How Much Does an iPad Mini Cost?

The 7.9-inch tablet is popular with Apple fans

The original iPad Mini was introduced in late 2012. It was designed to compete with other 7-inch tablets on the market, and it provided Apple with an entry-level tablet for its lineup. It did extremely well, with some analysts wondering if it took too big a bite out of the full-sized iPad's sales. The Mini differentiates itself from other 7-inch tablets by coming in at 7.9 inches when measured diagonally. This gives it a sizable chunk of extra real estate. Similar to its bigger brother, the iPad Mini uses a 4:3 content ratio rather than the 16:9 ratio seen on many Android tablets. The 4:3 ratio is generally better when consuming content on websites and for apps, while the 16:9 ratio excels with video.

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Apple subsequently released four other versions of the iPad Mini over the years. The latest is the fifth-generation iPad Mini, which launched in March 2019. It currently starts at $399 for a 64 GB storage model. A 256 GB model currently starts at $549.

The iPad Mini 4 

Apple discontinued the iPad Mini 3 when the Mini 4 was released. It's essentially an iPad Air 2 with a smaller design, so while it's not quite as fast as the new iPad Pro models, it's still one of the fastest tablets on the market. It's also fully compatible with all of the newest features on the iPad, including split-view multitasking and picture-in-a-picture multitasking

The iPad Mini 4 was discontinued in March 2019 alongside the launch of the Mini 5. But, if you're interested in buying one, you can likely get it for a decent price used or refurbished.

The iPad Mini 3

Apple's third-generation iPad Mini was short-lived. For a time, Apple actually sold the iPad Mini 4 and the iPad Mini 2 without an iPad Mini 3 for sale. This is due to the changes between the iPad Mini 2 and the iPad Mini 3 or, more accurately, the lack thereof. The only major difference between the second-generation Mini and the third is the inclusion of the Touch ID fingerprint sensor technology. And while Touch ID can do a lot beyond just Apple Pay, it wasn't deemed an important enough feature by consumers to warrant a price jump.

The iPad Mini 2

The original iPad Mini was based on the iPad 2, which was Apple's second-generation iPad. The iPad Mini 2 didn't sell as many units, but it was quite a beast compared to the original. It was based on the iPad Air's chipset, which was Apple's fifth-generation iPad. That three years of technological difference packs a huge punch, with a processor that's more than three times the speed, with more RAM memory for applications, and the ability to use some of the new multitasking features.

Like other devices in the lineup, the iPad Mini 2 is no longer for sale on the Apple website. But, some can still occasionally be found on the refurbished section of the Apple store. iPads refurbished by Apple still have the same one-year warranty as a new unit. Buying refurbished is one of the best ways to get a cheaper iPad for this reason.

The Original iPad Mini

The original iPad Mini is no longer for sale and it's technically obsolete. Apple stopped supporting it with the release of iOS 10. Many people still find the original quite functional, though.

Would-be buyers can still find a used iPad Mini on person-to-person websites like eBay or Craigslist. But, due to its obsolete status, it's not worth the price.