Today’s Apple event was front-loaded with news about the company’s desktop hardware and software, but the presentation did eventually move on to the topic everyone was waiting for: the new iPad models. In addition to the lighter, thinner full-sized iPad Air, Apple also quickly unveiled its incremental improvements for the iPad mini.
The largest improvement to the iPad Mini, as expected, is a new retina display with the larger resolution seen in full-sized iPad models. The tablet’s display remains at 7.9 inches but has a new 2048 x 1536 resolution at 326 ppi.
In addition to the screen improvement, the new iPad Mini has gotten a CPU upgrade to the 64-bit A7 processor, which was announced last month at Apple’s big iPhone 5S Event. Apple also promised the device will have Wi-Fi that two times better with its dual multiple-in-multiple-out (MIMI) antennas.
The new iPad mini will come in a new variety of colors, though not in as many as the iPhone 5C. Silver, white, “space” grey, and black are the choices consumers will have. The new iPad Mini will be available sometime “later in November.” The Wi-Fi version of the tablet will retail for $399, while the wireless-capable version will retail for $529.
As for the original iPad Mini, Apple isn’t retiring it just yet. The old iPad mini has gotten a price drop to just $299, a price that edges Apple’s lowest-priced tablet into the sub-$300 territory currently dominated by Amazon and other Android tablet manufacturers.