Thoughts on a Mini…

No, not the vroom-vroom from over the pond Mini (I’ve mentioned before how much I like driving mine, so it’s obviously out).

No, today I’m talking about this one. That’s right (for those of you that chose not to jump down the rabbit hole), I’m referring to the iPad Mini. As staunchly as he objected to a smaller iPad, I’m wondering if he was saying that because the technology wasn’t there, or if this is part of Tim Cook’s plan to maintain a competitive edge by diversifying (slightly) the available product options.

I missed the event yesterday – had some other things going on at work and hadn’t pencilled it onto my calendar to look for. Frankly, I wasn’t all that bothered by the speculation of a smaller iPad. Yes, I am still rocking a 1st generation. It’s not that I’m being a crotchety ol’ dinosaur (entirely). It’s the principle of how much tech does a normal person need? (Something MC would follow up with, “Yeah” then ask if I’m feeling okay since I just said that. Yes, I have a small tech problem. But I am also getting to a point where I realize that having multiples of some things just becomes overkill.) Wait… getting off track… Where was I?

Right… iPad Mini.

As a concept, I think it’s great, especially to compete with dedicated tablet readers like Nook or Android. As a multi-function device, it looks like a no-brainer option – as awesome as a regular iPad, only smaller (duh!). But I’m not really about to rush out and try to pick one up when they hit the streets. Go hit up the local Best Buy to play with one maybe (sweetie, I said “maybe”…) but I’m not about to buy one… yet.

And here is why I say “yet.” First, I would want to test drive one – I did that when iPads were first coming out, to see what the interface was like and play with the functionality of the apps. The cogs started turning, thinking of the possibilities – being able to write without pulling out a laptop (if a notepad wasn’t handy), media portability/experiences while traveling (load the sucker up with movies & TV shows and we’re golden for hours!)… and gaming.

Which is part of what takes me back to “yet.”

In case you missed it, almost eight months ago we had a son. While he still has a ways to go before he’s coordinated enough to do much with it by himself, there will likely come a point when we start filling up the iPad with learning games or videos to keep him occupied on long drives to the grandparents (or even longer drives to the great-grandparents). And if all three of us want to have access to things on the device at the same time?

At that point, I might consider a Mini. In the event that something irrevocably bad happens to one we currently have. At that point, I might consider a Mini.

I know there are a lot of Droid related enthusiasts, just as there are a lot of Amazon enthusiasts, and a whole slew of Apple enthusiasts that get crap from everyone else because of Apple’s “walled garden.” A lot of it comes down to platform manipulation, lock-in, and content management. Part of why I have switched over to Apple in the last five years (after vehemently being anti-Mac for most of the previous fifteen years), has been the ease with which they allow me to flip content across devices.

Damn train jumped the track again… the iPad mini.

Just by watching the presentation pieces, I’m impressed with the device. If I did not already have an iPad, I would definitely consider getting a Mini, which is probably part of the point. With a smaller device, and a smaller price point, the business mind is seeing this as an offering to win as many new people over as they can. Repeat business is great, but it’s the new blood that will help maintain market shares. But it’s a device I would have to play with for a little while, first, before buying. And I would have to have a justifiable need to add another device.

I will admit, the black one looks pretty sweet. And it should fit easier in a book sleeve for a smaller carry-on pack. And…

(grabs a d20… *shakes* [rattle of die rolling across the table]….) Whew… successful save vs. shiny… for now.

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