New Apple iPad Mini 6 is Changing the Game, Again!

Robert Cerff / 01-12-2021 / Reviews

Since its launch in September 2021, the new iPad Mini 6 has quickly become one of the most popular tablets on the global market. Taking a closer look at its upgrades and redesigns, it is easy to see why there’s such a massive demand for this device.

Let’s see how the new iPad Mini stacks up against its larger counterparts.

Power in The Palm of Your Hands

In theory, tablets are meant to be easy to carry around and used while you’re on the move, but most iPad models have always struggled to achieve this due to their large size. Both the Pro and Air are just over 9 inches long and 7 inches wide, making it too clunky for hassle-free portability and quick access. The redesigned Mini measures 7.69 x 5.3 x 0.25 inches and has a screen size of 8.3 inches, which makes this the perfect fit.

Only the Best Updates

The iPad Mini 6 is a joy to use because it’s been updated with the latest features that were previously reserved for more higher-end ranges, such as:

●    Liquid Retina Display
●    Storage and RAM on par with the latest iPads on the market
●    Wi-Fi 6 compatibility with 5G support
●    Pixel count higher than the iPad Air 4
●    A system powered by the new A15 Bionic Chip
●    True Tone, P3 wide colour gamut, and
●    Peak brightness of 500 nits

Redesigned Display

The new Mini features an all-screen display, made possible thanks to the Home Touch ID button being scrapped. Instead, the Touch ID sensor is now located near the power button. Larger iPads also have this design, but due to their size, it has proved inconvenient, especially when you’re trying to hold the device while signing in. Thankfully, the new all-screen display of the Mini is perfect for its compact size.

The redesign also means that the new Mini now looks similar to the Air and Pro models with its flat-edged design and Liquid Retina display that stretches edge to edge.

USB-C for Better Compatibility

The Mini 6 has a USB-C port which Apple claims enables 10x faster data transfers than its predecessor. It allows for quicker charging times and better compatibility with other USB accessories, making it supremely more useful than other iPads without this port.

Apple Pencil 2 is Unlocked

Before the launch of the new Mini, the Apple Pencil 2 was exclusively reserved for the higher-end iPads, while more affordable options supported the original 2015 Apple Pencil. Although the original is of exceptional quality, charging it is somewhat inconvenient because it needs to be plugged into the Lightning port. The good news is, the new Mini is the first in the range to support the Apple Pencil 2, allowing for wirelessly charging by magnetically attaching to the side of the iPad.
If you're looking for a tablet that doesn’t compromise on power or convenience, then the iPad Mini 6 is for you!


Samsung Galaxy Z Flip 3 is the tech giant’s best foldable yet

Samsung’s flagship foldable smartphone, the Galaxy Z Flip 3, was unveiled last year and since its launch, it has been hailed as the tech giant’s best foldable yet.It boasts upgraded technology that is both practical and durable. It also hits the market at a lower price than its predecessor.Display and User ExperienceThe Flip 3 offers some of the best displays on the market today with a 6.7-inch FHD+ dynamic AMOLED 2X. It’s eye-catching with vivid, bright colours that look great both fully opened, and half folded. Although the screen is slightly narrow and tall, it offers a cinematic experience with plenty of space for content, whether it’s a movie, lengthy social media feed or a game. With a 120Hz refresh rate, you can expect a smooth user experience no matter how many apps you’re running at once.On the back, it has a 1.9-inch Super AMOLED cover display for notifications, shortcuts and music playback controls. A nice design touch is that the cover display also serves as a front camera when the phone is "unflipped" to snap pictures and record videos.Strength and DurabilityThe Flip 3 is serious about durability. This version is 80% stronger than its predecessor owing to the Gorilla Glass Victus. The new film covers the outer display and together with Armor Aluminum material on the phone’s frame, provides superior scratch resistance.Another big addition this year is the IPX8 water-resistance rating, which makes the phone more practical for everyday use as it effortlessly shrugs off rain and can handle any accidental splashes of water.PerformanceThe Z Flip 3 is powered by Qualcomm’s best mobile processor, the Snapdragon 888 CPU, and it runs on Android 11 with Samsung’s One UI. What’s more, Samsung has committed to providing Android version updates for the next three years – this should cover the upcoming Android 12 and versions 13 and 14.For gamers, you can expect quick load times even when playing intensive games such as Genhin Impact and Asphalt 9. Its speed and efficiency make it easy to navigate and move through many apps at once without the phone slowing you down. Not only is it fast, but it is also 5G enabled to deliver the best internet speeds possible with ultra-low latency and more reliability.Camera CapabilitiesIf you’re looking for a phone with good overall camera capabilities, the Flip 3 is it!The unique design makes it fun to snap selfies as you can use the 12MP dual rear cameras while the phone is folded. You will be able to watch the display and frame your shot to get the perfect snap, or you can simply "unflip" the phone and take a selfie the good old-fashioned way using the device’s front camera.The dual rear cameras are perfect for content creators or anyone who shares a lot of images on social media. Vloggers, for example, will find the Director’s View mode useful as it switches between multiple cameras while you record a video. Portrait Mode for video is another cool feature, allowing you to focus on yourself or your subject while creatively blurring the background.Equally impressive the night mode function which delivers bright images even in the darkest conditions, and each shot takes only about 2-3 seconds to process!VerdictIf you’re in the market for a clamshell-style folding phone, it doesn’t get better than the Samsung Galaxy Z Flip 3 when considering its price point, features and durability.


