Thursday, December 12, 2013

iPad mini with Retina Display - STAPLES and Technology update

Last October, I wrote a post about Staples and Technology and shared with you what I was planning to purchased with the gift card I received from them.  However, I had to wait – patiently – until the product I had picked would be available at Staples.

The wait was longer that I expected…   It was originally announced that the iPad mini with retina display would arrive in November but the month came and went by quite rapidly.

To make the anticipation a bit more challenging, I had mentioned to my husband early in November that we should sell my iPod and iPad 1 on a used site.   What we didn’t expect was to sell both quite rapidly within a few days of posting the ads.   To our pleasure we even got a bit more than we were anticipating.

So selling the devices went well…   now I had to wait.  Fortunately, I was able to borrow my husband iPad2 in order to continue to track our homeschool days.  I would say that this app is definitively essentials for me.   

As I mentioned the month of November went by and still no news on when the iPad mini with Retina Display would arrive at Staples.   The once-a-year sale at Apple was tempting but we resisted – thanks to my husband’s wisdom.

Finally on December 4th, I decided to check the website of Staples to see if there was any changes.  And guess what…  I could see them on the site!  The iPad mini with Retina Display were available.  I quickly selected the one I was planning to purchase – the black 128 GB but unfortunately it was Out Of Stock.   Seriously?   Oh well.   I checked to see if the silver one was available and it was.   Should I purchase this one instead.   As I debated about my options, I realized that while I looked at both colors I preferred the silver one over the black one.   My choice was made.  However, I quickly discovered that I couldn’t use the gift card on an online order.  What?  So I called the store near my house and was told that the only possible solution would be to come in store, order it through the website and get it delivered there and once it arrives to return it in order to repurchased it with the gift card.  Are you following me here?

Step 1: Go to the store.  Purchase the item using the same online site which means I can’t use the gift card immediately.

Step 2: Get the item delivered to the store.

Step 3: When the item arrives at the store, go back to said store in order to return it.  Then repurchase it using the gift card.

Honestly, I find this is a long process.  But since it was the only way to get my iPad mini with Retina Display, I went along with it making sure that the manager of the store confirmed on paper that it would be okay to return and repurchase right away.   No problem I was told.  Okay.  Let’s do it.  So on December 4th, I drove to the Staples, ordered my iPad and waited 24 hours to get it.  Apparently the warehouse is in Montreal and I was told that the delivery would be the next day.  IMG_9967

The next day I got the phone call right after lunch that the order was in.  I went back to the store and dealt with the return/repurchase.   It didn’t took long and the staff at the store was very nice.   Finally, I had my iPad mini with Retina Display.  The box was small enough for me to slide it in my purse as I went back to my vehicle.

IMG_9968As soon as I was home, I decided to open the box (hey what can I say I waited a long time for this moment) and proceed to install some apps on it.   I liked the small device and knew that it would just be perfect for reading before falling asleep.  The iPod was too small for reading – I disliked it while my husband really enjoy reading with his iPhone – and the bigger iPad was just too big and would be too heavy for my wrists.  (In case you wonder why – I have an issue with my left wrist which develop tendonitis every once in a while.  It happens sometimes with the right one but not as often.)

That afternoon, I installed some apps, my music, some videos, books and so on.   With 128 GB of storage trust me that you have plenty of space to install whatever you want.   The main reason why I wanted to move to the new iPad mini with Retina Display was that not only it would be smaller to handle and carry in my purse but I could double the storage on one device instead of having two devices of 64 GB each.  

You must be wondering what I think of the iPad mini with Retina Display since it has been over a week I have it….   Two words.  LOVE IT!    It’s the best decision I have ever made.   I have everything in one device and it’s just perfect for me.   I am still discovering advantages of having it as I am writing this. 

Last week-end, I hosted a little birthday party for my sweet daughter.   She will be turning 6 next week and because her birthday is so close to Christmas, we decided to have her birthday party earlier in the month of December.   She wanted a Princess birthday party and I decided to make a Princess cake for her.    I had purchased a Princess Barbie and baked a “dress for it”.  She really loved her cake and I decided to use the iPad mini to take a picture of my princess with her cake. 


I will admit that I am quite impressed with the quality of the photos taken with the iPad mini with Retina Display.    The technology for these small cameras has gone a long way since it first appeared on the iPhone.   Before I would find the picture too grainy but now it is clear and stunning.    I look forward to explore new possibilities of photography with the iPad mini (and will admit that I need to practice to handle this way of taking pictures – it is quite different than my Canon!).

One of the build-in apps that I particularly find fun (and that myimage kids simply adore) is the Photo Booth.

With this app you can make a funny face or take a nutty picture of yourself, your kids or your friends and apply an effect to it.  You can have the thermal camera, the mirror, the x-ray, the kaleidoscope, the light tunnel, the squeeze, the twirl or the stretch effect.   You can also take a normal picture if your like.   But the effects brings the most laughter in my household – trust me.


Most people dislike change. But from what I have seen so far with the new iPad mini with Retina Display and the new iOS, I must say that I like what I have experienced so far.  I enjoy have the new design for the calendar, the contacts, the camera, the new look of the icons and so on.   Having a device back in my hands is very nice as well.  I find that I read more using the iPad mini than I was when I had the iPad 1.   This week, as we drove to the swimming lessons, the kids were able to listen to some Adventures in Odyssey.   They missed having the possibility of picking the episode to listen after I had sold my iPod.

I made wise decisions when I opted to get an iPad mini with Retina Display and choose to sell my previous devices.   The wait was worth it and I am enjoying my new tablet.  Now if only the case I ordered can arrive….  *grin*    I won’t complain because I got a really good price on it so I will be patient while waiting for it.

In the meantime, if you are wondering what to get to your love one this Christmas season (and you have the budget for it!  Don’t get into debt for this…) I would like to suggest that you consider getting an iPad mini with Retina Display at Staples.   Not only can you install the Kindle app on it and read but it can be used for numerous things as well – taking notes at a meeting, facebooking, finding recipes on pinterest, read the news, play games and much more.   You won’t be disappointed with the iPad mini with Retina Display

I want to thank Staples for the opportunity to do the Technology post for them and for the gift card they have send me.  With it I was able to reduce the price of the iPad mini with Retina Display when it came to purchase it.  

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Disclaimer: Full disclosure, Staples provided me with a gift card to inspire me to share my experience. All thoughts and opinions expressed are my own.

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