Cheap iPad Mini Release Expected This Quarter


Apple's product roadmap for this year is a bit vague right now. If rumours are anything to go by, the Cupertino based outfit is set to release multiple iPhones, multiple iPads and revamped versions of the Macbook lineup. The company traditionally does not comment on rumours, so it hasn't exactly come up and confirmed what products we'll be seeing this year. According to a latest report, Apple is going to release a cheap iPad mini model this quarter, whereas the scheduled second generation iPad mini with Retina display won't be available till later this year.


The report comes from KGI Securities analyst Ming-Chi Kuo. Ming has voiced off many opinions related to Apple in the past as well, it should be kept in mind that analysts don't always have the precise information, though their guidelines can help us better understand the future product roadmap. Ming suggests that Apple is going to release a cheap iPad mini before it releases the one with the major revamp. Apparently the iPad mini with Retina display is proving to be difficult to manufacture, therefore to fill the gap in between, the company is going to release a cheap iPad mini which is likely to be priced between $199 and $249.

The first generation iPad mini has internal hardware that is in many ways similar to the iPad 2. Apple can drive the product's cost down through a number of ways, they can remove the rear camera, decrease on board storage and simplify production of the device's metal casing. Having a cheap iPad mini out in the market while it prepares the one with all major improvements will allow Apple to fend off its competitors and still maintain a footing in the mid-range tablet market that is largely dominated by a plethora of Android tablets.

Ming also says that for Apple's tablet share to grow significantly, the company must keep on releasing new and improved products, though the analyst believes that it won't happen till the forth quarter of 2013. It is the same time frame in which Apple is expected to announce its fifth generation iPad as well as the revamped iPad mini which will tout a Retina display.