Former Apple CEO Steve Jobs famously trashed 7" tablets as being "dead in the water" in 2010. Two years later, under the reign of new CEO Tim Cook, Apple has released its own miniature tablet—one that has a diagonal screen measurement of 7.9", which Apple considers vastly different than what's offered by similar small tablets.
"Apple has done extensive user testing on user interfaces over many years, and we really understand this stuff," Jobs said in 2010. Indeed, Apple believes the new iPad mini is superior in every way to its 7" competition, yet still offers the full iPad experience—just in a smaller package. "Every inch an iPad," reads Apple's product page for the iPad mini.
But is it really? In the weeks leading up to the iPad mini's release, Ars readers from all walks of life made it overwhelmingly clear that their main concern is the device's usability as it compares to the full-sized iPad. How's the screen? What are apps like when shrunken down? How long can you hold it without fatigue? Is it really a high-quality iPad experience, like that of the third- or fourth-generation iPad?