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Rumor has 7.85-inch iPad produced no earlier than summer

updated 11:15 pm EST, Wed February 29, 2012

Mini iPad gets late 2012 arrival date

Apple's long rumored smaller iPad was given a tentative production timeline in a rumor late Wednesday. Sample units were supposed by Digitimes' part supplier sources to be going out for testing, but production was still some distance away. It wouldn't start production until summer "at the earliest," according to the tip.

Even if accurate, the talk of the release plans would show a possible moving target as Apple tried to firm up its plans. One earlier rumor had Apple starting mass production in late spring. If production started in the summer, a release would be more likely either towards the end of the summer or early fall as Apple would need to build up supplies.

Although purely speculation, the suppliers thought this smaller iPad would slot in between $249 and $299, with a regular-sized but 8GB iPad 2 supposedly in the middle for $349 to $399. Such a price strategy would likely be meant to squeeze out Amazon's Kindle Fire and Barnes & Noble's Nook Tablet, whose popularity is built primarily on giving some key tablet features at a much lower price.

Doubts have always persisted about a smaller tablet given that late Apple co-founder Steve Jobs famously dismissed the idea due to the number of interface elements that would have to be sacrificed to make it happen. At 7.85 inches, though, the future would be just large enough to avoid some of the conflicts coming from such a small size without sacrificing the size advantage over current iPads.



By Electronista Staff
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Comments

  1. Paul Huang

    Mac Enthusiast

    Joined: Sep 1999

    +7

    I think this is a joke

    8GB? You've got to be joking. By the end of the year, the 8GB would be gobbled up by the iOS footprint.

    16GB will remain the baseline.

  1. chas_m

    Joined:

    +4

    NA GA HA PEN

    While I don't have any doubt that Apple is willing to test smaller displays for possible future devices, I don't think we're going to see a smaller iPad. The press would never let Cook live down "spitting on Jobs' grave" for a start.

    Secondly, Steve was (as he often was) right about this. Apple already tested, and picked, the right size for a tablet.

    Now having said that, if you told me Apple was going to make a dedicated iBooks reader aimed that the school market and e-reader crowd that was more-or-less a dedicated iTunes front end at was 7-8 inches in size, I'd say "sure, why not?"

  1. drumrobot

    Fresh-Faced Recruit

    Joined: Oct 2009

    +2

    Please...

    stop reposting this ludicrous rumors. There's no 7-inch iPad. There won't be one this year. Or next year. Just use your common sense. iPad 3's Retina Display will already require devs to update their apps. A 7-inch screen would require complete redesigns, not just updated graphics. It would kill the Apple Ecosystem.

  1. Jeronimo2000

    Forum Regular

    Joined: Aug 2001

    +1

    @drumrobot

    They've GOT to spread ludicrous rumors. It's how they run their business. The more ludicrous, the better. The more outrageous, the more page views. The more ridiculous, the more user interaction (Exhibit A).

    Apart from that: yes, no chance in h*** we'll ever see a 7" iPad. It's not like they were a huge hit on the Android front.

  1. testudo

    Forum Regular

    Joined: Aug 2001

    +1

    Re: NA GA HA PEN

    While I don't have any doubt that Apple is willing to test smaller displays for possible future devices, I don't think we're going to see a smaller iPad. The press would never let Cook live down "spitting on Jobs' grave" for a start.

    Gee, so no one at apple is allowed to do anything that Steve Jobs himself already dismissed? Do all the execs have to start wearing bracelets that read "WWSJD"?

    Does that mean we won't ever see a 4G phone, because Steve said it was a bad thing? Does that mean that, if he were to died five years ago, releasing an iPhone would be spitting on his grave? Or that would be OK because they started it under his watch?

    But wait. What if Steve Jobs was already looking at smaller screen sizes? As we know, he often dismissed technologies up to the point they implemented them. Then wouldn't it be OK?

    And what happens when the press start asking the questions of Apple computer like "Is Tim Cook a real CEO or is he just a Steve Jobs puppet, afraid to do anything that he doesn't think Steve Jobs would approve of?".

    Secondly, Steve was (as he often was) right about this. Apple already tested, and picked, the right size for a tablet.

    Yeah, yeah. Apple tested several sizes. They picked one. They did that because they were making JUST ONE iPad. But that's like saying Apple couldn't develop an iPod touch, iPod mini, iPod nano, iPod shuffle, because they had tested several things and came out with the iPod 10 years ago. It was the chosen size and style, and so no need to change.

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