The iPad mini is no small investment. The entry level device costs $329 and comes loaded with a paltry 16 GB of storage. Sure, it's absolutely gorgeous. But 330 bucks certainly isn't pocket change. Because of this, I set out to find other things that you can buy for the same price OR lower that may be more worth it than a marginally smaller iPad. Read on for the full scoop, and don't forget to check back here on Sunday for the latest editorial!
The Google Nexus 7: It's hard to argue price without bringing Google's Nexus 7 into the discussion. The 7 inch tablet comes packed with a quad-core Tegra 3 Processor, 1 GB of DDR3 RAM, 8 GB of storage, and Google's latest and greatest mobile operating system all for an impulse buy price of only $199. For an extra fifty bucks you can snag the 16 GB model. However, there are rumors of the 16 moving down in price and the addition of a 32 GB unit. But the price difference is substantial, with a discount of $130 from the new iPad mini. That's a hefty difference when considering user functionality.
Apple's Own iPod touch: Let's get real here, you're buying the iPad mini to use as an entertainment device. Because of that, why would you ever want to pay more for the same thing? Apple's current line of iPod touch start at $299 and come preloaded with all the same goodies as the iPad mini, plus 32 GB of storage space. That's a considerable difference if you're simply looking for a device to do it all and be mobile. And even if all you want is that iOS experience the iPod touch 4th gen retails for $199 and comes with 16 GB of storage built in. What more could you want?
A LOT of Printers: I was surprised to find that a lot of the best consumer printers (with AirPrint, mind you) retail for less than $300 and come with all the general features users look for. In fact, one of HP's best units comes in at $300 itself.
52 Chipotle Burritos: If you frequent Chipotle then you know just how great of a value this is. $330 lands you 52 delectable Chipotle burritos. But, you can pick other food places too... Like for instance, $330 also gives you 330 McDoubles. You know, that delicious $1 sandwich with two all beef patties, a slice of cheese, pickles, diced onions, ketchup and mustard, and a buttery bun... oh boy my mouth is watering just thinking about it.
An Xbox 360 and a year of Xbox Live Gold: The latest Xbox Holiday Bundle with a 250GB console, Forza Motorsport 4, Skyrim, a wireless controller with a headset... only comes up to $250. And a year of Xbox Live Gold brings the price to $310. A year of Xbox gaming for less than one entry level iPad mini sounds like a good deal to me. Get it while it's hot here.
The Music Obsessive's Guide to Life Volume One: A collection of essays over 950 pages long on hundreds of great albums and songs can be yours for only $35. Like music? Want to like more music? Think you know a lot of great music? Then this book is for you! All you need is an open mind, an open ear, thirty five bucks, and something to bump your sound with and you've got a whole lotta awesome. Check out the book, and the Daily Guru of music here.
So yes, there are many things you can get for the price of an iPad mini. Most of these things are extremely awesome and helpful, and when compared to the mini, they're very cheap. And if you aren't convinced not to get the mini, than I have done my job, and you just ordered an iPad mini and a bunch of other stuff. Hats off to ya, kid.
Check back here every Sunday for weekly editorials and reviews by the technology rant master Max Bleich. And be sure to follow me on Facebook, Twitter, Google+, Youtube, Tumblr, and everywhere in-between!