The New iPad only launched back in March, but that doesn’t stop Apple fans from getting excited about the possibility of a redesigned – and crucially, smaller – iPad. As usual, there’s a constant stream of rumours and speculation about which Apple products are coming next and some believe the rumoured 7.85in iPad will arrive with the next-generation iPhone in September. Everyone’s talking about the iPad mini despite Apple having said nothing on the matter.
New iPad mini release date
Apple looks set to release its much-rumoured iPad mini in October, after what appears to be a sanctioned ‘leak’ from the company. The latest dates suggest that Apple will send out invited for an iPad mini event on 10 October, with the event rumoured to take place on 17 October and a release date of 2 November.
iPad mini leaked images
In October, some convincing images showed what appears to be an iPad mini with a Black & Slate backplate.
Following the back plate images, photographs of an iPad mini dummy model cropped up on Twitter.
In September, new photographs showing an alleged iPad mini back casing were published on the web, and in October, a video of an iPad mini mockup was released from Japan.
At the IFA trade show in Berlin, photographs of what appears to be an iPad mini die cast mold also surfaced on the internet.
Fuelling the rumours of the product and grabbing the attention of Apple followers are the alleged leaked images of the iPad mini from China.
iPad mini rumours
An analyst has said that the iPad mini is now in “full production”, and expects that Apple will sell 8 million of the tablets within its first quarter. Foxconn and Pegatron are said to be manufacturing the device.
The Wall Street Journal claims that Apple has ordered more than 10 million iPad minis for quarter four 2012.
Rumours pointed to Apple announcing an iPad mini by October but is Apple really likely to launch a smaller version of the iPad? Would a 7in model even be necessary? With the iOS devices the iPhone, small enough to fit in your pocket, and the iPad, competent enough to run most software, where is the need for an in-between model which would compromise on both areas? Read: Does Apple really need a 7in iPad?
Steve Jobs didn’t think that a smaller iPad was a good idea but this may be part of Apple CEO Tim Cook’s plan to continue pushing forward the company as late CEO Steve Jobs did. However, during the Apple v Samsung trial in August, it was revealed that Steve Jobs was ‘receptive’ to a 7in iPad.
There are some leaked images floating around that appear to be of the new iPad mini, and if they are, it appears that the iPad mini will not have a camera. Other reports suggest that the iPad mini could be as thin as an iPod touch, with small side bezels, separate volume buttons and a microphone on the back.
As time has progressed the images have become more convincing, and this photograph of an internal dock lead is the first image both ourselves (and the experts at iFixiIt) seem to think is a genuine internal part from an iPad mini.
Analyst Brian White thinks that an iPad mini would be a cheaper and more convenient alternative for educators, children and price-sensitive consumers. He would expect the mid-sized tablet to cannibalise Apple’s current iPad, but claims, perhaps rightly, that surely it would be better for Apple to do this themselves rather than be shot down by a competitor. Read: Why small tablets will dominate the tablet market.
Analysts agree that a smaller iPad is probably motivated by competition and the thought of a missed opportunity. Indeed, it may be, if an analyst’s prediction that Apple could sell 40 million iPad minis within a year is correct.
As our electronic age concentrates on making everything, lighter, smaller, thinner, faster and as cheap as possible, it seems fair enough to reason that a smaller iPad would be the way forward, especially with so many competitors already with 7in tablets on the market.
In July, Apple snapped up AuthenTec, and a new SEC filing suggests that the speedy decision to buy the company may have been to get its fingerprint scanners into the iPad mini and iPhone 5.
Reports suggested that the iPad mini’s display will have ITO film coating.
Analysts are expecting that the release of an iPad mini in September could result in instant success with it overtaking sales of the larger model by Christmas.
Fuelling the rumours of the product and grabbing the attention of Apple followers are the alleged leaked images of the iPad mini from China. But whenever a rumour arises, so do images to match and no one knows whether these are the real deal.
Apple has even hinted at the release of a new iPad this spring confirming there will be a “transition” where Tim Cook will bring new products he is “super happy” about to the public. Evidence of a 12 September iPhone 5 and iPad mini launch has emerged, backed up by top publications such as Bloomberg, Reuters and The New York Times.
If Apple took the initiative to launch the smaller, in-between model, some say they could guarantee a spot at the top of their game, dominating the tablet market until 2016.
So, why not?