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New iPad Mini 6 announced

Today the new iPad Mini 6 was announced. Is it the ultimate companion for the GA pilot?
I’ve been using an iPad Pro 11 (latest series) in the cockpit for a while on a kneeboard, with ForeFlight, and with the pencil I didn’t use paper anymore.
I love that setup (except when it shuts down due to the heat, solved with a cooling kneeboard), but I always found it a bit too big. I fly mainly on Pipers and it actually fits on my knee without interfering with the yoke, even though it’s clearly there, but on a Diamond DA42 it’s really in the way.
I have been hoping for the same kind of device (small bezel screen, apple pencil 2, USB-C, Face ID) but in a smaller package for a while, and it seems it’s now there! (No Face ID though).
I want to see it in real life, as I got used to a big screen and the smaller one might feel very small if you are used to the Pro 11, but I got excited about this new device as it looks like a big step compared to the previous iPad mini’s, and wanted to share it here.
What do you think about it?

EHLE LIMB, Netherlands

I’ll probably upgrade from the mini 3 to this mini 6. It was surprising to see how they pitched the new iPad mini as a cockpit tool during the presentation. Not sure about the stylus though. Most of the features of this iPad are useless in a cockpit environment, but I look forward to the higher processing power.

EBST, Belgium

NicoKM wrote:

Today the new iPad Mini 6 was announced. Is it the ultimate companion for the GA pilot?

What can it do for a pilot that the previous iPad Mini 5 can’t?

ESKC (Uppsala/Sundbro), Sweden

It is probably as useful/useless as all the others, shutting down pretty reliably in a warm cockpit. My son has an Ipad4 which does it 100%. On a summer flight in the south, they work only if near an air vent.

I am keeping my old Samsung T705 but of course it won’t run any modern aviation software (except EVFR or SD).

More CPU power → more heat to be dissipated. No free lunch.

Administrator
Shoreham EGKA, United Kingdom

Peter wrote:

It is probably as useful/useless as all the others, shutting down pretty reliably in a warm cockpit.

I’m using an iPad mini 5 and it has never shut down or otherwise malfunctioned no matter how warm the cockpit was.

ESKC (Uppsala/Sundbro), Sweden

I’using an iPad air 4 and although it is clearly a bit too big in piper cockpit, it is clear, fast and never stops even in hot summer. I an going from a right yoke mount to a kneeboard to see if any good.
The problem with iPad mini, is that you need to have it close to the eyes in order to use it without constant refocus, e.g. to follow a descent path. This is not the case with an 10inch tablet.
And I have to say FF is gorgeous and clever with it. (I was an anti apple for years and I have to say iPad and now great, on board or on a sofa.)

LFMD, France

greg_mp wrote:

The problem with iPad mini, is that you need to have it close to the eyes in order to use it without constant refocus, e.g. to follow a descent path. This is not the case with an 10inch tablet.

I have my iPad mini yoke-mounted and I haven’t found refocusing a problem. But then, I use bifocal glasses when flying and that might help…

ESKC (Uppsala/Sundbro), Sweden

“Refocusing” probably means the screen’s a bit too small to display a complete approach plate in fully readable manner, so you have to move the plate up and down to switch from lateral to profile view ? That’s my experience with the Mini as well, but the 6 has a slightly larger screen which might make the difference.

My main beef with my iPad mini 4 is that it now struggles to run Garmin Pilot; SkyDemon’s fine, which tells me this is more due to lazy performance optimisation by Garmin, but I don’t think they care. So I’ll probably upgrade. The Watch 7 looks good too; I’m quite addicted to my Apple Watch 4, to the point that I’ve written a couple of personal apps just for my own use, but I’d like a slightly larger, always on screen as I age, and the blood O2 monitor apparently works well too.

EGTF, LFTF

I need to buy a new iPad Mini at some point, if only because mine is old enough to have slipped outside of ForeFlight update support. I don’t know whether to buy a recently superseded model as before (less expensive) or the new 6, so this discussion is useful to me. A friend is a manager for Apple and I might be able to get the employee discount on the 6, so that is another factor.

I have my Mini mounted on a RAM mount in the corner between the left side of the instrument panel and the aft, sideways facing part of the windshield. It’s pretty much a perfect location. There is an adjustable air vent in the windshield that blows directly on the back of the mount. The charging cable is routed in such a way that it’s almost invisible, and the unit remains at 100% charge in flight. The only time it overheats is when the plane is parked in the sun, meaning that the unit is not running GPS – on a warm day I think it would overheat when parked even if shut down completely. If I remember to unclip it when parked and put it somewhere out of the sun, no problem.

For optimum vision, I wear very short frame reading glasses at all times when flying, looking over them to fly the plane and through them to see the panel including the iPad Mini.

Last Edited by Silvaire at 15 Sep 07:50

I had the overheating issues more than once with my mini 3. But I guess the aged processor had to work 100% to keep up with the new software. In the beginning I used the iPad with a kneeboard, but later on I moved it to a yoke mount. I never had the overheat issue since I moved it to the yoke. I guess I have hot legs…

EBST, Belgium
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