Wednesday, September 26, 2012

iPad Mini: A Few Educated Guesses and A Simple Wish list

Apple hasn’t spoken a word about any device called iPad mini, and even when it does release a smaller tablet, it’s bound to be named differently. However, the market for mini-tablets is huge, and Apple knows that more people would buy Apple products, if they could only afford it. A case in point is the tremendous sales boost that iPad 2 got when Apple reduced its price at the time the new iPad was released. While Apple hasn’t said something like, “coming soon: iPad mini,” the smart mobile industry is rife with rumors about a smaller version of the iPad.

Is iPad Mini Coming Soon? Is it Official News?

Apple has not breathed a word about the production or launch of smaller tablet. But considering the fact that Amazon and Android mini-tablets are doing well in the market, Apple would be compelled to enter the fray. Steve Jobs was adamant in his denial of building a mini-tablet, but the new CEO may not be averse to the idea. There are several photographs on the Internet that are purportedly leaked images of the iPad mini. If Apple does release a mini iPad, it would be reacting to the competition instead of creating a new device like it always does.

iPad Mini Specs and Features: An Educated Guess

Many market analysts speculate that iPad mini is coming soon. If Apple does release it, we will have it a month or two before Christmas. While the real features and specs will be available only once Apple officially releases them, industry experts suggest that iPad mini will have the following specs:

1. Screen Slightly bigger than 7”

While most mini-tablets come with seven-inch screen, it is said that the mini iPad will have a screen area of 7.85 inches. This screen will be substantially smaller than the iPad screen, but it will be more than twice as big as the iPhone screen.

2. High Screen Resolution

While it is unlikely that iPad mini will have the same resolution as the new iPad, rumors say that it will have 1024X768 screen resolution. This resolution will allow iPad apps to work perfectly on the iPad mini.

3. Camera

Leaked images of iPad mini shell suggest the mini iPad will have the main camera in the same position as iPad does. However, there have been rumors that Apple may place the camera in the centre of the mini tablet.

4. New Dock Connector

The current iPhone 5 has an 8pin connector while some other Apple devices have 30pin connectors. It is expected the new iPad will come equipped with a 19pin dock connector.

A Wish List of Features

Apart from the usual features, can we expect Apple to offer something special with the mini tablet? While iPad mini is coming soon (or so it is rumored), we aren’t yet sure of all the features. Before reality asserts itself, let’s dream of some amazing features in iPad mini.

1. Long battery life

Mini tablets should have a good battery life as they serve as daily companions and travel accessories. If iPad mini has a battery that lasts the whole day, that’d be great. It should have a battery that lasts for at least 7 hours.

2. 4G LTE If the mini iPad doesn’t have instant Internet connectivity, it won’t be much fun. If it depends on Wi-Fi, people may not be that interested in the device.

3. NFC

Many other mini tablets come equipped with NFC. While Apple’s not using NFC in iPhone 5 suggests that the company is not betting on NFC, we’d still like to see this or similar technology in the mini iPad.

4. Retina Display

The rumored 1024X768 screen resolution doesn’t sound very exciting. This resolution is not nearly good enough as iPhone or iPad. In order to ensure that iPad mini is more than just a second cousin to other Apple devices, it should be given a powerful retina display.

5. Slim and Light

Most mini tablets in the market are very thin and light. While the new iPad is pretty thin and light for a large tablet, the mini iPad will need to be a lot lighter and thinner in order to be portable.

Well, we’ll not need to wait too long to see what this new mini tablet offers. After all, if all the rumors are to be believed, iPad mini is coming soon!

Monday, September 10, 2012

5 Great iPad Apps for Teaching Kids Math, Science and Language

While the iPad was primarily conceived as an entertainment and business device, it has immense potential as a device for education. Over the years, several iPad game development companies have turned towards creating games and apps that help toddlers and kids to take their first steps towards understanding the world around them. At the same time, educational institutes and teachers are coming up with brilliant ideas. They hire an iPad game developer and transform their concepts in fantastic educational apps for the iPad. The following is a list of some of the best education iPad apps:

1. MathsMania

Boring texts and a difficulty to get along with numbers makes many kids hate math. MathsMania is a fun math puzzle game that will entice your kids to play with numbers. Its inviting graphics and extremely simple user interface will make your kids eager to explore different math puzzles. The game offers a wide range of different kinds of number puzzles, and it ensures that your kids don't get bored solving the same kinds of puzzles or watching the same type of images.

2. Intro to Letters (Montessori)

This is a simple game app based on the Montessori teaching method. Kids tend to take a long time learning letters and mastering the alphabet. Harnessing several iPad game development features this educational game for iPad allows children to trace their fingers around the letter to make the right shapes. Also, when your kid touches the letter, the letters are pronounced instead of being spoken, giving your child a feel for the language. There is also a simple and fun quiz that asks your kid to select the right letters on the basis of sounds.

3. How Rocket Learned to Read

This is a picture book app that will introduce your child to the love of reading. The game offers a number of letter recognition and spelling quizzes. The book also offers two options: your child can either read on his own by selecting the “Read it Myself” option, or he can ask the app to read the book to him by selecting the “Read it to Me” options. There's even an option that allows the kids to see all the alphabets. The kids can click on the alphabets to hear the sound of the letters.

4. Play123

This is one of the best iPad game and education apps for kids. If your kid needs a lot of stimuli to learn, this is the app he will love. The app offers a plethora of playful games and activities that will teach your child to recognize shape, color, size and numbers. The sheer variety of games and learning activities present in this app make it a great option for your kids.

5. Star Walk

Star walk is one of the most loved educational apps for kids. Leveraging several iPad game development features, the iPad version of Star Walk will make your kid fall in love with this universe, and it will teach him lot of things about astronomy. The augmented reality feature works very well on the iPad, and your kids are bound to enjoy this game app.