Back in September, some early adopters of Apple’s iPad mini 6 took issue with the device’s screen and it’s so-called “jelly scrolling.” That unorthodox term refers to the phenomenon where one half of the screen refreshes at a noticeably different speed to the other, creating a slightly unsettling wobble effect.
It’s hard to describe if you haven’t seen it, but this slow-motion video from The Verge’s Dieter Bohn captures the effect in action:
Here is is slow-mo video of scrolling on the iPad Min i slowed down EVEN MORE in a frame-by-frame step through. Notice how the right moves up faster than the left.In normal usage you barely see it, but every now and then it become noticeable. In landscape it goes away entirely pic.twitter.com/iq9LGJzsDISeptember 22, 2021
Apple would later contend that this isn’t a problem and claim that the apparent defect is in fact something that exists in all LED screens.
That defense has not proved enough for everyone, and now there’s a class action lawsuit underway to try and force the issue.
As MacRumors (opens in new tab) reports, the suit (opens in new tab) filed by Christopher Bryan of Colorado claims that the iPad mini 6’s display “bends, warps, blurs and obscures text and images rendering the Device unusable.” It adds that users have “reported motion sickness, nausea, vomiting and migraines while using the Device due to the Defect,” citing this forum discussion on MacRumors (opens in new tab) as evidence.
The suit claims that despite Apple’s claims that this is a problem on all LED displays, it isn’t prominent on the 2020 iPad Air. It then cites an iFixIt teardown video, embedded below, as evidence that the defect is present by design rather than inevitability thanks to the different orientation of the controller board (it’s vertical in the mini, but horizontal in the Air).
“Apple has continued to market the Device without disclosing the nature of the Defect, including in its commercials, advertisements, and packaging,” the suit continues. “Instead, Apple has concealed the Defect, opting instead to market the Devices as capable of enabling the consumer to read, play games, and write despite the fact that each of these functions and features are hampered by the Defect.”
The suit is ultimately seeking unspecified damages for anybody who bought the iPad mini 6 in the United States, but there’s a long way to go before it can proceed. Class action lawsuits have a habit of running out of steam long before they come to a resolution in the courts, although not always: Last year Apple agreed to pay out $95 million to settle a class action suit (opens in new tab) focused on AppleCare customers being given refurbished devices rather than new ones.
Despite this reported issue we believe the iPad mini 6 is still one of the best iPads and one of the best tablets for the money because of its overall performance, compact design and Apple Pencil support. We'll report back when there are further developments.