Apple’s all new iPad Mini is the cutest, most versatile, most powerful mini-tablet ever

The smallest iPad just got its biggest upgrade. I’ll be honest, I didn’t think the iPad Mini was really that much of a big deal… that was until Tim Cook mentioned how its compact size made it perfect for doctors and scientists to carry around in their lab coats, for pilots to strap to their thighs while flying, and just for anyone who wanted an iPad experience in a more pocketable form factor. The new iPad Mini feels like a watershed moment for the mini-tablet market, as Apple literally pushed everything it had into it. It now comes with a modern flat-edge design, an ultrawide camera on the front, TouchID in the power button, support for Apple Pencil, USB-C, and 5G, making it an absolute behemoth even for its size.

With an 8.3-inch Liquid Retina screen, the iPad Mini is like a scaled-down version of the iPad Air. It’s just right for your palm, and will fit easily into generously designed pockets. And if you’ve got yourself the 2nd Gen Apple Pencil, you can easily snap it to the side of the iPad Mini the way you would on an iPad Pro. Although judging by the image below, the pencil and tablet are now almost the same height – I kinda like it.

The new iPad Mini sports the same uniform bezel design seen in this year’s iPad Air lineups, and just like in the iPad Air, the Mini comes with TouchID built right into the power button. That means being able to securely lock/unlock your iPad, as well as use your biometrics to approve app installs and pay for stuff online.

Perhaps the biggest upgrade to the iPad Mini (apart from its support for the Pencil) is the USB-C port on the bottom. Ditching the Lightning port from the previous version, the latest iPad Mini embraces the power and versatility of USB-C. Sure, that means faster charging, but when you stop to think about all the places an iPad Mini would be useful, a USB-C port just makes a lot more sense. You could potentially connect the iPad Mini to a host of devices, from a DSLR to an Ultrasound Camera… encapsulating perfectly how the iPad Mini can transition from a creative’s power tool to a doctor or specialist’s handheld computer.

The new iPad Mini also comes with 5G cellular, practically making it a perfect hybrid between the iPad and iPhone, and comes with WiFi 6 for even better wireless connectivity. It’s powered by the A15 Bionic chip, sports 12MP cameras on both the front and the back, comes in 4 colors, and starts at $499. Pretty impressive for a device that’s just 8.3-inches diagonally.

Designer: Apple

The JingPad A1 is a Feature-packed, Flagship Level… Linux Tablet?!

An 11″, 2K, 4:3 AMOLED touchscreen. A 1.8GHz 8-core ARM SoC. 8GB of RAM. 256GB of storage. USB-C. An included stylus. Sounds like an awesome tablet right? But the thing that makes the JingPad A1 truly special is that it’s running JingOS, a Linux-based operating system.

The idea is simple – to have access to Linux applications in a slim, light, and powerful tablet. The JingPad is the first hardware product from a company called JingLing. They actually started with the operating system first – a smart move, considering they’re sourcing the hardware components anyway. In fact, you can download JingOS right now. The OS supports multitouch, has basic apps and widgets, and has a desktop mode similar to Samsung’s DeX. Arguably the most important feature of JingOS is that it can run Android apps, although it doesn’t seem like you can simply sideload them. JingLing will have a dedicated app store for Android apps.

As I said, the JingPad A1 comes with a stylus. But it also has an optional keyboard and trackpad accessory. I like the integrated kickstand. That’s a neat implementation.

Here’s the JingPad A1 pitch video:

And here’s a brief demo of the tablet running popular Linux apps:

The touch response seems a bit iffy, but it looks like a polished product. If they can nail the compatibility with Android apps, I think JingLing has a winner in their hands. Pledge at least $549 (USD) on Indiegogo to get the JingPad A1 with the stylus. Pledge at least $699 and you get the keyboard too.

This Nintendo Switch 2 foldable concept makes it the ultimate Android gaming tablet

Nintendo Switch 2 Foldable Android Gaming Tablet

Think of it as the natural successor to the Nintendo Switch, and the clamshell-style Nintendo DS before it.

