Is the new iPad mini worth it over mini 4?

We have an old iPad mini 2 that we keep in the kitchen. My wife usually uses it for recipes, I use it for music or to look up stuff on the web. Lately it seems to be running out of power rather soon. It used to last a week between charges. At first I wondered if it was an iOS update, but after looking at its usage I now think it’s just the 3-4 year old battery.

Anyway, since a battery replacement will likely cost quite a bit, I figured we might as well get a new one. I think 64 GB is too limited and $550 for the 256 GB model is not going to happen. The refurb store has a 128GB mini 4 for $300. Price sounds reasonable. And 128 GB is the perfect capacity for me.

I don’t think any of the new things the refreshed mini has are important to me, but I do wonder about the mini 4’s A8 and longevity. With the iPhone 6 getting bumped from iOS 13, it appears next year might be the last to see OS support for the A8. Does anybody here think a mini 4 has any chance at longevity?

Apple will replace an iPad battery for $99, a 3rd party would probably do it for less. iFixit sells a iPad mini 2 battery replacement kit for $45; I wouldn’t do this kind of thing myself but it can give you a sense of what the “floor” is for this kind of work.

I do not. iOS 13 already dropped the iPhone 6, 6 Plus, and iPod touch, which all also have the A8 processor. The only difference is the iPad mini 4 processor runs slightly faster and has twice the RAM. The mini 4 was only succeeded by a 5th gen. model in March but the same was true of the 6th gen. iPod touch so anyone who bought one before March won’t ever get an iOS upgrade.

A refurbed 5th gen. 9.7 iPad with 128GB storage is $309. It has an A9 processor and was only introduced in March 2017 so it’s almost certain it will be supported by next year’s iOS. The 6th gen. refurb is $369.

I have a Mini 4 here, which is still trucking along just fine. I know that as some point in the future Apple will stop supporting it, but I’ll continue to use it for as long as the hardware will hold up. That was a refurbished model bought direct from Apple in 2017. It does service as a podcast player, music player, radio, alarm clock, ebook reader and games device, so I could see myself eventually getting a newer (non-Pro) iPad next year and keep this device by my bedside for the remainder of its days.

That sounds like a great guess to me. The iPhone 5s and the other A7 devices (Air, Mini 2, Mini 3) did get a seemingly “extra year” of iOS updates with iOS 12, as the A6 iPhone 5 and 5c stopped with iOS 10. I suppose it’s possible that the A8 devices will get one more year. But if I was making that buying decision, I’d probably factor into the buying decision that iOS 13 is it for the Mini 4.

If your Mini is working fine and doing everything you want it to, think about charging it more often rather then sending it to iPad heaven. My 4th generation iPad is still going gangbusters even though I have to charge it about every other day, if not more often. I use it while it’s charging quite a bit. The only problem is that I find I’m running into websites it doesn’t display properly a little more often, but no biggie.

Well I have an iPhone SE and it has an A9 processor. So I really don’t know where I stand. I will just have to wait when the release comes out.