Apple in March 2019 refreshed the iPad mini, introducing the fifth-generation version four years after the release of the iPad mini 4. Prior to the update, it wasn’t clear if Apple was going to keep the 7.9-inch tablet around, but it now has a solid place in the company’s iPad lineup.
The $399 iPad mini 5 is almost identical to the 10.5-inch iPad Air that was released alongside it, with the exception of screen size. The iPad mini is Apple’s smallest tablet with a 2048 x 1536 7.9-inch Retina display.
Compared to the prior iPad mini, the updated version has new display technology like True Tone for adjusting the white balance to match the ambient lighting of the room and wide color support for more vivid, true-to-life colors. The display is 25 percent brighter than the display of the iPad mini 4.
There are no design changes compared to the previous iPad mini. There are thick bezels at the top and bottom of the iPad mini 5, along with slimmer side bezels. It’s 6.1mm thick, identical to the iPad Air, thinner than the iPad, and thicker than the iPad Pro.
The iPad mini comes in Silver, Space Gray, and Gold, and it continues to feature a Touch ID Home button for biometric authentication and a headphone jack. It also continues to charge via Lightning, unlike the new iPad Pro models that use USB-C.
Inside, the iPad mini 5 is equipped with an A12 Bionic chip, which is Apple’s latest-generation A-series chip used in the iPhone. Compared to the previous-generation iPad mini, it’s 3x faster with 9x faster graphics. It features the same all-day battery life as other iPads, lasting up to 10 hours depending on task.
New to the iPad mini is Apple Pencil support, and the tablet is compatible with Apple’s first-generation Apple Pencil. Unlike the iPad Air, it does not have a Smart Connector and matching Smart Keyboard.
The iPad mini 5 uses an f/2.4 8-megapixel camera that’s similar to the camera used in the previous model, with no rear flash and 1080p video recording. While the rear camera is largely the same and lacking compared to Pro models, the 7-megapixel front-facing camera is an improvement.
Like the iPad Air, the iPad mini features two speakers for stereo sound, dual microphones, Bluetooth 5.0, WiFi 802.11ac, Gigabit class LTE on cellular models, and eSIM technology.
The fifth-generation iPad mini can be likened to an iPad Air in a smaller, more portable package. The iPad mini is Apple’s smallest, most compact iPad, but inside, it’s an iPad Air.
Design wise, the iPad mini 5 is identical to the iPad mini 4, featuring a body with a tapered design, rounded corners, thick bezels at the top and bottom of the device, and thinner side bezels.
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