Apple iPad mini rumours: this time it's serious!
Rumours of an Apple iPad mini have been doing the rounds for almost as long as the iPad itself has, so as always with speculation about future Apple products we’d advise keeping the salt within easy reach.
But the whispers have definitely stepped up a gear this week, with a number of different sources now all insisting that the smaller iPad is very much real and set to debut before the end of the year.
Apple’s original 9.7-inch iPad pretty much single-handedly created the tablet market as we know it today, and since its arrival in 2010 we’ve seen the market settle broadly into two main groups: the larger 10-inch variety such as the iPad and the Motorola Xoom, and the smaller 7-inch brigade, which includes the Samsung Galaxy Tab 2 and the Amazon Kindle Fire.
Former Apple boss Steve Jobs may have famously gone on record to say he didn’t see a future for the smaller form factor, but it seems the public doesn’t altogether agree, and 7-inch tablets have enjoyed something of a renaissance over the past six months or so.
That in itself doesn’t prove anything at all, of course, but the last couple of weeks have seen near-daily reports that Apple has placed orders for everything from LCD displays, backlight modules, touch film sensors and other components, and that the company is eyeing a launch towards the end of Q3, with the goal of shifting six million units by Christmas.
If those component claims are indeed accurate, it’s about as solid a case you could make for the iPad mini’s existence, since Apple doesn’t have any other products in its line-up anywhere near that screen size.
But rumours like this have been wrong before, so the best course of action is probably just to ignore them: if nothing is forthcoming, then you haven’t lost any sleep over it, and if an iPad mini does indeed launch later this year, it’ll make for a nice techy treat to tuck under the tree at Christmas.