Car and Motorcycle Mounts for the Apple iPad Mini 4

An excellent consideration for an Apple iPad Mini 4Release September 9, 2015, the Apple iPad Mini 4 is Apple’s latest generation in their very successful mid-size tablet category.  The iPad Mini 4 has some nice performance improvements versus the Mini 3.  The 1.5 GHz dual-core processor is 30% faster than the prior model.  The graphics processor got a 60% performance boost.  The back camera is better too at 8 MP versus prior versions at 5 MP.  The front camera, typically used for Facetime retains the same 1.2 MP still and at 720p on video.  The Wi-Fi supports some new protocols and now supports up to 860 Mbps which can potentially be more than your wireless router can push (let alone your internet provider).  Pricing varies depending upon memory and connectivity options.

Let’s jump to the mount discussion.  Although many might be led to believe that the Apple iPad Mini 4 is the same size as prior generations, it’s not.  The physical size of the Apple iPad Mini 4 is 8 by 5.30 by 0.24 inches.  That’s a little longer than previous generations and a little less thick.  The iPad Mini 3 came in at 7.87 x 5.3 x .29 inches.  I offer these key metrics because the size and weight is important in choosing your mount.  This means that if you have a previous generation of iPad Mini and were using a universal cradle mount, it’s probably going to fit the iPad Mini 4.  If you have a custom mount, where the tablet snaps into a custom cradle, it might not fit.  The bit of added length might be enough to make a difference where it simply is too large for the custom cradle.

As always, I recommend buying a good protective case or skin for your new tablet.  You just paid a lot of money for your Apple iPad Mini 4.  Dropping this tablet is going to be a financial disaster so buy a good case.  The Otterbox line is excellent and I have a lot of experience with their top of the line Defender model.  I have dropped my iPhone on concrete and ceramic and never had a single issue.  Buy a good case.  It’s important that you don’t break the glass because that’s going to be expensive to fix.

So on with the mount discussion.

There are many locations that may prove suitable for your device.  You first need to figure out what you plan to use it for.  Many like to use their Apple iPad Mini 4 for entertaining the kids.  If that’s the case, the best location for your Mini is the headrest as it puts your tablet far enough away so your kids can’t grab it yet close enough so that they can comfortably view it.  The Mini is great for playing cartoons and videos.  The Arkon Centered Headrest Mount fits the iPad Mini with or without a case or skin.  This mount is different from other headrest mounts because it attaches to two headrest posts then extends into the middle between your seats.  This means two or more passengers int he backseat can watch the action.

If wanting to use your Apple iPad Mini 4 for navigation and have the cellular feature, consider using Waze as your app.  Take a look at our Waze review.  The iPad Mini 4 is small enough so that you can potentially attach it to your windshield using a suction mount and not block a substantial part of your view.  Attaching to your windshield is legal is most states, but there’s a few that don’t allow it so check your local laws before buying a windshield mount.  An article about those states not allowing it can be found here.

As depicted in the photo that accompanies this article, the Arkon Extension Suction Cup Mount is a good mount to use in your car or truck.  The metal arm extends up to 18 inches and is quite rigid while driving.  The included cradle opens to over 7 inches so a case or skin will fit well.  The cradle will swivel into landscape or portrait mode.  I tend to like landscape mode when using the tablet as a GPS but it works equally as well in portrait.

A more recent introduction to the mounting world is the CD Player mount.  Although they are standard in almost all cars these days, it’s seldom used because of the integration of smartphones with the audio system of most current vehicles.  So if your CD player is collecting dust like mine, why not use it as a mount point for your iPad Mini 4?   The Satechi Universal Tablet CD Slot Mount fits the Mini real well.  These mounts include a cradle that aaccommodates tablets up to 7.68 inch wide. Since the iPad Mini 4 is 5.3 inches wide, it will fit with or without a case or skin.

On the motorcycle, we often look to RAM Mounts for a good solution.  They offer a few universal cradles to consider.  Very popular is the RAM X-Grip series.  The RAM Motorcycle Mount with X-Grip IV Cradle features an expandable cradle that opens up to 5.75 inches.  The all metal mount will fit handlebars up to 1.25 inches diameter.  All components come with a lifetime warranty.