iPad mini For Dummies
Your iPad mini may be small, but it packs a big punch. In this full-color guide, you'll unlock all of its incredible capabilities - and have a blast while you're at it!
iPad mini For Dummies
Unveiling the iPad mini
In This Chapter
Looking at the big picture
Touring the outside of the iPad mini
Checking out the iPad mini's apps
Congratulations! You've selected one of the most incredible handheld devices we've ever seen. Of course, the iPad mini is a combination of a killer audio and video iPod, an e-book reader, a powerful Internet communications device, a superb handheld gaming device, a still and video camera, and a platform for over 1.2 million apps at the time this was written - and probably a lot more by the time you read this.
Apple has produced three iPad mini models so far: The original iPad mini (Fall 2012), the iPad mini with Retina display (Fall 2013), and the iPad mini 3 (Fall 2014). If a distinction between models is necessary, we refer to them as iPad mini 1, 2, and 3.
In this chapter, we offer a gentle introduction to all the pieces that make up your iPad, plus overviews of its revolutionary hardware and software features.
Exploring the iPad's Big Picture
The iPad has many best-of-class features, but perhaps its most notable feature is its lack of a physical keyboard or stylus. Instead, it has a super-high-resolution touchscreen that you operate using a pointing device you're already intimately familiar with: your finger.
And what a display it is. Every iPad mini ever built has a beautiful screen, but the iPad mini 2 and 3 sport Apple's exclusive high-definition Retina display, which is easily the most beautiful screen we've ever seen on a tablet.
Other things we love include the iPad mini's plethora of built-in sensors. It has an accelerometer to detect when you rotate the device from portrait to landscape mode - and instantly adjust what's on the display accordingly.
The screen rotates - that is, unless the screen orientation lock is engaged. We tell you more about this feature shortly.
A light sensor adjusts the display's brightness in response to the current ambient lighting conditions.
In addition to the aforementioned sensors, iPad minis have a three-axis gyro sensor that works with the accelerometer and built-in compass.
The latest model, the iPad mini 3, is the first iPad mini to include Apple's Touch ID sensor, which lets you unlock your iPad with your fingerprint.
Last, but definitely not least, all iPad minis come with Siri, a voice-controlled personal assistant happy to do almost anything you ask (as long as your iPad is running iOS 6 or later).
In the following sections, we're not just marveling about the wonderful screen and sensors. Now it's time to take a brief look at the rest of the iPad mini's features, broken down by product category.
The iPad mini as an iPod
We agree with the late Steve Jobs on this one: The iPad is magical - and without a doubt the best iPod Apple has ever produced. You can enjoy all your existing iPod content - music, audiobooks, audio and video podcasts, iTunes U courses, music videos, television shows, and movies - on the gorgeous color display found on every iPad ever made (even the oldest iPads have gorgeous color displays).
Here's the bottom line: If you can get the content - be it video, audio, or whatever - into iTunes on your Mac or PC, you can synchronize it and watch or listen to it on your iPad. And, of course, you can always buy or rent content on your iPad in the iTunes Store.
Chapter 3 is all about syncing (transferring media from your computer to your iPad), but for now, just know that some video content may need to be converted to an iPad-compatible format, with the proper resolution, frame rate, bit rate, and file format to play on your iPad. If you try to sync an incompatible video file, iTunes alerts you that an issue exists.
If you get an error message about an incompatible video file, select the file in iTunes and choo