Apple Bytes #10 – iPad Mini: It’s Here!

As predicted, the iPad Mini is unveiled by Apple as it enters small tablet market. Apple finally unveiled its own 7.9in (20.1cm) tablet, the iPad Mini. The device, which is 7.2mm (0.3in) thick and weighs 0.68lbs (0.3kg), will launch in the UK as a wi-fi-only model, with 16GB storage, and will cost £269 and be available from the 2nd November.

The iPad Mini will compete directly with cheaper similar-sized tablets recently launched such as the Google Nexus 7, Amazon Kindle HD and Samsung Galaxy Tab.

In comparison, the iPad Mini is 23% thinner and 53% lighter than the third-generation iPad (or iPad 3), released in March this year. The launch of the iPad Mini comes in the face of mounting pressure from Apple’s closest competitors, who already offer smaller & cheaper products, e.g. the Amazon’s new 7in Kindle Fire HD and Google’s Nexus 7 cost £159.

The first thing I notice is that you are able to hold the device in one hand, and that it will fit comfortably into my jacket or coat pocket. As I don’t have an iPhone, I think I’m quite inclined to get a wi-fi + 4G version, to get the benefits true mobile connectivity. I am a little disappointed that the iPad Mini isn’t more competitively priced, as the Google Nexus 7 and the Amazon Kindle Fire have attracted customers looking for more affordable devices.

The other iPad Mini wi-fi-only models will have a recommended retail price of £349 for 32GB and £429 for 64GB, and devices supporting 3G and 4G data connections will be released a couple of weeks from now – they will be priced at £369 for 16GB, £449 for 32GB and £529 for 64GB.

Apple also announced a lower-key upgrade for the full-sized iPad. Calling it the “fourth generation” iPad, it carries the new A6X chip, meaning it has twice the CPU power of the third-generation model. It’s a bit of a surprise for us who only just bought an iPad 3 about 6 months ago, but I guess like the PC market, keeping your models fresh is part of maintaining your already dominant position in the tablet market – Apple will hold a 68% share of the market in 2012, compared to 29% for Android tablets. And Apple needs to consolidate its position before a slew of Windows 8 tablets hit the market, following this year’s Microsoft’s Surface release.

Source: Apple
Reporter: SilverFox

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