Xiaomi Mi Pad vs iPad mini Retina: Tablet Battle

Posted by B. Johnson
January 22, 2015 | 0 comments
Xiaomi Mi Pad vs iPad mini Retina: Tablet BattleHi guys, welcome back!

Around the smartphone market, there’s no doubt that Xiaomi has made such a huge mark in this industry with its smartphones.

Thanks to its brilliant marketing strategy – known as hunger marketing, which is by selling limited amount of its high-spec’d smartphones in affordable price range through online stores -, this Chinese-based company has managed to ship million units of devices every quarter of each year.

And more impressively, Xiaomi has already kicked Samsung and Apple out as the top smartphone manufacturers in China and gained the top position on the list.

In fact, Xiaomi currently becomes one of the top 5 biggest smartphone manufacturers in the world, alongside Apple and Samsung.

Xiaomi Mi Pad vs iPad mini Retina benchmarks and gaming performance

But apparently, it still doesn’t make this company fully satisfied with this huge achievement.

After having managed to gain its ground in smartphone industry, Xiaomi still has another vision on other markets. One of them is tablet market.

Through its own homemade Xiaomi Mi Pad tablet, this company surprisingly is aiming its bullets straightly at Apple’s tablet – iPad mini with Retina.

And that can be clearly seen on how powerful this tablet really is, especially in terms of hardware specs.

And that’s the reason why today i’m really interested to bring up this Xiaomi’s tablet in the same ring against Apple’s mini tablet.

I think it could be pretty awesome to explore more about these 2 tablets and see how they fare against each other, especially when knowing that Xiaomi Mi Pad bears the striking resemblance in many ways with iPad mini with Retina, like the screen specs, the design, the UI, etc.

Well, if you’re also eager to know more about these 2 tablets and see how they stack up against each other, including my take on their gaming performance and experience as a whole, then here you go, my comparison review between Xiaomi Mi Pad and iPad mini with Retina. Enjoy!

Introduction

No one’s gonna argue about how powerful and popular iPad really is. Despite being an expensive and premium tablet, it’s so amazing how this tablet still generates the same huge demands across the tablet market.

And more impressively, with the arrivals of so many high-grade powerful tablets from Android camp – with higher specs and more powerful performance -, iPads are still selling like hotcakes on this market.

And that’s truly amazing because it’s not easy to gain the same great achievement that Apple has grasped through its iPads.

But apparently, there’s one company that in my opinion, has a huge chance to ruin Apple’s superiority on tablet market in the coming years, or even months. And that is Xiaomi.

Through its homemade Xiaomi Mi Pad tablet, i think this Chinese-based company could become the next big tablet manufacturer in the near future, alongside Apple.

In fact, i think Xiaomi Mi Pad has all what it takes to be an iPad mini Retina killer.

The reason to believe that is probably because this Xiaomi Mi Pad comes with some high-grade – even monster – specs here and there on its hardware.

First of all, it’s powered by NVIDIA’s latest and greatest Tegra K1 processor - which according to some benchmark tests on some tech sites, it managed to outperform iPad’s chipset and bring 3 times graphical performance than A7 processor.

With that being said, then the graphical performance of Xiaomi’s tablet is already superior than iPad mini with Retina.

But that’s not it. There’s more. Similar just like Apple’s iPad mini with Retina, this Xiaomi Mi Pad surprisingly also adopts the same exact 7.9-inch display sporting the same 1536x2048 pixel resolution – or known as iPad’s “Retina Display” -, even with the same pixel density of -324 ppi, just like the one found on iPad mini with Retina.

And i know that the display quality of Xiaomi devices is really good and has great viewing angle, thanks to Xiaomi’s decision to use Sharp as one of the screen suppliers for its devices.

But the questions still remain. With all of the amazing goodies found on Xiaomi Mi Pad,

Does this tablet have all what it takes to be an iPad mini 2 killer? Which one between Xiaomi Mi Pad and iPad mini Retina that has more powerful gaming performance? Which one between these 2 tablets that is a better gaming tablet?

Well, hopefully we’re about to find out more about the answers of these questions at the end of this review. So be sure to stick around guys!

Design

In terms of design, it’s pretty obvious that Xiaomi Mi Pad is hugely – i mean really hugely – “inspired” by the same looking design of iPad mini Retina.

And that can be clearly seen by the size of bezels plus aspect ratio of this tablet, which blatantly copies Apple’s mini tablet.

As a matter of fact, Xiaomi Mi Pad is also using the same exact screen specs of iPad mini Retina – with the same 7.9-inch display, 1536x2048 pixel resolution, -324 ppi and even 4:3 aspect ratio.