Is Google Play Pass Worth Your Rands?

Google Play Pass is Android’s answer to a one-stop gaming shop.After first launching in the USA in 2019, it is now available in most countries, including right here in South Africa.If you enjoy playing games on your phone or utilising helpful apps, Google Play Pass seems like the ideal option, but is it really worth it? Let’s find out.The Cost FactorThe app offers curated access to a collection of Google Play content for a monthly or a single yearly fee, with the option to add additional devices and up to five family members at no extra charge.To sign-up, your device needs to run on Android 4.4 or higher, with Google Play Store on version 16.6.25 and above.Subscription gives you flexible payment options to suit your needs. You can choose a month-to-month option for R42.99, which you can cancel at any time, or pay R385.99 per year and save 20%.With the app you can install a range of premium apps and games, as well as free content with the full versions unlocked, meaning you won’t have to pay for in-app purchases.What’s more, Play Pass allows you to enjoy an ad-free experience not just for premium games and apps but free content as well.Close To 1 000 Apps and Games AvailableBut what exactly are you getting with Google Play Pass?According to the search engine giant, nearly 950 games and apps – a list that is constantly growing every month.Although Google doesn’t publish a list of all the content available, you can browse through the options on the Play Pass section in the Play Store or check out the Play Pass “about page” on Google’s website. Both places give you a good idea of what you can get as a subscriber so you can decide if it suits your needs.Some of the recently added games and apps include, Delight Games (Premium Library), Space Marshals 3, Aftermath, AudioLab Audio Editor Recorder & Ringtone Maker, PicLab - Photo Editor, and much more.Should you subscribe?Considering all of the above, is Google Play Pass worth your money? If you use a lot of app content, especially premium content, the answer is yes. By subscribing, you won’t have to pay the full price for each game and app you download, and you bypass in-app purchases. Ultimately, you will have hundreds of options at your fingertips for less than R50 a month. And if you choose to open a Google Play Family account, your family or friends can also have full access for the same monthly or annual fee. That means plenty of content for everyone to enjoy and the possibility of splitting the cost.  If you’re still not sold, you can try out the one-month free trial before you spend any of your hard-earned money, and if it isn't for you, make sure to cancel before the charge hits your account!


Apple Arcade – Is It Worth It?

Apple’s first gaming subscription service, Apple Arcade promises users a premium experience – but is it worth the fuss?The Arcade offers exclusive access to hundreds of games from the Apple App Store at a fixed monthly rate, eliminating the need to pay for individual games and microtransactions.For R84,99 per month with the first month free when you subscribe for the first time, Apple users can install over 180 ad-free games across a range of devices, including the iPhone, iPod Touch, and iPad with at least iOS 13 or iPadOS13, and any Mac computer with at least macOS 10.15If you’re considering joining the Apple Arcade, here’s what you need to know:Cost FactorThe monthly rate gets you full access to a curated list of premium and free games. You can also add up to five other family members to the plan or sign up to another subscription plan that is more suited to those who use multiple devices for their gaming needs.The Apple One subscription gives you access to Apple Arcade, as well as Apple TV+, Apple Music, and iCloud storage. It is perfect for those already paying for other services and would like all their costs grouped into a single payment to save money. You can choose from Individual, Family, and Premier bundles, which range between R41 – R86, 95.Multi-Platform ServiceThe best part of Apple Arcade is its multi-platform feature that allows you to play most games on any Apple device without losing your saved files.This means you can start a game on your Apple TV, move to your iPhone and complete the mission on your Mac!However, there are some limitations because certain games are exclusive to devices – iPhone, iPad and iPod touch – while some are only accessible on Apple TV and require a controller.The service also offers an online gaming feature, meaning you can enjoy endless hours of fun even when you're not connected to the Internet.Growing Games ListOnce you’re subscribed to Apple Arcade, you will have a mix of new, exclusive titles and timeless classics at your fingertips.Apple recently added around 30 games to the Arcade library, including revived classics such as NBA 2K21 Arcade Addition, Cut the Rope Remastered and Oregon Trail as well as some newer titles.Although the tech giant’s list of games isn’t as long as other industry titans, there are plans to expand the library in the near future.To Subscribe or Not to Subscribe?The main drawcard of Apple Arcade is that gamers are able to enjoy a sizeable library with many high-profile titles without the interruption of ads, timers, in-app purchases or any other factors that affect game time.But like most other subscription gaming services, the biggest downside is that you don’t own the games. This means, once you cancel, you no longer have access to the games. But if you’re an avid mobile gamer who doesn’t mind this catch, then Apple Arcade will suit you fine.