Tablets Big and Small: Apple’s iPad

Tablet computers combine the best of portability and power into a single, easy-to-transport package. Although there are many choices to look at when buying a tablet, many consider Apple’s line of tablets — the iPad and the iPad mini — as the cream of the crop when it comes to style, power and usability. Running on Apple’s iOS platform and utilizing the App Store for applications for the device, iPads of all flavors have a lot going for them. The major disadvantage to the iPad line of products is their cost, which is higher than comparable tablets by other manufacturers.

The Original iPad

Now in its fourth generation, the iPad has provided users on the go with power almost equal to a laptop computer. Since 2010, Apple has dedicated a large part of their resources to the tablet market, developing the iPad along with their other flagship device, the iPhone. This dedication to the market has paid off, and according to Apple’s CEO Tim Cook, as of February of 2012 Apple has sold more than 55 million units across all generations.

What is it that makes the iPad so appealing? Users describe a number of features they like, but mostly it comes down to the iPad is well-designed, has a library of more than 275,000 native apps and is the ideal size for users on the go. The current model sports a 10-inch screen with better resolution than most computer monitors, a dual-core processor, 1GB of RAM and a full HD rear camera, among many other features. Combine this type of power with the iPad’s thin and light design — the newest model is less than a half-inch thick and weighs less than a pound-and-a-half — as well as its all-glass front and Apple has found a recipe for the bestselling tablet on the market today.

The iPad Mini

Apple recently introduced a smaller version of its popular 10-inch iPad, dubbed the iPad Mini. At 7 inches, Apple designed the iPad Mini to compete directly with the popular Android-based tablets released by Samsung and others. Thinner and lighter than the iPad — less than three-quarters of a pound and less than a third of an inch thick — it still has surprisingly robust internal components. With a dual-core processor, 512MB of RAM and a full HD rear camera, the iPad mini does not skimp on power despite its smaller size.