Apple’s iPad line-up is a confusing mess that needs streamlining. One suggestion is to reposition the iPad mini as an ebook reader.
In a November 30 article for Macworld, Dan Moren said he loves his iPad, but rarely want to read books on it: for one thing, it’s much heavier than my Kindle or Kobo readers—try holding an 11-inch iPad Pro over your head in bed without dropping it on your face. (You should probably wear safety goggles.)
“Most ebook readers are far more power efficient; they can be left for days if not weeks between charges,” Dan wrote. “They’re also significantly cheaper than iPads. And as nice as the iPad’s displays are, e-ink screens are far more pleasant to read in sunlight or at night in bed without disturbing anyone else (not to mention easier on the eyes).”
He says Apple thinks the iPad is good enough for ebook reading. Dan says if the company is starting to get serious about ebooks again, then figuring out how its hardware can be a better reading device is at the top of the list.
You can buy a 64GB iPad mini for US$499 and a 256GB model for $649. Those specs are too limiting for storing lots of photos or videos, but fine for holding lots of ebooks. And the iPad mini’s size is great for reading ebooks: 8.3-inch display and i0.65 pound for Wi-Fi only models and 0.66 pounds for Wi-Fi + Cellular models.
Currently, the iPad mini has a 8.3-inch diagonal LED display with 2266 x 1488 resolution. How about replacing this screen with an electronic/E ink display and drop the price to under $200.
(Electronic paper, also known as electronic ink or intelligent paper, is a display device that mimics the appearance of ordinary ink on paper. Unlike conventional flat panel displays that emit light, an electronic paper display reflects ambient light, like paper.)
Heck, Apple could even change the name from iPad mini to iPad Reader.