There weren't many surprises at the unveiling of the newest iPads, but two of them were attached to the iPad Mini 2. First, the price increase. With Google and Amazon putting more pressure on Apple by upping the ante on their 7-inch tablets, who would have thought that Apple would respond by increasing the price of the iPad Mini?
It sounds quite counterintuitive, but slipping under the radar is the inclusion of the A7 chipset in the iPad Mini. The original iPad Mini was released alongside the iPad 4 but included the iPad 2's system-on-a-chip, making it a hybrid of the new and the old. The newest iPad Mini is an iPad -- just as powerful as the iPad Air --- simply smaller.
That's big. As in choose your size and not your experience big.
The original iPad Mini becomes the new entry-level iPad, with a very slight drop to $299 in price. I'd have liked to see this a little lower, but not a bad entry-level price. But the $399 iPad Mini 2 is going to be the real sweet spot in the lineup.