Mobile // Mobile Devices
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10/8/2012
05:19 PM
Larry Seltzer
Larry Seltzer
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Will the iPad Mini Succeed? Can it Possibly Fail?

The easy and obvious prediction to make about the iPad Mini is that it will fly off the shelves, just like all other Apple devices. Will it really? Consumers have many choices for tablets that size, most probably cheaper and some, like the Amazon Kindle Fire, very popular. We asked our team of writers to give their considered opinions.

All three iPads have been runaway successes in the market, playing a big part in making Apple the richest company in the world. So if Apple decides to launch a smaller version of the device, how can it possibly fail?

A leaked photo of the iPad Mini.

"iPad Mini," it must be repeated, is a name used by the press for a product the company has not even acknowledged. We don't know what it will be named--we don't even really know that it exists. But it seems likely that it does; Apple rumors like this are usually pretty reliable in the big picture, if not in all the details. The leaked image above, for instance, is clearly not just a shrunken iPad 3, as it has the new Lightning connector.

The rumors have also provided some technical detail about the size of the device and the resolution of the screen. That, and the completely open question of the price Apple charges, create some considerable uncertainty about it. This isn't 2010 when Apple launched the iPad into a market vacuum. Consumers have many credible choices in 7-inch tablets, principally Amazon's Kindle Fire and Kindle Fire HD. Microsoft and its OEMs are about to launch a wave of Windows 8 tablets and hybrid tablet/notebook devices.

What will it all mean? Will the iPad Mini be a winner? We asked our writers to give their best guess.

But don't let them have the last word. What do you think? Join in the discussion below.

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