Xiaomi Mi Pad
Xiaomi Mi Pad

iPad Air
iPad Air

So as a result, Xiaomi Mi Pad looks really identical just like iPad mini Retina.

But the good thing is, iPad mini Retina looks more superior than Xiaomi’s tablet with its aluminum material all over its body, making it look more premium and expensive than Xiaomi Mi Pad.

But despite using a totally plastic material, Xiaomi Mi Pad actually still feels really good and comfortable in hands, and it’s not prone to catch finger prints.

In fact, many tech reviewers around YouTube also agree that the plastic material of Xiaomi devices is really good. It doesn’t feel cheap as glossy plastic and it feels slick in hands.

However, if compared side-by-side with Apple’s mini tablet, then it’s no-brainer if iPad mini Retina is far more superior than Xiaomi Mi Pad, in both build quality and materials.

But that’s not shocking given that this iPad mini costs more expensive than Xiaomi Mi Pad, which is only priced at $250.

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Xiaomi Mi PadiPad mini 2 Retina
No SIM
Released June 2014
7.9 inch IPS LCD capacitive touchscreen, 1536 x 2048 pixels, (~324 ppi pixel density), 16M colors
Corning Gorilla Glass 3 Protection
2 GB RAM
Quad-core 2.2 GHz Cortex-A15 Nvidia Tegra K1 Chipset
ULP GeForce Kepler (192 cores) GPU
Android OS
16/64 GB of Internal storage
microSD Memory Card slo for up to 128 GB
8 MP rear-facing camera
5 MP front-facing camera
No GPRS, No EDGE
USB
Wi-Fi 802.11 a/b/g/n/ac
Bluetooth
HTML5 Browser
No Radio
No GPS
Accelerometer, gyro, compass Sensors
Java MIDP emulator
Colors Blue, Green, Yellow, Pink, White, Gray
Li-Po 6700 mAh battery
Up to 11 hours of Talk time (multimedia)
Up to 86 hours of Music play
    Released November 2013
    Nano-SIM
    7.9 inch LED-backlit IPS LCD capacitive touchscreen
    1536 x 2048 pixels (~324 ppi pixel density) 16M colors
    iOS 7 (upgradable to iOS 8.1.2)
    Apple A7 Dual-core 1.3 GHz Cyclone (ARM v8-based) Chipset
    PowerVR G6430 quad-core GPU   
    No micro card slot   
    16/32/64/128 GB Internal storage
    1 GB RAM DDR3
    5 MP rear-facing camera
    1.2 MP front-facing camera (720p@30fps video recording)
    Wi-Fi 802.11
    Bluetooth v4.0
    GPS
    No Radio
    USB v2.0
    Accelerometer, gyro, compass Sensors
    Safari Browser (HTML5)
    No Java   
    Siri
    iCloud
    Non-removable Li-Po 6470 mAh battery
    Talk time (multimedia): for up to 10 hours

    If there’s any sector that Xiaomi Mi Pad is really superior at than iPad mini Retina, it’s definitely its specs. This is actually the thing that really impresses me a lot with this tablet.

    It may not carry the same aluminum material all over its body and premium price tag of iPad mini Retina, but impressively, this Xiaomi tablet comes packed with the specs that can be considered as “on par” and even more powerful than what iPad mini Retina has to offer.

    First of all, Xiaomi Mi Pad comes with the same exact screen specs of iPad mini Retina – from the same 7.9-inch display, 1536x2048 pixels, -324 ppi and even the same 4:3 aspect ratio.

    And the display quality of this Xiaomi Mi Pad is also as good as iPad mini Retina, given that SHARP is the one that supplies the screen for this tablet (and other Xiaomi devices).

    And as you already know, SHARP is also one of the big suppliers for Apple devices (and Apple actually the one that saved this manufacturer from bankruptcy in the past).

    So with that being said, then the display of Xiaomi Mi Pad is definitely on par with iPad mini Retina.

    Second of all, Xiaomi Mi Pad is powered by NVIDIA’s latest and greatest Tegra K1 processor – which has been proved as a really powerful chipset and even could deliver the same graphical performance as today’s desktops/PCs.

    And more impressively, this Tegra K1 processor – according to some benchmark tests on some tech sites – also managed to outperform Apple’s A7 chipset inside this iPad mini Retina and proved to be capable to bring 3 times graphic power of A7 processor.

    So that already shows how superior the performance and graphical power of Xiaomi Mi Pad compared to iPad mini Retina.

