPad mini
|Kindle Fire HD 7" |
1280 x 800 resolution
Dual stereo speakers
w/ Dolby Plus
HDMI-Out to HDTV
Front-facing camera, 1.2MP
Dual core TI OMAP 4470 w/ Imagination PowerVR 3D graphics core
Dual band, 2 antenna WiFi
Battery-life claim: 11 hrs
Customized Android, does Amazon store w/setting that allows apps from other app stores
50,000 apps + access to getjar.com, 1mobile.com, etc for google-play apps
$10 more for a charger if you need one Older Kindle & smart phone chargers work
$15 add'l: no lockscreen ad
$249 for 32GB model
($269 for 16GB 8.9" 1920x1200 resolution, 254 ppi)
($299 for 32GB 8.9" 1920x1200 resolution, 254 ppi)
|Google Nexus 7"|
1280 x 800 resolution
8GB storage (soon 16GB)
One mono speaker *
No HDMI-out to HDTV
Front-facing camera < 1 MP
Quad core Tegra 3
Battery-life claim: 9-10 hrs
Pure Android and can do direct Google Play store
$249 for 32GB model soon
|Apple iPad mini 7.9 inch/|
1024 x 768 resolution
512MB? Per A5 chip specs. TBC.
Built-in speakers *
Nov. 2, Apple finally added an 's' to 'speaker' *
No HDMI out to HDTV **
Front (HD) & Back (to 1080p) cameras
Battery-life claim: 10 hrs
275,000 heavily-curated tablet-optimized apps
(Can also run small iPhone apps - any w/ Retina resources can scale w/o pixelating. 450,000 add'l.)
23% & 53% lighter than iPad.
Lighter than the other tablets.
$429 for 32GB model
* iPad mini: See Speaker discussion - to be changed when Apple changes its iPad mini specs page.
Update - On Nov. 2, Apple finally updated their iPad-Mini specs page to show "Built-in speakers" instead of "Built-in speaker" -- something I requested they do since Specs pages are official reference pages. The speaker grilles are about an inch or two apart, on one short side, and maybe that's why they don't mention 'stereo' after the correction. The whole thing has been bizarre. This would be the first iPad w/ two speakers but they can do nothing for movies or videos viewed the usual way, as they are close together on just one side.
Google Nexus: See Nexus owner forum thread about the speaker.
** Those w/ Apple TV's can do AirPlay Mirroring to them.
Table updated Oct 31
For initial comparison article, I haven't included the Barnes & Noble Nook Tablet HD,
which has higher display resolution - but it has no cameras, not even one for Skype (important for family & friends who like to communicate via video chat), and B&N will not allow owners to enable installation of apps from non-B&N sources. I'll do an additional table later though, which will include them.
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