updated 03:50 pm EST, Tue November 12, 2013
Performance under iPad Air despite A7 chip
Early benchmarks of the Retina iPad mini are placing the tablet at about the speed of the iPhone 5s. GeekBench data rates the Mini at 1.29GHz, just shy of the 1.3GHz of the 5s. Both devices are slower than the iPad Air, which has previously been clocked at 1.39GHz.
It's uncertain why the Mini would be slower than the Air or the 5s, given that all three use the same A7 processor. Apple may have made adjustments to reflect the heat and power consumption limits of the three devices; the Mini, for instance, presumably has a smaller battery than the Air, requiring a slower processor to maintain a 10-hour lifespan. Reviewers have sometimes criticized the battery life of the 5s, which is generally equal or even inferior to that of the iPhone 5.