iPad mini now being mass produced - report

Wall Street Journal states that Apple has started manufacturing its new tablet

Apple's newest worst kept secret, the iPad mini, is beginning to take shape...literally. A Wall Street Journal report indicates that mass production on the smaller tablet has already begun.

The iPad mini has yet to be officially acknowledged by Apple, but it's been widely reported that the tablet will come with a 7.85 inch screen (at a slightly lower resolution), making it easier to hold in one hand, and more importantly, cheaper for the mass consumer so that Apple can remain competitive with the attractive tablets from Google and Amazon. The entry-level Kindle Fire retails for just $159, whereas the current iPad costs $499.

While iPad held around 60 percent of the global tablet market last year, the influx of new, sleek and affordable offerings in the space is undoubtedly exerting pressure on Apple. IHS iSuppli forecasts that global tablet sales will jump 85 percent this year to 126.6 million units.

With the iPad mini rumored to be unveiled later this month, the tablet wars during this holiday season should be very interesting.

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Latest comments (8)

John Bye Lead Designer, Future Games of London5 years ago
Given they're charging $299 and up for the new 5th gen iPod Touch, I don't see how they're going to make an iPad Mini anywhere near competitive in pricing with the Nexus 7 and Kindle Fire. Surely it's going to cost twice as much as similar sized Android rivals?

Apple have never really shown any interest in competing on price or appealing to the low end of the market, most of their products are very expensive compared to similar products from other manufacturers. I'm sure it will still be a success, but it's hardly an answer to Google and Amazon.

Edited 1 times. Last edit by John Bye on 3rd October 2012 5:17pm

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Ged McMillan Retail Manager 5 years ago
The moulds for the accessories had been shown to retailers, prior to Digital Foundry's "Whatever happened to the the iPad mini?" article a fortnight ago.

:edit: Third party accessories, not Apple afaik.

Edited 1 times. Last edit by Ged McMillan on 3rd October 2012 6:25pm

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Hugo Dubs Interactive Designer 5 years ago
Does someone could explain why Apple is willing to produce a little ipad?
I see that phone screen tends to be biger and bigger while tablets are going smaller and smaller.
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Show all comments (8)
Greg Wilcox Creator, Destroy All Fanboys! 5 years ago
@Hugo: Because it'll sell to the sheep and new user who might want an Apple product if it's in their price range, that's why. Apple doesn't NEED to make this at all, but here it is. They want all ends of the market "cheap" to expensive, which is why the Mini has a lesser quality screen than their newer products.
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Tamir Ibrahim Programmer, Splash Damage5 years ago
I wouldn't say the need for a smaller tablet is to cater to sheep, Greg. Personally, I don't own a tab and if I was to buy one it wouldn't be an iPad or an iPad mini. But, it would be a tablet with a 7 - 8" screen. The large tabs are too large to comfortably hold in one hand and phone screens are too small to use for long periods or for watching movies. The 8" tab fulfils this niche perfectly and they are very light to boot.

From a purely personal perspective I do wish the Nexus 7 was an 8" screen tab, I would snap it up straight away then, 7" screen is just a little bit too small I think. Especially since the Nexus 7 is actually big enough to have an 8" screen, it's just got a thick border.
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Peter Broughton Recruitment Consultant, Aardvark Swift5 years ago
I would equally say that having an Apple product doesn't make you a sheep. If you have apple products already, it really doesn't make sense to buy a tablet of another brand that won't accept any of your films, songs, audiobooks or apps that you already bought and will go onto your brand new tablet as long as you stick to the same brand.

I wouldn't buy a non apple tablet. Why, because I have an iPhone. I bought the iPhone because it plays Sky Sports live for free as I'm a subscriber. When I bought it, Android phones were incapable of doing this. This means I didn't buy it 'cause I'm a sheep. I bought it because for me, it's secondary most important function was to let me watch Sky. Not many other phones did this. I bought it because of what it did. Not who made it.

I think their is a market for smaller more reasonably priced tablets. I want an iPad. My wife wants an iPad mini. The reason is purely price. She doesn't want to spend any more than £250 on a tablet. If they won't release one, she will buy a kindle fire even though she owns an iPod and an iPhone. That's one sale they'll lose by not releasing an iPad mini. I think there would be many more too.
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Fran Mulhern , Recruit3D5 years ago
The whole "only sheep buy apple" is a load of crap, give it up already. Frankly, only sheep complain that only sheep buy apple.

I see price point being an issue, too - I don't see where they can price it without it affecting the sales of their other devices. And the Nexus 7 is £150 - which is an absolute bargain. Android has really come on, and I think it's a real rival to iOS now.

Really interested to see what happens with this.
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Fran Mulhern , Recruit3D5 years ago
@ Hugo - the smaller form factor is perfect for reading, and still more than decent for web browsing, playing games etc.
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