By SteveJack

Some people haven’t been paying attention for the past three decades, so I have a newsflash for them: Apple sells premium products at premium prices to premium customers.”

The latest “shock” to the perpetually Apple-ignorant on Wall Street is the iPad mini, which starts at US$329, not the $199 or so that iPad wannabe outfits charge for their ecosystem-free, tiny screen, cheap plastic slabs of junk. Whoever thought Apple was going to play at the bottom of the barrel either hasn’t been paying attention or was born yesterday. Wake up or have a happy birthday.

Apple’s Phil Schiller told reporters as much today following the iPad mini’s debut, saying he expects consumers to recognize quality and be willing to pay for it.

And those who won’t deserve their fate.

“Theirs is made of plastic,” Schiller said, referring to the Android tablet. “The entire Android product is thicker and heavier.” Not to mention that they have no apps beyond upscaled phone apps and random “marketplaces” full of malware.

Amidst a raft of analysts who don’t, Janney analyst Bill Choi gets it, writing, “We don’t think Apple needs to compete aggressively on price against mini-tablets from Android; Apple continues to sell a premium product in the fast growing tablet market at premium price points.”

Listen, if you can’t afford an iPad mini, you’re not in the target market. Stop whining. Nobody cares. Developers aren’t interested in those who can’t muster at least $329 for iPad mini. Neither are advertisers. Neither is Apple, who are running a business, not a charity. If you want an iPad mini, but you can’t afford it, either save up for one or trot on over to Costco and settle for a cheesy, plastic, tiny screen pretend iPad mini and all that doesn’t go with it. The choice is yours. It’s like an IQ test.

So, to recap: With iPad mini, nothing has changed. Apple sells premium products at premium prices to premium customers and, when all is said and done, they will sell hundreds of millions of iPad mini units worldwide.

SteveJack is a long-time Macintosh user, web designer, multimedia producer and a regular contributor to the MacDailyNews Opinion section.