Basics of the iPad mini’s Lightning-to-USB Camera Adaptor
The iPad mini doesn’t include a USB port or an SD memory card slot, which happen to be the most popular methods for getting pictures (and videos) from a digital camera onto a computer.
All the same, the iPad delivers a marvelous photo viewer. That’s why if you take a lot of pictures, you’ll probably need either Apple’s Lightning-to-USB Camera Adapter or Lightning-to-SD Card Camera Reader ($29 each). As a reminder, these two components, either of which plugs into the Lightning connector at the bottom of the iPad.
One sports a USB interface that you can use with the USB cable that came with your camera to download pictures. The other is an SD Card Reader that lets you insert the memory card that stores your pictures.
Though the official line from Apple is that this USB adapter is meant to work with the USB cable from your digital camera, we’ve seen old USB keyboards work with it — and even USB speakers, MIDI keyboards, and more. But don’t expect every USB device to be compatible: The power requirements of those devices (and their requisite software drivers) aren’t loaded on the iPad.
We only hope that despite this helpful accessory, Apple will get around to adding a USB and an SD slot, but it hasn’t happened yet.