All iPads For the parents: mini or 4?

Discussion in 'iPad' started by TrackZ, Dec 22, 2012.

  1. TrackZ macrumors member

    Apr 16, 2010
    Been debating this with my wife for a bit now. Gift for both of our parents. Would usher them ideally into the postpc era. They have iPhones now. Have used pcs but are totally computer illiterate. I don't think they need pcs any more. The ipad would Become their main computer. Maybe by next Christmas they used it so much we buy them a second so each person has their own like we.

    I'm immediately drawn to the full size ipad with it intending to be their main computing device. The mini I think works better as a compliment to having a computer.

    Any additional thoughts on the matter?
  2. saberahul macrumors 68040

    Nov 6, 2008
    I agree with your thoughts. Full is likely better. Plus, the bigger screen with retina is easier on the eyes.
  3. overanalyzer macrumors 6502a

    Sep 7, 2007
    Boston, MA USA
    I agree with both of you, full size is probably the better choice. I think the best argument for the Mini in a case like this is better portability to always have it with you, but since they already have iPhones, I don't think that's a concern.
  4. AppleChampagne macrumors member

    Sep 29, 2012
    Had exactly the same thoughts, in the end plumped for a iPad 4. Just felt the wow factor of the retina screen would be something that they would enjoy;)
  5. SnowLeopard OSX macrumors 6502a

    SnowLeopard OSX

    Dec 5, 2012
    Go for the iPad 4th gen.
  6. wrkactjob macrumors 65816


    Feb 29, 2008
    Took my Mum (70) to an apple store to make the same choice, she went for the mini. Her eye site isn't perfect though is when she wears glasses. She just found the portability and light weight of the mini was far more suited to her needs.

    Up till that point my wife and I didn't know which she would prefer, so no surprise but she will get what she wants.

    I would advise letting your parents know your idea and asking them to test n try at a store.

    At no point did my Mum say "wow the Retina screen is amazing!" was more a case of "oh this one is much bigger and not so easy to carry around"

    It's a difficult choice to make on someone else's behalf, look how divided this forum is on the iPad/mini split.

    Remember the iPad isn't designed to replace a computer rather to sit between the iPhone and main computer.
  7. TJ61 macrumors 6502a

    Nov 16, 2011
    Go with your gut, save your receipt.

  8. 1rottenapple macrumors 68000

    Apr 21, 2004
    Ipad mini! I was am ipad earlier adopted in April 2010. It's heavy! Lol IMHO. But the mini has made computers relegated to 1-2 per wk use for me!

    The mini goes with me to work, to the airport, to the couch to the bed.

    Your parents probably love reading the news and the mini is life holding a paper back book. I read a ton of news and the mini is perfect for that!
  9. bigboar macrumors 6502

    Oct 26, 2012
    splurge and get them the 4! Their eyes will thank you for it!!!!
  10. apple_iBoy macrumors 6502a

    Oct 28, 2003
    Philadelphia, PA
    I originally was planning on getting my mom an iPad mini for Christmas. Unfortunately I came up with the idea a little too late and couldn't find the model I wanted.

    I limited my search to WiFi only models. My folks live in the middle of nowhere with nothing but orchards for miles around, and often can't get a cellular signal in their house.

    I was hoping to get the 16 GB, and would have taken the 32 GB. The 64 GB model is completely overkill for my mom. However, 64 GB was all I could find anywhere (and I searched for almost two solid days all throughout Philadelphia, central and north Jersey).

    I went ahead and bought the 64 GB model, which came in at $529 plus tax. I wasn't happy about that price for what is essentially an iPad 2 with a better form factor.

    Just tonight I found a 32 GB iPad 3 at a nearby Walmart. I rushed over and grabbed it for $499 and tax, and I got a free $30 iTunes card to go with it.

    I think it would have been nice for my mom to have something a little smaller and easier to hold, but her eyes aren't top-notch and I think ultimately the nicer screen on the iPad 3 makes it the better choice.
  11. ThatsMeRight macrumors 68020

    Sep 12, 2009
    Both are great, but I'd probably settle for an iPad mini. It is much lighter, much thinner and much easier to hold.

    Also, I have found that most older persons can't or barely see the difference between a Retina display and a lower pixel dense display. To put it this way: I know people who've got both an iPad mini and iPhone 4(S) and they find the iPad mini to be just as sharp as the iPhone 4 (and 4S and 5).

