Archive for October, 2012


So, Apple has finally launched a smaller version of its best selling iPad, and it looks, from initial reviews I’ve read to be yet another high quality product.

But, was it really necessary for the mini to be made in the first place?

For a start, the pricing seems really extreme for a tablet with the spec of the mini, with the current 7 inch tabs, such as the Kindle Fire HD, Nexus 7 and Nook HD, all having higher screen resolutions and ppi figures, and equally good or better CPUs and similar storage capacity.

The base iPad mini is £269 for the 16GB Wifi only version , £70 dearer than the 16GB Wifi Nexus 7 @ £199. The Kindle Fire HD 16GB can be had for just £159, with the Nook HD coming in somewhere in between.

That £70 difference might not seem that much, but given that people are economising still, I do wonder if the price point could be a dealbreaker, especially if you follow the pricing structure up, where the mini overlaps the full size iPad quite deeply, and begs the question ‘Why buy a mini when you can get a full size one?’.

I personally have not had any hands on, but looking at the reviews and videos so far, I find myself answering the question ‘Does it offer anything compelling over the competition? (Including other iPads)’ with a ‘No’.

I don’t doubt that it will sell by the truckload, but I can’t help that its Apple thinking they’ve missed a trick to cash in and racing to play catch up when they saw the success of the Nexus 7.

It seems these days that Apple is just about the money, and as I’ve said before, I think that’s a shame.

So, I had some spare time today, and having downloaded the Windows 8 preview, I thought I’d have a crack at installing it.

Tbh the process of installation was if anything, easier than Windows 7, even taking me through a seamless wifi setup to get online, even before I’d got to the login screen.

I wasn’t over enamoured with using my Hotmail credentials to log in, but I’m going to see how it works on a domain (if the preview works with domains), so that may be a non issue. That said, I could have used other credentials, but the Hotmail ones seemed most logical.

What really made me wrinkle my nose though, is the new Metro UI. My initial impressions are that whilst it may be great for a tablet, it isn’t so good for a traditional PC. To be fair, I need to play with it some more, and I will, but the UI has changed so much, that I have a nagging doubt that I’ll buy into it as my next desktop OS of choice.

Assuming that Metro can be turned off, then I may yet be persuaded, but that is something I’ll need to report back on.

I understand that Microsoft want to rationalise the look and feel of the OS across platforms, but I do wonder if this is a bridge too far.