When Apple launches a new or updated product the company usually holds a press event where they announce the release in style. This was the case with the iPhone 6 and 6 Plus, but did you know that the company has quietly released new versions of the iPad Air and iPad mini? If you are looking for a new tablet, here is a brief overview of these latest Apple devices.
First up is the third version of Apple’s smaller iPad – the iPad mini 3. The immediately noticeable changes with this year’s device is the home button. It now has the metal ring right around it which enables the Touch ID feature so that you can unlock your device using your fingerprint.
Touch ID also enables users to pay for items using the Apple Pay feature that has just been released. Sadly, for the iPad mini 3, this is limited only to in-app and iTunes purchases as there is no NFC chip in the device to enable it to work with in-store terminals.
Aside from a slightly changed exterior and the extra Apple Pay related features, the device is more or less exactly the same as the iPad mini 2. It still boasts a 7.9 inch retina display and the same A7 processor found in the mini 2.
The major difference is that you can purchase the mini 3 with 64 GB or 128 GB of storage, which is not available for the mini 2. Unfortunately, the price of the device starts at USD 100 more (USD 399 for the 16 GB version) than the mini 2, which costs USD 299 for the 16 GB version. In other words you are paying USD 100 for the fingerprint unlock and semi-functional Apple Pay.
At this time, Apple has noted they will continue to sell the mini 2, which for many businesses will remain the better deal largely because it is less expensive yet offers exactly the same hardware and size.
As the name implies, the iPad Air 2 is the second version of the popular iPad Air which was introduced last year. As with the mini 3, the Air 2 has seen a slight change to the home button with the introduction of the Touch ID feature that allows users to unlock their devices using their fingerprint.
The new version also enables the Apple Pay feature so users can use their fingerprint to approve purchases. Sadly, there is no NFC chip in the device, so you won’t be able to use the device to make purchases at stores.
Beyond this, there are a number of interesting changes that many business users will find useful including:
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