    An iPad mini is also much lighter: a little over 300 grams compared to the iPad 4's 650 grams. Also, if your mom (and perhaps dad) reads a lot, an iPad mini is probably the better choice because - well - it is smaller so more 'book'-like. And thanks to iBooks, you can just make characters and letters bigger so it's never too small.

    I'd probably settle with a $429 32 GB iPad mini versus a $499 16 GB iPad 4. Apps are becoming bigger and bigger.

    There are only two real differences between the iPad mini and iPad 4: the display (higher resolution) and the chip (A6X vs A5).

    As I said, most older people do not see the difference between a 'Retina display' and the older, lower pixel dense displays. Graphically, the iPad 4 is basically just as powerful as an iPad mini (the A6X' GPU is four times as powerful but it also needs to push four times as many pixels, balancing things out).

    So, what is the onliest thing they might really notice over an iPad mini? The CPU. It's twice as fast. On the other hand, the A5 chip isn't slow. The iPad mini's got the same CPU as the iPad 3!

    The question is: do you really want to pay an additional $170 for a Retina display they might not 'notice' and a faster CPU? And than let's not forget about the fact that you're stuck at 16 GB (which is something like 14 GB in reality, because the OS takes up space too), or that an iPad 4 weighs more than double as much.

    It's up to you.
  12. Piccio macrumors member

    Dec 10, 2012
    The eyes.

    We always understimate how important is for parents to not stress the eyes.

    They can resize the fonts but then the difference of resolution will be even more clear. And a Retina is perfect for that.

    Go for iPad 4.
    Mini is a nice product (even if it's born "old") , is light and better looking but mostly oriented to a younger market.
  13. AmazonMan macrumors newbie

    Nov 27, 2012
    get both

    if you have an apple store by you, get them both and let them try them. return policy is great for the 15 days
  14. Clix Pix macrumors demi-goddess

    Clix Pix

    Oct 9, 2005
    8 miles from the Apple Store at Tysons (VA)
    Weighing in here as a person who is on the other side of middle age steadily progressing towards old age.....

    I've had an iPad since Launch Day 2010 (first generation). I loved the thing dearly, carried it with me just about everywhere and used it at home and away from home. Ditto with the iPad 2. iPad 3 came into the household this past March, and like her predecessors, has been toted about whenever I've left home. Around home, although I would once in a while use her in bed, most of the time she has been used in situations where I could easily prop her on a stand and have her on a table or desk. Love the retina screen -- it's gorgeous, terrific for showing off my photographs, great for reading, etc., etc.....

    Along came the iPad Mini. I cruised over to the Apple store for a look the first week the WiFi-only models launched. It took all of two seconds of handling one to know that this was going to become a part of my household as soon as the models with cellular data became available. Now I've got my iPad Mini and let me just say, the iPad 3 has been sitting lonely and forlorn much of the time ever since. The smaller form factor makes a big difference and I find myself using the iPad Mini so much more than I did the larger one. I play with her in bed in the morning, in bed at night, all around the house, and of course she's an ideal companion to tuck into a purse -- no largish bag needed -- when leaving the house. I don't miss the retina screen at all because I am too busy enjoying being able to really use this device in bed or in situations where the larger iPad was just too big. A touch of the fingers zooms in the print if I need to enlarge something I'm reading, no biggie. Yes, I can discern the differences between the iPad 3 and its retina screen and my iPhone 5 with its retina screen and the new iPad Mini without a retina screen -- it doesn't bother me in the least. Sure, whenever an iPad Mini with retina screen becomes available, I'll be eager to have one but in the meantime I am more than happy with the current version.

    This is a situation in which probably it would be a good idea to allow the recipients an opportunity to decide which size and model of iPad best suits them and their needs. For me, in terms of really comfortable use in a variety of situations and great portability, the iPad Mini wins hands-down.
  15. Ladybug macrumors 68000


    Apr 13, 2006
    As an older adult, I agree with everything Clix Pix said previously. My iPad 3 is great but my Mini gets used more. I use Mercury browser to increase fonts for pages I visit regularly and zoom works just fine for everything else.

    Just keep your receipt for whatever you buy in case they want to exchange it.
  16. falconeight Guest


    Apr 6, 2010
    Chose wisely and don't listen to the save their eyes argument. It's about convenience.
  17. awb macrumors newbie

    Nov 17, 2012
    I think I have hit what is called old age and I love my iPad mini. I returned an iPad 3 after a week because it was too big. Yes, I can see the difference between the Retina display and non-Retina display but the size and weight of the mini make it a win for me.

    Ditto to all that Clix Pix said.

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