It’s on sale for US$299 now:
The tablet world has changed a lot since all of my prior posts about this at my prior blog.
The production of iPad Mini clones has collapsed. The only new one is the iFive Mini 4s, which is a retread of the Mini 4 with a different back and Android 6.x.
SmartQ Reader has also gone through several updates and looks and acts differently than it did in those older posts.
And while that $299 price isn’t the lowest I’ve seen — I think it reached US$249 during the Christmas season — it made me try it again. Because, really, why not?
The same edition of The American Magazine makes iBooks crash on the iPad Mini 4 (and the iPad Pro 9.7!). Paging through, when I reach about thirty pages in, iBooks does a disappearing act. Other than that, the page rendering speed is faster than on the Tab S2 8.0.
I can’t say if a dedicated PDF app would also crash — because Apple prevents loading such things on all demo units.
But I know the Tab S2 8.0 with SmartQ Reader doesn’t crash. (And, at least on this demo unit, it could see the Android filesystem, unlike on the Tab S3 9.7).
I also noticed that, at least on this demo model, the screen didn’t go as blue as it would when viewed off-angle last year.
I also love its thinness, lack of weight (especially versus the borrowed Asus MeMoPad 7 I’ve lugged around), and the Tyrant Gold color.
Still, there’s no hurry here.
Apple might release a new Mini. Samsung could drop this price further (and I think they will). And who knows if the iFive Mini 4G might actually be worth taking a bet?