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Breaking Down Apple’s Supposed Plans to Introduce an iPad Mini

by on July 10th, 2012

Rumours of an iPad mini to be released by Apple have surfaced, with sources spilling their beans to news sources such as the Wall Street Journal and Bloomberg and earlier to iMoreNow, the venerable John Gruber from Daring Fireball is throwing his hat into the iPad mini ring as he also notes he has heard from “Cupertino-area little birdies” about a new iPad size coming. Gruber has provided a breakdown of what to expect from Apple should an iPad mini come to fruition. It’s a long read, but a good one:

A few months ago, when these 7.85-inch iPad rumors started heating up and speculation began on whether it would actually be feasible, usability-wise, to run existing iPad apps on such a display, my pal Craig Hockenberry showed me a simple trick.

Ends up a 7.85-inch iPad display would be about as tall, physically, as the current 9.7-inch iPad display is wide. Here’s the math: 1024 pixels divided by 163 pixels per inch = 6.28 inches for the purported iPad Mini height; 768 pixels divided by 132 pixels per inch = 5.8 inches for the current iPad width. Not exact but close — the rumored iPad Mini would actually be half an inch taller than the existing iPad is wide.

So, here’s how you can make a poor man’s iPad Mini simulator: take a screenshot on your iPad, then view the screenshot on the iPad but rotate the device. This shrinks the screenshot to fit — almost exactly the same reduction in size as this purported iPad Mini.

Apple has yet to enter the lower cost tablet market as they haven’t had the need to–they just making too much money from the iPad as it is. However, its competitors have stepped up and more recently Google with their Nexus 7, which as received nothing but positive reviews.

If Apple was to release an iPad Mini, I would say price would be one of the biggest factors, and right now people are glued to the $200 or so pricepoint for a 7-8 inch tablet. Apple has a tremendous supply chain that has economies of scale so it wouldn’t be an issue to produce a lower cost device.

Below is a comparison of tablet screen sizes, including the rumoured iPad Mini (created by @trojankitten):

The question remains though about profit margin on such a device. Go for the jugular and price below competitors, match their prices, or stick to the premium model and price it just slightly higher at $250?

Do we really need a smaller iPad? It really depends on the situation. Reading for long periods with the iPad can be tiresome because it’s heavier than my Kindle. But for surfing the web, nothing beats the current 9.7 inch screen size.

Definitely something to add to Pocket. Check out the full article here.

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