The new iPad has been and gone, sporting a chunkier and heavier build than the iPad 2, which left some wondering: what’s with all the extra weight? However, it looks like Apple may be about to aid those conscious of extra grams in their bags, as rumours hot up about a potential iPad Mini (or iPad nano, if you prefer) arriving later this year. As the Amazon Kindle Fire steals the budget tablet show and with more small, cheap tablets on the horizon, such as the Google Nexus tablet, Apple may well want a bite of the, well, apple.
A new report has examined the prospects for an iPad Mini – and how it might contribute to the company’s bottom line, particularly with gamers and the educational market. According to analyst Ben A. Reitzes, the iPad Mini would not be a threat to Apple’s current domination with the New iPad, and is likely to be a favourite among gamers as well as educational institutes, particularly with the electronic textbooks introduced earlier this year. iPad Mini release date There’s not even an official sign from Apple that the iPad Mini/iPad nano is even in the works, so a release date for the tablet is even more up in the air.
Although if the rumours turn out to be true, we can expect Apple to start rolling out the iPad Mini very soon after a extraordinarily over-hyped launch event. According to a Digitimes source the iPad Mini/nano could start production in the third quarter of 2012. Analyst Shaw Wu says the “exact timing” for an iPad mini release date “is difficult to predict”, but said its launch is a “question of when, not if.” Pretty confident then, are we, Shaw? A report straight out of China suggests that key Apple manufactures Foxconn and Pegatron have started to receive orders for the new iPad mini. It goes on to say the factories will have 6 million units ready for a launch in Q3 of 2012.
When Apple announced its annual WWDC event running from June 11-15, which sold out in just two hours, there was some speculation that we could see the Cupertino firm announce the iPad mini there, but no new iPad broke cover at WWDC. iPad Mini price What’s the best tablet under £300? Apple is known for its extravagant products, launch events and pricing policies, but the iPad Mini may herald a new era for those who long for an Apple device, but simply can’t part with an arm and a leg to buy one. It’s thought that Apple’s idea behind the iPad nano is to tackle the budget end of the market, where the Amazon Kindle Fire is currently king, and a Digitimes source predicts it could land with a very reasonable sub £200 ($249-$299) price tag.