Sure, Nintendo’s probably going to announce the Switch Pro console very soon, but entertain the idea of a world where the Switch isn’t just a console, it’s an all-in-one tablet and gaming device. Designed by Alessandro Cesa and Nicola Pizzato, this conceptual Nintendo Switch 2 device makes a great case for how the company can fill a pretty big void in the gaming tablet market. The Nintendo Switch 2 comes with a dual-hinge folding mechanism (sort of like the Microsoft Duo) that creates a gap in between the two folding components… a gap wide enough to dock the Switch’s joy-cons. Moreover, the Switch 2 even sports a sprawling folding display that turns it into a full-size tablet when open. You could hold it as you would a Nintendo DS, or open it out and play games on a larger screen with the joy-cons in each hand, just like you would with a Nintendo Switch.

Nintendo Switch 2 Foldable Android Gaming Tablet

We all know that the Switch runs on a customized version of Android already, which makes it really easy for the Switch 2 to be more than just a gaming device. The large touchscreen display is perfect for everything from playing Animal Crossing to watching content on Netflix and YouTube. The joy-cons, which sit inside the tablet like bookmarks, can easily be removed when needed, and used as either game-controllers, or remote controls. The fact that they sit INSIDE the Switch would probably indicate that they charge wirelessly, using a reverse wireless charging technology built into the tablet.

Nintendo Switch 2 Foldable Android Gaming Tablet

Nintendo Switch 2 Foldable Android Gaming Tablet

The Switch 2 tablet and controllers take on a rather familiar design, with flat edges just like the iPad. The joy-cons sport battery indicators on the side, and have a unique design where the main buttons and the analog thumbsticks sit below the controller’s upper surface, protecting the screen from getting scratched or damaged when shut.

Nintendo Switch 2 Foldable Android Gaming Tablet

To expand its tablet functionality, the Switch 2 even comes with its own docked stylus, pitting it against the iPad Pro as a serious gaming and productivity device. The stylus docks in on the right side of the tablet, while the left comes with a slot for gaming cartridges, keeping the analog appeal of a gaming console very much alive!

Nintendo Switch 2 Foldable Android Gaming Tablet

Nintendo Switch 2 Foldable Android Gaming Tablet

Nintendo Switch 2 Foldable Android Gaming Tablet

That hinge is perhaps one of the most interesting details on the Switch 2. It folds the screen with a much broader curvature, so you’re not left with that godforsaken crease when you open it up. The folded version of the tablet also creates a perfect gap to dock the joy-cons. The Switch 2 also comes with a single-lens camera, a 3.5mm jack, and a USB-C port for charging it or hooking it to a variety of other devices. The designers even created a two-part case for the Switch 2 concept, with iPad-style foldable panels that allow it to dock at an angle as you play games or browse the internet on it!

Designers: Alessandro Cesa & Nicola Pizzato

Nintendo Switch 2 Foldable Android Gaming Tablet

Nintendo Switch 2 Foldable Android Gaming Tablet

Nintendo Switch 2 Foldable Android Gaming Tablet

Nintendo Switch 2 Foldable Android Gaming Tablet

Radical Samsung Galaxy Z Fold Tab patent shows a two-part folding screen + magnetic S-Pen docking area

It’s slowly becoming pretty clear that Samsung wants to be the dominant player in the foldables market. We’ve seen Motorola, Xiaomi, Huawei, Royole, and even the oddball TCL try their hands at folding devices, but none of them have invested the amount of time and effort as Samsung has. Based on a patent filing uncovered by LetsoGoDigital and rendered by Sarang Sheth, here’s a look at the Galaxy Z Fold Tab, a Note-style smartphone with 2 hinges and a nifty ‘crawl-space’ to dock and charge your S-Pen. The Z Fold Tab hopes to form a third device in Samsung’s line-up alongside the Galaxy Z Fold 3 and the Galaxy Z Flip 3, which are set to launch this year – in effect consolidating Samsung’s position in a questionable yet rather interesting foldable-devices market.

