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It’s finally here, folks! Apple has just announced the all-new iPad mini at their event today. It’s (mostly) exactly what the technology blogosphere was expecting: a smaller iPad 2. Check out all the basic specifications, pricing and availability after the jump!

Display

Let’s get right into it: the iPad mini gets its name from its noticeably smaller display which is 7.9-inches. Its resolution matches that of the iPad 2, at 1024 x 768 giving a pixel density of 163ppi which, by today’s standards, is rather shabby.

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Cameras

The iPad mini is accompanied by two cameras, one at the front which supports FaceTime HD, and a 5-megapixel iSight Camera at the back which shoots video at 1080p.

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Yes, the same rear-facing camera found in the latest generation iPad. In short; you don’t just get a smaller iPad, you also get an amazing camera which you can carry around with you most of the times.

Lightning Connector

And as you might expect, the 30-pin connector is a long gone story and the iPad mini comes with Apple’s brand-new Lightning connector which made its debut with the iPhone 5, fifth-gen iPod touch and the seventh-gen iPod nano.

Dimensions/Weight

Besides the reduced display size, the overall dimensions of the device have also been scaled down: It is slimmer and will, most definitely, have an appropriately reduced weight. Weighs in at just 0.68lbs, this thing is really, really light as far as we can tell. The device is just 7.2mm thick, and is dubbed as being thinner than a pencil. I guess we’ll buy that notion.

Processor/Battery life

With 10-hours of battery life, Apple hasn’t made any sort of sacrifice! And we really mean that. The iPad mini is powered an A5 processor, the one found inside the iPad 2.

Price

iPad mini comes in Apple’s usual selection of colors: black and white. There are three storage configurations – 16GB ($329) / 32GB ($429) / 64GB ($529) – and two configurations based on connectivity – Wi-Fi only and LTE (add $130).

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This is considerably more expensive than other 7.x inch Android-based tablets that start at $159 / $199, but that’s not unexpected coming from a company like Apple which charges a heavy premium for its devices. At least this is lower than the revised iPad 2 which cost $399.

Smart Cover

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The iPad mini will be complimented with the iPad mini Smart Cover, the same cover which we’ve already seen on the iPad 2 and the current generation iPad, except that it’s smaller. The available colors are dark gray, pink, blue, green, light gray and our favorite; red.

Siri

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You think Apple left our Siri from this release? Well, no! Siri is a part of the iPad mini now, as well. Making its debut on the iPhone 4S, then making its way onto the third-gen iPad, then the iPhone 5 and iPod touch. Siri has found a new home; the iPad mini.

Availability

The iPad mini will be in stores in selected countries on November 2nd, with a wider availability rolled out in stages. Online pre-ordering start on Friday; we’ll inform you when it goes live so stay tuned!

Combine the smaller display with slimmer, lighter design, lower price and you have a tablet that goes head to head with the likes of the popular Nexus 7 and Kindle Fire HD. The next few months will be very interesting as we will see how not just consumers, but also how Google and Amazon will respond to it.

And oh, every app which works on the larger iPad works flawlessly on the iPad mini. Hence, the devs can rest assured that their apps can get into the hands of many at launch.

What do you think about the iPad mini? Is it being just a smaller iPad 2 in 2012-2013 too little, too late for you? Or do you believe it’s exactly how it should’ve been? Let us know in the comments section on Facebook and Google+.

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