iPad mini How future-proof is the Mini 4?

Discussion in 'iPad' started by wesley8631, Sep 29, 2015.

  1. wesley8631 macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Sep 12, 2013
    #1
    Hello everyone

    I have almost made up my mind to buy the Mini4, mostly because of its feather-like weight and form factor, but i am still deliberating a little..

    (1) How future proof is the Mini 4? Can last me until 2018 or 2019, with an on-par or even better performance than the iPad 4 or mini 1 now? By last i refer to decent performance all round and still having the ability to play FPS without too much lag.

    (2) How's the battery life? Many websites test differently so i really need someone with real life experience to confirm if it's on par or just slightly worse off than the Air 2

    (3) Is the Mini 4 fine for gaming? I see many users here : http://forums.macrumors.com/threads/mini-4-framerate-drops-in-games.1920756/unread


    (4) If i already am planning to buy a 7 inch android tablet for entertainment on the go, should i get the Mini 4 or Air 2? Is it fine to have 2 tablets having the same form factor or would it be a waste?

    Thank you everyone.
     
  2. wesley8631 thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Sep 12, 2013
    #2
    To add on, i am bringing the iPad everyday to school for my studies. Hope you all can help me reach a choice, thank you!
     
  3. joeblow7777 macrumors 68040

    Joined:
    Sep 7, 2010
    #3
    (1) No offence, but I don't like questions about how future proof something is. There's no good way to answer it. There's always better hardware just around the corner, but no one can see the future. Only time will tell how well a device will hold up.

    (2) I'm currently on my first charge. 19% remaining after just over 10 hours of light to moderate use (web, email, Facebook, YouTube, a little Netflix). Auto brightness, and over 30 hours of standby.

    (3) I'm not a mobile gamer, so I can't address that.

    (4) I still have my nexus 7 just so I can keep up with what's going on in the land of Android. I no longer carry it with me though. Having two small tablets does seem a bit redundant to me.
     
  4. ZBoater macrumors G3

    ZBoater

    Joined:
    Jul 2, 2007
    Location:
    Sunny Florida
    #4
    1. Very
    2. Excellent. As advertised.
    3. Yes.
    4. It would be a waste.
     
  5. Silver Idaten macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jul 31, 2015
    Location:
    Stratford, CT
    #5
    The Air 2 and the Mini 4 will be beasts for years to come, thanks to 2 GB RAM. I think you're safe.

    I used to have an Android tablet and an Apple tablet, and I'd always use one or the other, so I stopped doing that. I think having just one is good enough for you.
     
  6. TB07-NJ macrumors 68020

    Joined:
    Jul 7, 2008
    Location:
    US of A
    #6
    It's as future proof as the Mini 1, Mini 2, Mini 3, iPhone , iPhone 2 iPhone 3 etc etc etc etc. I have friends still using the ipad 1 and to them it's future proof. Get my drift??? ;)
     
  7. mackie8 macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Nov 6, 2014
    #7
    i think having 2gb ram is good enough for 2-3yrs usage....
    i also have sony z3 tablet (travel) and ipad air 2 for home usage...and i want to get the new mini 4..... i maintain the android tablet because its easy to load multiple acct in clash of clans hahah..... i still prefer apple ecosystem....
     
  8. magbarn macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    Oct 25, 2008
    #8
    The iPad 1 (by virtue of it's paltry 256mb ram) and iPad 3 (subpar GPU) were the fastest depreciating and outdated iPads that Apple has released. The mini 4 has probably the staying power as iPad 4. It's got great RAM, but it's GPU performance will be a major bottleneck considering the A8x/A9 GPU blows it out of the water and the non-upgraded GPU (from the iPhone 6) has to push way more pixels than the iPhone 6. It's not a crappy iPad 1/3, but not as good as the iPad 2 - that iPad had LEGS for being future proof...
     
  9. rgarjr macrumors 603

    rgarjr

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    Apr 2, 2009
    Location:
    Southern Cal
    #9
    I'm wondering if they're going to add force touch with the upcoming ones.
     
  10. Tapper123 macrumors member

    Joined:
    Sep 16, 2015
    #10
    (1) How future proof is the Mini 4? Can last me until 2018 or 2019, with an on-par or even better performance than the iPad 4 or mini 1 now? By last i refer to decent performance all round and still having the ability to play FPS without too much lag.

    Depends on too many variables and what you expect. But generally speaking it's reasonable to expect 2 - 3 good years from a brand new Apple device.

    (2) How's the battery life? Many websites test differently so i really need someone with real life experience to confirm if it's on par or just slightly worse off than the Air 2


    I own an Air 2 and Mini 4. I find the Mini 4 battery life very good. About the same or better as Air 2. Basically Apple's battery life claims seem accurate.

    (3) Is the Mini 4 fine for gaming? I see many users here : http://forums.macrumors.com/threads/mini-4-framerate-drops-in-games.1920756/unread

    I started that thread, and since then I've tried a LOT more games. I should update it.

    Basically, the Mini 4 is really very good for games. BUT it's not quite as good as the Air 2. It all depends on the games. I would say 95% of games run just as well on the Mini 4 as they do on Air 2. The 5% that don't still are very playable, just not as smooth. A good example is Geometry Wars 3 Evolved. It seems to run constant 60fps on Air 2, but is probably doing ~30fps on the Mini 4. Other games may be improved by updates.

    (4) If i already am planning to buy a 7 inch android tablet for entertainment on the go, should i get the Mini 4 or Air 2? Is it fine to have 2 tablets having the same form factor or would it be a waste?

    If you're definitely getting the 7 inch Android (are you sure about that? The App Store is much better for gaming) and keeping the Apple in your room, then might as well get the Air 2. I do think it's a waste to have 2 tablets in the same form factor.