The Z Fold Tab concept takes on the avatar of a folding device with an outward screen. However, unlike the Huawei Mate X or any of Royole’s Flexpai devices, the Z Fold Tab comes with two hinges on its massive screen, creating a novel folding format that has a rather interesting set of pros as well as cons. In its closed mode, the Z Fold Tab can obviously be used as a regular smartphone (albeit being slightly thicker) with a waterfall display on both left and right edges thanks to the folding screens (this obscures the volume and power buttons, but those could easily be translated to the screen via force-touch like in the Vivo Apex 2019). However, unfold the screens on either side and you have yourself a larger tablet. The obvious cons are that instead of one crease running across the screen, you’re now faced with TWO creases, however, given how we consume content and the amount of time we spend looking at centrally aligned elements, this format oddly works, because the two creases sit on the sides of the screen rather than along the center.

The foldable design comes with a unique detail. The two halves leave a distinct gap when folded completely, solving two purposes – the gap exposes the main camera lenses, enabling you to take photos and videos without worrying about unfolding your phone; and the gap even acts as a safe space to magnetically dock your S-Pen. Unlike previous Note devices that came with hollow slots that allowed you to slide an S-Pen into the phone, the Z Fold Tab lets the S-Pen dock outside, almost like the iPad Pro. The magnetic dock charges the S-Pen while that comfy gap prevents the pen from accidentally sliding out or getting lost.

The Galaxy Z Fold Tab is not unlike the Z Fold 3 concept we featured last year, however, its key difference is that the two-part hinges don’t overlap to form a 3-layered device. Even when folded, the Z Fold Tablet still remains relatively slim by foldable standards.

For now, however, the Z Fold Tab exists only in conceptual form, protected by an international patent filed by Samsung. The Korean consumer-tech giant is slated to host its annual Galaxy Unpacked event in August this year, although according to analysts and experts, we’re probably only going to see the Z Fold 3 and the Z Flip 3 devices this year along with the usual suspects. According to LetsGoDigital, Samsung may have this under wraps until 2022.

Designer/Visualizer: Sarang Sheth for LetsGoDigital

This concept was first published on LetsGoDigital. Click here to view the original piece.

Lenovo’s YOGA Pad Pro tablet comes with its own stand and can double up as an external monitor

The common saying “If you can’t beat ’em, join ’em” really doesn’t work in the tablet industry. Apple’s successfully left every Android and Windows tablet in the dust with its ridiculously powerful iPad Pro, so the only way to really stand out in the tablet market is to do something the iPad really can’t… Someone at Lenovo seems to have figured that out early.

Lenovo’s new YOGA Pad Pro tries to stand out by not copying the iPad. While the iPad Pro is a pretty powerful machine that Apple often touts as a laptop replacement, the YOGA Pad Pro takes up the role of being a laptop accompaniment. With its own built-in kickstand and an integrated Micro HDMI port, the Lenovo YOGA Pad Pro is the perfect sidekick to your laptop. Make no mistake, it’s a pretty neat Android tablet on its own, but it manages to do a good job at the one thing the iPad can’t do – acting as a neat HDMI external monitor. Plug the YOGA Pad Pro into any device like your laptop, Nintendo Switch, or even your PlayStation or Xbox and you’ve got yourself a nice 13-inch touchscreen that you can prop up at any angle, hang on a hook, or carry around with you anywhere.

On the hardware front, the YOGA Pad Pro comes powered by a Qualcomm Snapdragon 870 processor, with 8GB of RAM and up to 256GB of internal storage. While that absolutely pales in comparison to the 2021 iPad Pro with the M1 chip, it’s really an ‘apples to oranges’ sort of deal (no pun intended). The Lenovo YOGA Pad Pro isn’t trying to replace a laptop, it’s trying to augment it. The 13-inch screen is larger than the one found on the iPad, but then again, it’s perfect for pairing with a Windows desktop or laptop. It’s even great for watching movies or playing games, thanks to the presence of four JBL speakers on every corner of the tablet… Plus that built-in kickstand proves incredibly useful when you want to prop the tablet on your workspace, kitchen counter, or even hang it on a wall! The YOGA Pad Pro is currently available for pre-order in China with a pretty commendable price tag of $515 – Lenovo is yet to announce a worldwide rollout.

