As others have pointed out, the colors on the mini aren't as saturated as on the full-size iPad. Side by side, the difference is quite noticeable. By itself, it's easy to forget and hasn't really impacted my enjoyment. But the one place where I can really tell the difference is looking at icons on the home screen.
One thing that surprised me is that the mini has become my primary video-viewing device. And in that way, I've actually gone bigger from my iPhone, on which I used to watch TV shows and movies while doing my morning exercise. The full-size iPad was always too big to precariously perch on my stationary bike's small ledge at the bottom of the display unit. The mini fits perfectly and lets me watch on a larger screen.
In short, the switch from big iPad to little after three and half years has been relatively painless. In most ways, I've found the diminutive tablet more portable, easier to hold, and capable of handing what I want from an iPad. But unless other magazines adopt the adjustable font size options of pubs like The New Yorker — or Apple includes a coupon for LASIK surgery in every box — aging eyes might take offense. Yet Apple has already begun to address this with Dynamic Type in iOS 7, which lets you adjust your preferred reading size system-wide, but only for those apps that support it.
Sign up for CIO Asia eNewsletters.