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iPad Mini Announcement – Does it matter?

2012 October 23

The All-New iPad MiniApple unveiled their new iPad Mini family of tablet products today along with a variety of updates to other Apple products including the Mac Mini and the fourth generation iPad.

So after all the hype settles down, does any of this matters for corporations around the world?

Yes. The consumerization of mobile IT marches on. Here is one more product and form factor organizations must support. The iPad Mini also provides a form factor more conducive to many enterprise mobility tasks, which will continue the seepage of Apple products across the modern enterprise.

Apple highlighted many corporate milestones with this announcement: 100 million iPads sold, 80% of the U.S. high school education curriculum available as iBooks, 2500 schools using iPad and iBooks.

All of this means that mobile products like the iPad Mini are on course to become as ubiquitous as paper. The new iPad Mini form factor is easier to carry, easier to put away, and capable of blazing fast LTE Internet connectivity. And the iPad Mini will likely drive sales of similar sized Android and Windows tablets.

Flight attendants and pilots may find iPad Mini more suitable to their job than paper or the growing number of full-sized iPads for flight plan replacement options. Students and teachers may find iPad Mini more useful as a book replacement. Mobile commerce may find sales strongest in this form factor because of a larger screen size allowing easier checkout while a smaller size allowing iPad Mini to be brought along with shoppers more often that full-sized iPads.

Enterprises, however, should tread carefully as they design their offerings for iPad Mini. I suspect the slightly modified responsive design adaptation many companies are providing to provide full-size iPad support won’t work for iPad Mini. I think most companies will need to provide a more tailored experience for the iPad Mini regardless of whether the offering is for consumers or employees.

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