Designer: Lenovo

iPad Pro 2021 with a bezel-less design would have been the perfect showstopper at the Apple Spring Loaded event!

Apple Spring Loaded 2021 event blew us all away, and Apple fans are so eager to experience the new products announced at the event. While the task of reinventing a well-designed product line every year seems like a herculean task, the team at Apple has managed to keep its fan satisfied with most of its releases, and with the M1 chip finally making its debut in the iPad Pro, the iPad is easily the most powerful tablet in the world.

For those of us who were hoping for a more bezel-less experience, this concept by Lester John Antiller is here for you! The M1 really unleashes the tablet’s potential, giving it incredible storage, transfer, and read/write abilities… or as Apple calls it, the most powerful chip on an iPad. The M1, apart from being a productive beast, also allows the iPad to have 5G capabilities, and even up to 2 Terabytes of storage… let’s see Microsoft’s Surface match that! Nothing much changes on the form front. The iPad Pro’s design is in a place where it doesn’t need to refine its exterior design. but how we wish it they would! A bezel-less design is all that is needed to take that ‘piece of magical glass’ to a revolutionary new level!

The iPad Pro still retains its last year’s camera module on the back, albeit with better computational photography thanks to the M1 chip. The camera on the front, however, sports an ultrawide-angle lens that captures more within the frame. Apple even showcased Center Stage, their new feature that uses machine learning to have that ultrawide camera zoom in on subjects and follow them around as they move, panning the camera while the iPad stays stationary. How the minimal front-facing cameras will impact the face recognition technology in this concept remains to be seen, but that is the beauty of a conceptual design. It helps us imagine the next big thing, inspire us, and help us achieve that target. So Apple, we have set our next expectations and we hope you are listening!

Designer: Lester John Antiller

This WFH setup is our dream workstation, including everything from virtual reality to detachable screens!

Now that we’ve had a taste of what working from home feels like, we’re all noticing the ways our work setups can be improved. It might be that your desk is too short or that your wires desperately need some organizing. No matter what you do, your workspace should feel comfortable and accessible so that you can move through the workday as smoothly as possible. After one year of intermittently working from home, Lucas Couto dreamed up his ideal WFH setup and it’s safe to say, we all want in.

What appears as a simple computer desk setup turns out to be so much more. For starters, Couto’s workstation setup, “Future of Work,” features a retractable display screen that detaches into a foldable tablet/laptop. The simple OS desktop functions as the workstation base, where files can be created and stored. Then, when Couto needs a tablet or laptop for easy portability, the same files will be made available on the go.

In addition to the desktop’s detachable screen, Couto’s design features another tablet that can attach itself to the desktop for an extended display, offering quick file sharing and supplemental portability. Finally, Couto’s “Future of Work” setup comes equipped with VR compatibility, providing a headset that turns into a dashboard where all of the work station’s appliances are connected. The integration of VR allows for seamless file transferring between devices, like sharing CAD models between devices and other file formats.

Nowadays, it’s important for the technology we use to cater to our needs, from getting stuff done for work to using it at our leisure. When technology doesn’t flow the way we need it to, it can feel like our whole workday has been derailed. Couto’s “Future of Work” conceptual design realizes the ultimate cohesive work setup through multiple device connectivity for a smooth workflow, convenient portability for busier days, and integrative VR assistance for intuitive file transferring.

Designer: Lucas Couto

Following multiple ideations, Couto conceptualized the WFH setup of his dreams.

Following a year’s worth of intermittently working from home, Couto designed a WFH station that includes multiple device sharing platforms and seamless file transferring.

Hinging on portability and accessibility, Couto’s WFH system includes a tablet that transforms into a laptop.

Featuring retractable screens that turn into standalone tablets, Couto’s WFH setup is designed for convenience.

After working on the tablet, it can then be transferred to the desktop’s screen just by dragging your fingers.

By incorporating a supplemental tablet, the desktop’s display screen can nearly double in size.

By including a VR headset, Couto makes it easy to search through his dashboard and organize his work across multiple device platforms.

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