It depends on what is most important to you. The Mini (which I have) has a portablitity and holdability advantage. I do a lot of reading and like the holdability feature. The Maxi (which my wife has) has a sharper and larger display.
Neither of us would trade with the other. But, when Apple announces a retina Mini, I will upgrade.
First, I think the size of the ipad is very individual. Some love the idea of 'put a mini in your pocket and go.' Others want to hang out somewhere and read more easily, watch movies/tv, etc. among other things, on a bigger screen. If you are near an Apple store, you might want to take a trip there and check out what your preference might be.
If money is an issue, as it is for many students or parents with students in college, consider looking in the Apple refurbished store. And this is because more important than the physical size of the ipad, is the AMOUNT OF SPACE you will buy vs. how much space you will end up needing as a college student.
My son got his ipad 2 refurb in the Apple refurb store before he started his junior year in college last year. He thought 32 gb would be more than enough, but some time during the school year, he used about 50 gb of his ipad 2 64 gb which was the way to go. He has to have apps and space for required financial newspapers, pdf's for class, text books, and of course, movies, tv shows, and music, and all that goes with it - netflix, hbo go, mlb, nfl, and other sports apps... The list goes on.
Following is a little more detail from a post I responded to this past week.
PLEASE NOTE - Whatever you decide - I read about an app last year and my son got it. It allows him to use anything on his imac (in his dorm) on his ipad and it works anywhere on campus. For example. if he's working on a paper on MS Word or Excel on his imac, and he's somewhere else on campus, he can actually work on his paper in its current program, save changes, etc., so he doesn't have to deal with many of the ios apps that sometimes change format and fonts in translation from mac/pc to ipad. wherever he is because pretty much all campuses have wireless. (It works everywhere for him on his big campus except in one classroom.)
However, when I was checking for updates on it the other day, I found one that sounds better than Splashtop. It's now the top paid app in the business in the app store, reviews are great, and for anywhere access does not require a cellular ipad. It's called Jump Desktop and it works with macs and pcs with your ipad.
Hope this helps and enjoy college!
I forgot to mention the amount of space I need...should I get a 16GB or 32GB
I want to use this throughout the whole 4 years of college
I'll mainly be using it for:
note taking apps
anything else that i'll need related to school classes.
i'll probably put a few of my favorite apps on it too no more than 5 tops
no photo taking and no music will be on it either
I posted about how much space I think you will need in my reply yesterday.
Also, given all the work/reading you will so as a student, I now strongly suggest you buy the ipad retina. It will be much easier on your eyes. And I think that once you're in school you're going to find many apps and other uses for the ipad that you might not be very aware of. For example, if you'll have a dorm mate who is watching something on a tv in your dorm room, and you have netflix in your family at home, you can use it too, in your dorm on an ipad or laptop. Apps take up space and as they are updated after the ios is updated, each app will take up more space.
I suggest you get a minimum of 32 gb and strongly suggest the 64 gb if you can afford it. A new ipad retina 16 gb costs $499.00, 32 gb is $599.00 and a 64 gb is $699.00. If you live in USA, you will get a $50.00 app card as a college student. I'm not sure if other countries do this. If you buy instead at the Apple refurbished store, a 64 gb. is only $80.00 more than a new 16 gb. You don't get the $50.00 app card, though.
It comes with a new front and back cover, a brand new battery, and a full one year warranty. It is packaged exactly as a new ipad, shipping is free, and fast. You would order it with your college e-mail address.
Just make sure you bring your laptop to school for your work and to sync your ipad.
Also, check with your school store to see if there are any deals. Both of our sons' colleges are always emailing laptop, etc. deals, MS Office for students, etc.
Anyway, hopefully more people will post with their opinions as you weigh your options.
Whatever you decide, enjoy what you buy and of couse, enjoy college.
Hope this helps.
I don't disagree with appleuser above. However, the amount of storage needed is a function of what it will be used for.
Things like movies require a lot of space. Books do not. As an example, I currently have 14 books on my Mini in the Kindle app and they (incuding the app itself) are using 96 MB of storage space. A new book hardly moves the storage needle (amazing).
I also have multiple dictionaries (three languages) and these require between 494 MB (Oxford Dictionary of English) to 25 MB for a really nice Arabic-English dictionary and 59 MB for an Arabic-English-Arabic dictionary.
Music can demand storage space. I have about 25 albums (on my iPhone) and they use 2.1 GB.
If you will have enormous speadsheets, this could require a lot of storage space.
Hi, I use iPads for school, my school decided we were gonna get ipads and I rather liked it.
I had a 16GB, and while it seems like a lot of space, it really isn't. One year of high school, I had to pick and choose what I wanted to keep. I'd recommend the 32 just because some things can gain size after you've used them for a little while.
Also, there's a few apps I like for note taking. If you're willing to write them out by hand, I'd recommend Remarks, or Notability. Those two are great, and I'd also recommend you buying a stylus, because it makes transitioning into writing with your finger a bit better, if you're willing to do that.
And about the books, I had a Geometry book last year that took up a GB, so keep that in mind. (never used it, but it was a GB).
With Remarks and Notability, I found it easier to link my Google Drive account, Notability automatically uploads to Google Drive so you don't lose anything, but Remarks you have to do manually.
Hope this helped (and I'm sorry if it's a bit late haha)