Many interesting points in this post and as an ardent iPad mini user I agree on almost all the points. Here are my pros and cons of the iPad mini (v/s the iPad).
iPad mini Pros
- Portability (includes light weight, smaller footprint, one handed use, etc.) - Increases the number of my use-cases for it and increases the time I spend on tablet significantly.
- Price - The main reason I bought an iPad mini instead of an iPad was that I could not justify the price of the iPad, since I did not have an actual need for it and at around $170 less I could write off the iPad mini as a trial expense. It also enabled me to go for the $100 more expensive 32GB iPad mini instead of the 16GB iPad (with Retina display).
iPad mini Cons
- Speed and performance - I almost always notice a small lag while playing graphics intensive games and when multiple tabs are open on Safari that I did not with the iPad (4th gen) .
- Retina display - If I was not pampered by my iPhone 5's Retina display, I would not be missing it on the iPad mini. Once you are exposed a better experience, the lack of Retina display on the iPad mini just sticks out like a sore thumb.
- Lack of accessories - Though iPad mini has enough accessories like external keyboards or protective cases, it still lags behind the iPad on the sheer selection available to choose from. This might be due to a couple of reasons; The smaller footprint of the iPad mini makes it hard to make keyboard cases that are usable. And iPad mini is a new entry - It is still a relative new entry in to the iPad lineup (iPad mini is less than a year old) compared to the iPad that is in its 4th generation as of today.
Hopefully some of these cons are addressed with a newer version of the iPad mini that is expected to be released this Fall. Either way iPad mini is an excellent mobile tablet that is worth all its price!