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9/18/2012
12:05 PM
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iPad Mini Leak Looks Legit

Photos of what appear to be a smaller Apple iPad come close to confirming that the device is real.

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New photos of a tablet device with Apple branding and design language appeared on a Chinese blog that match earlier photos of the same device. The device is purported to be the iPad Mini, a smaller version of Apple's iconic tablet computer.

Apple has not announced plans to manufacture such a device, but it has been in the works a long time. Component suppliers from Asia have tipped Apple's smaller tablet plans numerous times.

The latest leaked images show a device that makes use of an aluminum shell, which has become synonymous with Apple's iPad. Based on the images, the iPad Mini's aluminum shell is thicker and somewhat less attractive than the new iPad, thanks to thicker edges.

The leaked images don't confirm how big the device is, but it has long been assumed that the iPad Mini will feature a display measuring 7.85 inches. The full-sized iPad has a 9.7-inch display.

[ Apple's newest operating system doesn't impress. See iOS 6: Apple Headed For Design Rut? ]

Two cameras are plainly visible in the leaked photos: one on the back and one on the front, presumably for FaceTime. The iPad Mini also appears to have a smaller port, which is probably the same Lightning port on the just-announced iPhone 5. The smaller port is flanked by speakers along the bottom edge of the iPad Mini.

Other features of the iPad Mini are not known. Will it have a Retina Display, will it run an A6 or an A5 processor? How much RAM and storage will it have, and can it be used on cellular networks?

Apple has a lot of competition in the entry-level tablet space, including the Nexus 7 and new Amazon Kindle Fire. Both tablets are available for less than $200. If Apple fields a competitive alternative at an attractive price point, it could bury these and other inexpensive Android tablet options.

Apple is expected to announce the device sometime in October. It should be available before the holidays. Pricing for the iPad Mini is believed to fall in the $249 - $349 range. The new iPad starts at $499.

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Josue5050
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Josue5050,
User Rank: Apprentice
9/24/2012 | 3:06:49 PM
re: iPad Mini Leak Looks Legit
It's called customer satisfaction, they made the screen a bit bigger to please the people who complained about the small screen.
Andrew Hornback
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Andrew Hornback,
User Rank: Apprentice
9/19/2012 | 2:11:42 AM
re: iPad Mini Leak Looks Legit
Perhaps this is a sign that the iPod Touch is done. Rather than leech sales of one product, announce that a new one is coming out to replace an old one. I haven't looked at Apple's product line in a while, but I can only imagine that there are other devices in their line up that would serve as a music player while pushing buyers to purchase either an iPhone or an iPad Mini.

Seems rather smart to me, but then again, what do I know?

Andrew Hornback
InformationWeek Contributor
pkohler01
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pkohler01,
User Rank: Apprentice
9/18/2012 | 9:20:28 PM
re: iPad Mini Leak Looks Legit
The rumor-mill has been spinning news about this device for a long time now. I really am curious how close them are to manufacturing this device and if what we see in those photos is a limited series proof of concept thing or if it's a prototype on the way to market.

At the $250 pricing, this device would stand to potentially devastate the market for Android tablets, which offer significantly more functionality than iOS devices. Although, to be honest, those functionality differences might not appeal to most users (who seem to just want to play Angry Birds or whatever). On the other hand, what if it fails to compete after the first generation or two? Could that lead to a downward spiral for the standard sized iPad (if users rejected the smaller iOS tablet for Android devices)?

Anyway, I'm really curious to see how this entire thing unfolds. This is, after all, the form factor that Jobs very publicly stated was useless (which is another reason why I'm so interested in seeing how this mini iPad does in sales).
ALethalSaiyan
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ALethalSaiyan,
User Rank: Apprentice
9/18/2012 | 9:07:03 PM
re: iPad Mini Leak Looks Legit
The Ipad Mini already exists. It's called the Ipod touch... This is why I hate Apple. They release something old as if it's new.
Nick4114
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Nick4114,
User Rank: Apprentice
9/18/2012 | 8:59:23 PM
re: iPad Mini Leak Looks Legit
Because they're mostly just copying the competition at this point. Ironic, no?
urmexicanddy
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urmexicanddy,
User Rank: Apprentice
9/18/2012 | 8:28:32 PM
re: iPad Mini Leak Looks Legit
this is stupid ,mini iPad? .,so why they made the iphone 5 screen bigger ,.
Nick4114
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Nick4114,
User Rank: Apprentice
9/18/2012 | 6:30:19 PM
re: iPad Mini Leak Looks Legit
You really think Apple would sell an iPad mini for less than the cheapest iPod Touch ($299)? $350, maybe, but then they're already almost double the price of the Nexus and more than double the cheapest Kindle Fire. Apple is depending heavily on brand loyalty to support their sales, rather than the innovation and competitive pricing that other companies are showing.
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