Apple has quietly launched the iPad mini with Retina Display in its online Apple Store at midnight Pacific Time, November 12. This came as a surprise move, although some voices had whispered that the highly anticipated iPad mini would reach stores today.
When Apple introduced the 7.9-inch tablet, it mentioned no availability date, but since then numerous reports have been highlighting severe supply constraints due to Retina display manufacturing issues at Sharp, the main supplier of panels for the iPad mini.
Early in the morning, however, Apple published a press release highlighting the incredible consumer response for the iPad Air.
“The response to iPad Air has been incredible, and we’re excited for customers to experience the new iPad mini with Retina display,” said Philip Schiller, Apple’s senior vice president of Worldwide Marketing. “We think customers will love both of these thin, light, powerful new iPads, and we’re working hard to get as many as we can in the hands of our customers.”
Although the Retina iPad mini is currently only available in the online store – ships in 3 business days – the press release notes that the device will be available through the in-store Personal Pickup mechanism, which allows customers to check stocks at their local Apple retail store, buy one online, and then pick it up personally. We must note though, that the system is not active yet, but we can assume it will be when the stores have the iPad mini with Retina display in stock.
The Retina iPad mini starts at $419 for the 16GB WiFi only model and goes up to $849 for the 128 GB Cellular +Wi-Fi model. The Wi-Fi-only models are currently available to ship in 1–3 business days, and the Cellular models in 5–10 business days.
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Posted under: iPad News