iPad Mini

Apple starts accepting pre-orders for new iPads

Apple’s Online Store went down for more than three hours earlier this morning as the Cupertino firm was gearing up to start accepting pre-orders for the new iPad Air 2 and iPad mini 3.

Lo and behold, Apple has now begun accepting pre-orders for the new tablets from customers in 29 countries and territories.

Additional global availability is due in the coming months. Interestingly enough, U.S. carrier AT&T started accepting pre-orders for the new tablets ahead of Apple. If you’re interested, head over to the Online Apple Store and make your reservation for one of the new iPad Air 2 or iPad mini 3 models.

Apple promised to start shipping these “later next week”.

Ten ways iPad Air 2 is better than iPad mini 3

Deciding between the original iPad mini and the iPad 4 was tedious due to a feature gap stemming from the notable hardware differences between the two. On the other hand, the choice between the iPad mini with Retina display (or the iPad mini 2, as it’s now called) was a no-brainer. Both came outfitted with essentially the same hardware— from the sensors to the A7/M7 chips to the cameras — so the decision came down to picking your preferred screen size.

That said, brain work is required to make an informed purchasing decision concerning the latest iPads. In case you missed it, Apple’s brought minor changes to the iPad mini 3 and the device got only like thirty seconds of stage time. Conversely, the iPad Air 2 is a much more substantial upgrade.

Here are ten iPad Air 2 features that the iPad mini 3 lacks which make the bigger model a better buy and arguably the right device to boost your tablet computing.

iOS 8 User Guide inadvertently confirms ‘iPad Air 2’ and ‘iPad mini 3’ with Touch ID and Burst mode

An inadvertent (or is it?) slip-up on Apple’s iBooks Store on Wednesday all but confirmed that tomorrow’s media event will in fact serve as a launchpad for a pair of iPad refreshes: a second-generation iPad Air and third-generation iPad mini. Furthermore, the images suggest Touch ID fingerprint scanning for both new tablets, in addition to Burst camera mode for the regular-size iPad.

These revelations were made public via iTunes screenshots for the iOS 8 iPad User Guide that can be downloaded to iBooks, as first discovered by the prolific Apple blogger Mark Gurman of 9to5Mac.

Apple could also launch new iPad mini and Smart Covers with new colors this Thursday

Rumors of a third-generation iPad mini arriving in 2015 (ahead of another rumored device, a 12.9-inch iPad Pro) rather than alongside the iPad Air 2 as previously suspected may have been greatly exaggerated after all, according to the fairly accurate Japanese blog MacOtakara [Google Translate] which today asserted that the Cupertino firm is in fact going to refresh the smaller device alongside its bigger sibling at this Thursday’s press conference.

The event should unsurprisingly see the addition of new colors to Apple’s Smart Cover case lineup, said to receive a tweaked design to accommodate the changes in the iPad’s form factor.

Apple CEO Tim Cook thinks slow down in iPad sales is just a ‘speed bump’

Apple CEO Tim Cook isn’t worried about the company’s tablet sales, even when industry analysts and consumers have been yammering on about it being a slowing market. Words from the Apple boss came in a brief interview with ReCode’s Walt Mossberg,   moments before a report went live detailing plans for a larger iPad out of Cupertino. 

Apple releases video of Yaoband’s use of iPad in musical experimentation

Following yesterday’s release of two new ‘Your Verse’ stories from Apple, the Cupertino giant has made an accompanying video to one of the stories available on its YouTube channel. The clip showcases Yaoband, a China-based music band that was featured in one of the two recent iPad stories, as they demonstrate ways in which Apple’s tablet is used in their music creation process…

FreedomPop adds LTE iPads to its no-contract free data, text and voice plans

FreedomPop, a startup backed by Skype founder Niklas Zennstrom which provides free or inexpensive Internet service on the Sprint network, today added the original iPad mini and other cellular-capable iPads to its stable of supported devices.

Apple’s LTE iPads, along with Samsung’s seven-inch Galaxy Tab 3, are now eligible for FreedomPop’s no-contract, free of charge voice, data and text plan.

It’s basically the same plan that the company originally offered to smartphone owners. Additional voice and data is available for a fee.

Regardless of whether you’re buying a little used iPad mini from FreedomPop or bringing your device over from another carrier, FreedomPop will treat you to gratis 500MB of LTE data, 200 voice minutes and 500 text messages.

But how does one take advantage of voice minutes and text messages on LTE iPads which only support data connections over cellular? Read on for the full reveal…

Are you ready for iPad mini Air?

When Apple last October introduced an update to its full-size iPad, nobody expected a name change but that’s exactly what transpired as the fifth-generation iPad became known as the iPad Air.

The rebranding conveys the device’s thin appearance and sleek design. With Fall fast approaching, Apple is about to refresh its tablet lineup.

A fresh report from China now hints at the possibility of a dramatically thinner appearance for the third-generation iPad mini, suggesting the device might even borrow the “Air” moniker from its bigger brother…

Wikipad introduces new ‘Gamevice’ controller for iPad mini

Wikipad, the company behind last year’s interesting-but-not-very-successful Android gaming tablet, has announced a new accessory for iOS devices today. It’s called the Gamevice, and it’s a decked out MFi game controller made specifically for the iPad mini.
The Gamevice was actually announced earlier this year for Android and Windows 8 tablets, but it appears to now be an iOS exclusive. As you can see it features a 2-piece cradle design, with the iPad mini in the middle, and slightly resembles a Wii U gamepad…

Best Buy price-matches Target’s $199 iPad mini deal

Right as the United States retailing giant Target announced a significant sale by taking a cool $100 off of the original iPad mini’s $299 price tag, rival Best Buy is mirroring the deal now in the run-up to Father’s Day.

That’s right, you can now pick up an entry-level Wi-Fi-only iPad mini with sixteen gigabytes of storage for just $199 versus Apple’s asking price of $299. LTE variants have been discount, too. The deal is available in select retail locations and does not extend to Best Buy’s online store…

Target offering 16GB Wi-Fi iPad mini for $199

Target is holding a significant sale right now in the run-up to Father’s Day, and is discounting a number of its products. Among the deals, the retailer is offering the 16GB Wi-Fi model of the first generation iPad mini for $199.

That’s a solid $100 off of the tablet’s original price tag, and even beats out the ‘Special Limited Time’ pricing offered in the refurbished section of Apple’s web store. We’ve got the full details on the short-term promotion below…

AT&T’s prepaid GoPhone service expands to tablets, including iPad 3 and iPad mini

AT&T’s prepaid wireless service for smartphones, marketed under the GoPhone moniker, now works with cellular-capable first-generation iPad mini and third-generation iPad with Retina display (also known as iPad 3).

The nation’s second-largest wireless operator said Friday that owners of a limited number of  select tablet models can now purchase cellular data on a month-to-month basis, for the first time…