I have been using iPads ever since the first generation. I bought the first generation iPad, skipped the iPad 2, then bought an iPad 3 and sold the original one on Craigslist.

Recently, Apple released the iPad Air and the iPad Mini w/ Retina display.

Now, the iPad Air is nice and all, but honestly, I don’t see any compelling reason to get one if you already have an iPad 3. Sure, it is a little thinner, but seriously, it isn’t as if the iPad is that thick to begin with.

I did, however, pick up an iPad Mini w/ Retina.

Why would I bother getting a smaller iPad when I already had a full-size one?

The question is, why do you get an iPad?

I get an iPad for ease of portability. I don’t get it in order to be a full work machine. It obviously isn’t and I have a laptop for that.

What do I do with an iPad? Well, I read sometimes. I keep up with stuff online. And I sometimes use it for note taking while in meetings or conferences. Which brings me to…

Typing. I’m a big guy and I have big hands, but even I find the size of a large iPad to be a little unwieldy. I can type on it while the iPad is laid flat on the table, but if I try to thumb-type on it, I find the extra size of the full iPad to be a little heavy. With the iPad Mini, I can easily thumb type. The device is light. In fact, it is small enough to palm it and still grip both sides.

So, for me personally, I find the size of the Mini to be more convenient. I can type easier on it. It is easier to carry around. It can fit into bags easily.

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That’s about the only difference. In terms of the guts of the devices, there is no difference. It is really solely a matter of personal preference in terms of the size.

Use For The Two iPads

This is a matter of opinion, but if I were to give you advice on which iPad might suit you better, it could come down to what you intend to do with it.

The full size iPad with the larger screen might be better for:

  • Image editing
  • Movie editing
  • Games where you want a more immersive effect

For anything else, I think the Mini is just fine. In fact, the Mini can do the stuff above, too. It would be the difference between a laptop with a 15-inch screen and a 17-inch screen. Oh, and if you plan to Airplay things to your TV anyway, then it truly makes no difference.

Oh, and lastly, the Mini’s are priced about $100 cheaper overall than their larger brethren. So, that might make a difference for you as well.