We’ve just about recovered from the hangover induced by the iPhone 4S/5 rumour mill, but as they say, there’s no rest for the wicked.
Word has it that Apple are preparing to launch an “iPad mini” in response to the Kindle Fire. We know what you’re thinking already: didn’t Steve Jobs say once upon a time that smaller tablets were “dead on arrival”? True, although in this case the “mini” part doesn’t refer to the size of the tablet, more so the price. If this mythical and magical device turns out to be real, it could be priced in “the mid-to-high $200 range” – it would also be expected to launch in the first few months of 2012. And the iPad 3? That would still be on track for Q2 2012.
It’s not a totally far fetched idea, especially given the range of price points Apple are now hitting with their line of iPhones. The original iPad can be found refurbished on Apple’s store well below the original cost, but conversely Apple never offered an “official” cheaper version alongside the launch of the iPad 2 like it does with the iPhone 4 8GB and iPhone 4S.
While the Kindle Fire had the tech world abuzz after Amazon’s announcement, it was revealed that it was only being released in the USA, disappointing a lot of Brits in the process. If Apple’s cheap iPad turns out to be true, their global presence combined with a low cost tablet could secure the market position Amazon were hoping to fill.