Apple's $299 iPad Mini Defies Steve Jobs with Summer Release [Rumor]
Rumors continue to swirl about Apple's potential release of an iPad mini.
Reports from Taiwan suggests that the miniature tablet is scheduled to market this summer. To compete with Windows 8 and Android mobile devices, the iPad mini is said to be competitively priced from $249 to $299.
The price would be half the cost of Apple's newly released iPad according to reports from Chinese web portal "NetEase." It would also put Apple in good position to seriously compete or dominate the small table market.
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The new iPad mini may be sporting a 7.85 inch touchscreen display with HD resolutions of 1024x768 pixels.
This would downplay previous rumors that the smaller iPad will sport a 5-inch high resolution (Retina) display. It was believed that resolution would be 1600x960 or 1280x960 pixels.
Previous reports from "The Korea Times" wrote that Samsung was shipping new PLS-based LCD technology for Apple's new iPad devices. Display quality would match Apple's previous two iPads and Apple plans to start shipping 6 million units at launch time.
Two Chinese production facilities were also rumored to be part of constructing the iPad minis. Foxconn, who is currently Apple's assembling plant, will be joined by another supply chain named Pegatron. Pegatron is also reportedly working together with Google on a new line of Android based tablets.
The concept of an iPad mini would make sense in competing for the lower end tablets market, but it may not fall in line with Apple's direction according to the company's late CEO Steve Jobs. Jobs continually dismissed the rumors and concept of a mini iPad. He labeled smaller tablets as "tweeners" and said that the device would not fare well against a smaller smartphone and the bigger iPad. Despite the claim, Amazon's Kindle Fire has found success in its marketplace. Though currently the lower-end tablets have not yet threatened iPad sales, Apple may be tempted to consider tapping into the market.
Analysts who spoke to the Computer World were quoted as saying that the smaller tablet would "crush the opposition." Currently the "Amazon Kindle Fire" is overtaking the market for lower end small tablets with its $199 price tag.
Speculations for an iPad mini started when Apple officials were seen presenting deigns for a smaller tablet back in February. The Wall Street Journal reported that it could simply be a testing design and nothing may come out of it. According to other sources, a prototype already exists and is in the Apple labs.
"What I do know is that they have one in the lab, a 7.85″ iPad that runs at 1024 x 768. And it's just like the 9.7-inch iPad shrunk down a little bit. The apps wouldn't need to be redesigned or recompiled to work on it - it's just the iPad smaller," cited tech blogger John Gruber from Daring Fireball.