    I own the following devices:
    Apple: Air 2, Mini 4, Ipod Touch 5
    Android: Samsung Note 4, Nvidia Shield Portable
    M$: Surface Pro 3

    Each one is a different form factor, and I like them all for different reasons. I didn't intend to own both an Air 2 and Mini 4, but it worked out that way (the Air 2 64gb was only $250 thanks to a promotion I got lucky with, and I have always wanted a Mini with a good screen and the Mini 4 came along so...).
     
  11. spiderman0616 macrumors 68030

    spiderman0616

    Joined:
    Aug 1, 2010
    #11
    Nothing is future proof. Get what you need when you need it. It doesn't make sense to wait for the next thing that might be more future proof, because you'll never pull the trigger on anything--you'll just keep waiting.
     
  12. sracer macrumors 603

    sracer

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    Location:
    Land of Bongos and Beatniks
    #12
    No one can intelligently answer that question until you define what you mean by "future proof".
     
  13. ucfgrad93 macrumors P6

    ucfgrad93

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    Aug 17, 2007
    Location:
    Colorado
    #13
    The mini should be good for 2-3 years as others have said.
     
  14. newellj macrumors 601

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    Oct 15, 2014
    Location:
    Boston, MA, US
    #14
    Agree with these gentlemen. Tech hardware is inherently future-limited, but 2017 or 2018 feels safe. 2019 is probably a stretch...
     
  15. mtneer macrumors 68020

    mtneer

    Joined:
    Sep 15, 2012
    #15
    Future proof is very subjective. My mom is using her iPad 3 happily everyday. Many folks on this forum were complaining about the the "sluggishness" of iPad 3 from day 1. Your iPad Mini 4 will likely last until 2018 or 2019 in a physically functioning form. However, since it is one generation behind cutting edge technology out of the gate; how satisfied will you be with its performance on iOS 12 or 13 in that time frame is up to you.
     
  16. joeblow7777, Oct 1, 2015
    Last edited: Oct 1, 2015

    joeblow7777 macrumors 68040

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    Sep 7, 2010
    #16
    I wouldn't say that the Mini 4 is "one year" behind just because it has an A8. It's A8 is clocked faster than that of the iPhone 6/6+ and it is only the second iOS device to get 2 GB of RAM. Looking at it in comparison to other iPads, it's easily the second most advanced model to date, only behind the Air 2. It also compares well to competing Android tablets. According to Geekbench, it beats the brand new Galaxy Tab S2 in single core performance, and comes behind it in multicore just because the Galaxy has an Octa-core chip!
     
  17. Shirtin macrumors member

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    Sep 21, 2015
    #17
    How future proof is the iPad Mini 4?????????

    LESS than an iPad Air 2
     
  18. RickTaylor macrumors 6502a

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    Nov 9, 2013
    #18
    I'm still happily using my mini 2, so I imagine the mini 4 will last a while with its 2GB of ram and its faster processor. Yes the Air 2 has a bit of an advantage over the mini 4, but in my opinion it's small enough you should choose whichever form factor works best for you, especially if you're planning to be using the device for several years.
     
  19. MrGuder macrumors 68020

    Joined:
    Nov 30, 2012
    #19
    Phones iPads etc...are like cars drive them or buy they off the lot or store and there technology is already out of date. In fact Apple is working on a better iPhone iPad right now and soon your new buy is no longer top dog.

    It you keep on with this philosophy you'll never buy a device. Just get it and enjoy it life's too short.
     
  20. newellj macrumors 601

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    Oct 15, 2014
    Location:
    Boston, MA, US
    #20
    I have to agree with this. Unless you're a hard core gamer or spend all your time running benchmarks, I doubt there's going to be a real issue for a number of years. My wife has only recently begun to notice and comment on her iPad 2 running slowly.
     
  21. mtneer macrumors 68020

    mtneer

    Joined:
    Sep 15, 2012
    #21
    You're right - The A8 is plenty enough today. I was thinking ahead to 2018/ 2019 like the OP wanted, where the difference between an A9 and A8 will manifest more significantly.
     
  22. joeblow7777 macrumors 68040

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    Sep 7, 2010
    #22
    But I think that mobile devices are reaching the point that desktops reached years ago. The point where hardware is getting so overpowered for most people's usage that one device having a year older chip than another doesn't really matter. I know plenty of people using 5+ year old laptops. Tablets and phones keep getting more powerful, but are still primarily used for things like web surfing and Netflix.
     
  23. BiteMe! macrumors newbie

    BiteMe!

    Joined:
    Sep 27, 2015
    #23
    If you are already getting a 7 inch android tablet, maybe get a air2 instead of a mini?
    Also resale value of Apple producs is fairly high, therefore updating them turns out less costly.
    My 2C.
     
  24. wesley8631 thread starter macrumors newbie

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    Sep 12, 2013
    #24
    Hello thanks to everyone for the repliez. Futureproof for me refers to a device still fine for gaming, productivity and will not have major issues With lag or battery life after 2-3 yrs
     
  25. PBMB macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Mar 19, 2015
    #25
    In that sense you will have no problem with the new mini. I bought one recently and I see that it is a very nice little machine. Using it is a pleasure, I did not expect that level of ease of use. Regarding battery life, I have yet to thoroughly use it (I have it for only a few days now) but I did the following test. I left the display brightness to automatic and I used it in very dim light, almost dark, to see what is the maximum you can get. The brightness dropped really low and after 40 minutes of light use (25 min of App Store, web browsing and fooling around with settings, and 15 min of YouTube videos) the battery was still at 100%! This confirms that the display eats a large part of the charge pie, despite its small size. But it is an impressive little display, very crisp with vibrant colors. Under normal lighting conditions in a room, charge will drop much faster, like 1% every 5-10 minutes.
     

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