    But even so, both Xiaomi Mi Pad and iPad mini Retina are powerful equally, in terms of specs. Xiaomi Mi Pad comes with a quad-core Tegra K1 processor, a 7.9-inch “Retina” display, 2GB of RAM, 8MP rear-facing camera, 5MP front-facing camera, 192-core Kepler GPU, Android OS, 6700mAh power battery and many more.

    Meanwhile, iPad mini Retina comes with the same screen specs just like Xiaomi Mi Pad, 64-bit A7 processor, 1GB of RAM, PowerVR G6430 GPU, iOS 7 out of the box and some other more.

    Screen

    As mentioned above, both Xiaomi Mi Pad and iPad mini Retina come with the same exact screen specs. Xiaomi Mi Pad and iPad mini Retina are packing the same exact 7.9-inch display with 1536x2048 pixel resolution, pixel density of -324 ppi and both also adopt the same 4:3 aspect ratio, making the display look wider horizontally and the tablet feel bigger on hands.

    However, if compared side-by-side against each other, i think the screen of iPad mini Retina could be the winner here especially because iPads have been known for years with its amazing display, while Xiaomi Mi Pad is actually the only tablet made/released by Xiaomi.

    So when it comes to overall quality of its screen, there’s no doubt that iPad mini Retina is more superior than Xiaomi Mi Pad. The sharpness, the colors and everything on the screen just looks better.

    But even so, the screen of Xiaomi Mi Pad is actually still good in the whole aspect. And that’s because – as mentioned earlier – the screen of this tablet is supplied by no other than SHARP – which also is one of the suppliers of Apple devices.

    Not to mention, its display has the same exact specs just like iPad mini Retina.

    So if there is any quality difference between the screens of these 2 tablets, i believe their difference is not that significantly.

    So with that being said, both devices are still equally great on the sector of screen.

    They are good for watching HD movies, reading books/magazines, browsing the web, editing documents or even playing games.

    User Interface

    Xiaomi has been hugely criticized by the tech world especially for the blatant similarities of its devices with Apple iPhone.

    As a matter of fact, the MIUI – the UI of Xiaomi devices – look and work almost similar with the design concept of Apple’s iOS, which basically is an icon-grid-based UI, although iOS looks more polished and more premium compared to MIUI.

    And that also happens here with Xiaomi Mi Pad. Not only does this tablet have the same looking design as iPad mini Retina, but its MIUI also looks similar with iOS 7.

    And its blatant similarity will be much even stronger when MIUI 6 finally arrives for this tablet.

    But even so, despite having the same looking UI design layout, the user interface of Xiaomi Mi Pad actually can be considered as more attractive and intuitive than iOS 7 on iPad mini Retina.

    I mean, it has more features on its homescreen (like swapping/moving many apps at once with left-right finger gesture, moving apps with 2 hands, etc) and it also has more variety and better visual presentations than what iPad mini has on its iOS 7.

    So despite looking similar with iOS 7, i think the MIUI of Xiaomi Mi Pad still offers something great to users that probably cannot be found on iPad mini Retina.

    Back to Top
    As a Tegra K1 tablet, it’s no brainer that Xiaomi Mi Pad is much better performing tablet than iPad mini Retina, especially for gaming.

    And that has been proved by benchmark tests held by some respected tech sites across the net, which gave the crown to Tegra K1 processor over Apple A7 chipset as it’s capable to deliver 3 times graphical performance than Apple’s A7 SoC.

    So in terms of gaming performance, there’s no single doubt that Xiaomi Mi Pad is untouchable by Apple’s mini tablet.

    When it comes to gaming experience, however, iPad mini Retina is probably much better than Xiaomi Mi Pad especially because it has full support from all game developers across the iOS and bigger catalog of well-optimized games specifically for this iPad mini Retina.

    And not to mention, it has Metal API (of course, when upgraded to iOS 8), which will be crucial with the gaming experience of this tablet especially when the next-gen games finally arrive in 2015.

    So the next-gen games for iPad mini Retina – along with iPad Air -, will have more advanced graphics and visual effects probably than the games on other platforms.

    And with this Metal API, it’s gonna make it harder for game developers to implement the same exact graphics and visual effect goodies on iOS games to Android games.

    And this is why the gaming experience of iPad mini Retina is much better than Xiaomi Mi Pad, despite not having the same powerful gaming performance of Xiaomi’s tablet.

    But even so, the users of Xiaomi Mi Pad can still be proud with this tablet because – thanks to a powerful Tegra K1 processor, plus NVIDIA’s close relationship with many famous console/PC game developers -, the next-gen games for Tegra K1 devices are also really superior in terms of graphics and visual effects.

