FOLLOWING MONTHS of rumour and speculation, Apple announced the Ipad Mini at an event in California on Thursday in its bid to compete with the Google Nexus 7 and Amazon Kindle Fire HD.
However, with its lack of a Retina display and last generation dual-core A5X processor, can the Apple Ipad Mini persuade Christmas shoppers to hand over their cash?
For those who have been holding their breath for a smaller, more portable Ipad, the Ipad Mini isn't going to disappoint. At just 7.2mm thick and weighing 308g, the Ipad Mini makes its rivals look almost chubby in comparison and has taken the title of the smallest 7in tablet on the market despite offering more screen space than its competitors.
In terms of build quality, the Ipad Mini comes crafted from aluminium, which although prone to occasional scratches should ensure it withstands the odd drop now and then. The tablet also boasts a curved rear, which Apple claims makes it easy to use with one hand, a feature that will appeal to those not so keen on the heft of the Ipad 3.
For those who are looking for an Ipad Mini to match their Iphone, the tablet will be available in both black and white.
Although we weren't quite sure what to expect from Apple's announcement, we were disappointed to learn that the Ipad Mini won't feature Apple's trademark Retina display, instead opting for a 7.9in 1024x768 touchscreen with the same resolution found on the Ipad 2. Although we had no gripes with the quality of the Ipad 2's screen, it's worth noting that this is a lower screen resolution than that of its Nexus 7 rival.
We might not be won over by the Ipad Mini's screen resolution, but its expanse of screen real estate is impressive. Apple was quick to mock the Nexus 7 at its heavily hyped event on Thursday, talking up the fact the Ipad Mini's display is 35 percent larger than 7in tablets, offering up to 67 percent more space for web browsing thanks to Android's onscreen navigation keys and tabbed browsing feature. Given that web browsing is one of the most appealing factors of owning a tablet, this factor might just lure buyers away from rival tablets.