    Not to mention, just like on iPad mini Retina, the graphics and visual effects of Tegra K1 games can only be found on Tegra K1 devices, not on other non-Tegra K1 tablets and even iPads.

    So this makes Xiaomi Mi Pad “on the same level” with iPad mini Retina in terms of gaming experience. But then again, Xiaomi Mi Pad has more powerful gaming performance than iPad mini Retina.

    So at the end of the day, i’ve got to say that Xiaomi Mi Pad is indeed a better gaming tablet than iPad mini Retina.

    Anyway guys, if you want to know more about the gaming performance of Xiaomi Mi Pad and iPad mini 2 Retina, including what games that will run on these tablets, check out my YouTube video playlist or Pinterest page. :)

    Camera

    Camera has always been one of the strongest points on all Apple iDevices. And iPad mini Retina is no exception.

    Thanks to its 5MP much improved iSight camera on the back, every shot you take with this Apple tablet, all will result in great quality photos and videos. No doubt about that.

    So long story short, if you’re still looking for a great tablet that has the best camera on the market, then look no further, iPad mini Retina can be your great shot here.

    Impressively, it goes the same with Xiaomi Mi Pad. Thanks to its 8MP rear-facing camera – supplied by Samsung if i’m not mistaken -, this tablet amazingly is capable to take some decent quality shots.

    And that can be clearly seen when you take 720p videos by using this tablet. The video looks really sharp and crisp, and the sound quality is impressively good.

    And i’ve already seen it on some video reviews on YouTube. It may not be as great as the 5MP iSight camera on iPad mini Retina, but at least the quality is still considerably good and sharp.

    Battery Life

    Besides camera, Apple iPads have also been popularly known for its strong battery life. And that’s the thing that you’re gonna find on this iPad mini Retina.

    Even though its battery capacity is not as huge as the larger iPad Air (8220mAh battery), the overall battery life of this mini iPad is still very good and it even could last in a solid day in heavy use.

    More impressively, this tablet is still really powerful when used for playing heavy intense games. This probably contradicts with Xiaomi Mi Pad.

    Despite using a huge 6700mAh battery capacity, i think this Xiaomi’s tablet is not gonna survive as long as the iPad mini Retina. And there are many reasons that back this argument.

    First of all, this tablet is powered by an insanely powerful Tegra K1 processor, which is really power hungry.

    And second of all, MIUI of this tablet is really heavy and consumes a lot of energy from the battery, especially when many widgets are deployed on the homescreen.

    So as a result, this tablet is probably not gonna last in a full solid day in heavy use – especially for doing some heavy stuff without resting the screen at all (like watching HD movies in marathon or playing games in the row).

    But even so, if you’re not a power user and will only use this device in your spare time, you can totally expect to see this tablet survive in a solid day – of course, on a full charge.

    My Personal Opinions

    So in conclusion, between these 2 tablets, i think i have to go with Xiaomi Mi Pad in this comparison review. The reasons are actually pretty clear. First of all, i like the price of this tablet.

    With only $250, you can get an amazing powerful tablet that has the best gaming performance on the market right now, even than the iPads.

    And second of all, i like the overall specs of this device. It has the same exact “Retina display” of iPad mini Retina, an insanely powerful Tegra K1 processor, 2GB of RAM, a staggering 192-core Kepler GPU, 8MP and 5MP back and front cameras (which are able to take some decent quality shots by the way).

    Third of all, Xiaomi Mi Pad has microSD card slot for up to 128GB, as opposed to the NO microSD card slot on iPad mini Retina.

    And this probably will be the thing that really affects the final decision of buyers when choosing between these 2 tablets.

    Fourth of all, this tablet has more powerful gaming performance than iPad mini Retina as its Tegra K1 processor is capable to bring 3 times graphical power of A7 chipset inside this iPad mini 2, as proved by benchmark tests held by some respected tech sites.

    And final of all, it has more attractive UI than iOS 7 on iPad mini Retina. It has more features and probably better visual presentation than the iOS 7.

    Not to mention, it gives a full control to its users to customize the entire looks of this UI, something that has been lacking on iOS for the past few years.

    iPad mini Retina may have premium aluminum material, better cameras and stronger battery, but on many sectors of these 2 devices, Xiaomi Mi Pad is more superior than Apple’s tablet, even in gaming performance and experience as a whole.

    So in my final conclusion, in the whole aspect, i think Xiaomi Mi Pad is slightly better than iPad mini Retina.

    Disclaimer: Hi guys, bear in mind that this is not some in-depth review. This is Read more...
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