Apple’s iPad mini, the world’s best-selling tablet computer, to get high-res Retina display tomorrow

“Apple Inc.’s Mini is a big draw, for consumers and rivals,” Daisuke Wakabayashi and Ian Sherr report for The Wall Street Journal.

“The iPad Mini — a 7.9-inch version of its more-expensive sibling — is the world’s best-selling tablet computer, and is estimated to account for nearly two of every three iPads sold,” Wakabayashi and Sherr report. “The smaller-screen tablet that Steve Jobs once said would be ‘DOA, dead on arrival’ now plays a central role in the company’s strategy for the post-PC era.”

MacDailyNews Take: This is a lie. Steve Jobs said the Android tablets would be DOA. He never said an iOS tablet would. Furthermore, the clearly stated 7-inch tablets, not a 7.9-inch iPad which offers some 35% larger viewing area than 7-inch Android tablets.

“Apple is now readying a revamped iPad Mini with a high-resolution ‘retina’ display,” Wakabayashi and Sherr report. “It’s also working on a thinner, lighter version of its standard 9.7-inch iPad, using a thin film instead of the glass found in existing models, based on information from the company’s parts suppliers.”

Wakabayashi and Sherr report, “‘It will become harder to sell to new customers where price is important, and Apple doesn’t compete on price as much,’ said Sarah Rotman Epps, an analyst at Forrester Research Inc.”

MacDailyNews Take: It will become harder to sell to new customers where cargo space is important, and Ferrari doesn’t compete on cargo space as much (or, even more accurately, at all).

Wakabayashi and Sherr report, “The same day Apple holds its iPad event, Microsoft will introduce its second-generation Surface tablet. With Microsoft Office and Outlook email included in the new Surface, the software giant is hoping to appeal to corporate customers—a largely untapped customer base for tablets.”

MacDailyNews Take: Good luck with that, Microsloth:

Over 95% of custom apps developed by businesses are written for Apple iOS devices – October 17, 2013

Wakabayashi and Sherr report, “Apple lists more than 375,000 apps designated to work on the iPad, compared with the ‘low tens of thousands’ tablet apps in Google Play, according to research firm Canalys in August. Canalys said nearly half of the 50 most popular paid and free iPad apps weren’t available in Google Play or weren’t optimized for tablet use.”

Read more in the full article here.


    1. If the original iPad had been 7 or 8″, it might have been ODA. They needed a near-laptop size tablet to create the market.

      Market analyst prediction (me): First day orders for an updated iPad Mini are going to be off the charts.

    2. The iPad mini needs to become a true phone as well.
      Call the convergence of this product as you may; missing out on this opportunity would be a huge mistake for Apple.

      The solution requires an Apple Bluetooth ear phone so people are not required to hold a Pad to their head.

  1. Exactly MDN. I will be buying a 128 GB, LTE iPad as soon as it is available for order. I am out of space on my 64 GB iPad 3. I will be buying a mini for my son too, but I like the larger display and capacity for myself.

    1. The iPad Mini was the first (to my knowledge) post-Jobs decision by Apple/Cook that proved the company’s new future. I certainly don’t want a 7″. Steve Jobs didn’t want one. But they’re selling great! Someone over there had better insight!

      Here’s is some of what Steve Jobs actually said, with a direct recording linked below:

      While one could increase the resolution to make up some of the difference, it is meaningless unless your tablet also includes sandpaper, so that the user can sand down their fingers to around one-quarter of their present size. Apple has done expensive user testing on touch interfaces over many years, and we really understand this stuff.
      There are clear limits of how close you can place physical elements on a touch screen, before users cannot reliably tap, flick or pinch them. This is one of the key reasons we think the 10-inch screen size is the minimum size required to create great tablet apps.

      . . . .
      The 7-inch tablets are tweeners: too big to compete with a smartphone and too small to compete with the iPad.
      . . . .
      These are among the reasons we think the current crop of 7-Inch tablets are going to be DOA, dead on arrival. Their manufacturers will learn the painful lesson that their tablets are too small and increase the size next year, thereby abandoning both customers and developers who jumped in the 7″ bandwagon with an orphan products. Sounds like lots of fun ahead.

      Live and learn, as per usual, the point of being alive.

      1. Excellent research and post.
        Well done Derek.
        Thank you.

        Jobs was not interested in a smaller iPad.

        IMO – I think the Touch is too small for children. And the iPad is too large for daily travel. iPad mini is a perfect size and if only Apple would add telephone capabilities it will be huge.

        Again and again I have posted this:
        Apple can streamline its product line to just the
        IPAD and IPHONE. It would clarify the differences for customers and simplify the buying decision.

        —- iPad —-
        Pick your screen size, processor and storage
        4″ / 7.9″ / 9.7″ displays
        A5 / A6 / A7 chip
        32 / 64 / 128 Gb storage
        – wifi only – no Sim slot
        *iPod touch is a micro iPad basically

        —- iPhone —-
        Pick your screen size, processor and storage
        4″ / 7.9″ / 9.7″ displays
        A5 / A6 / A7 chip
        32 / 64 / 128 Gb storage
        – cellular carrier Sim slot
        – wifi
        – bluetooth ear phone

  2. It is by NO means a foregone conclusion that the iPad mini will get a retina display. This is just setting up expectations based on no evidence. Apple is doubtless “readying” an iPad mini with Retina, but only tomorrow will tell if the new version has it.

    1. It would be the height of stupidity for Apple to release an iPad mini update sans Retina display. These aren’t crazy expectations. Perhaps initial availability will be limited with production ramping in the months ahead, but if Apple releases a non-Retina mini tomorrow then whatever flak they get will be well deserved.

  3. I love MDN’s backtracking on what SJ said about small tablets.

    They seem to forget that SJ also said that 9.7 inches was the optimum size for the software that existed for the iPad, that a smaller tablet would require the users to “sandpaper their fingers down” to a point small enough to use the screen.

    I guess with a 7.9 inch screen, the filing down necessary is at an acceptable level.

    1. And yet the argument sat in front of everyone’s face with iPhone and iPod touch being used by the world… smaller screen sizes being used without Sanding down your finger tips.

      Thank God the competition continued developing mid-size tablets even though they were DOA.

  4. I will be in line day one to get the new mini. I’ve been patiently waiting for a retina display mini for over a year now. I’ve been using a Kindle I got for free when I signed a new cable contract with Optimum. I can’t wait to retire that POS. The number of people waiting for the new RD iPad mini must be huge. Expect to see lines like we saw for the iPhone.

  5. “software giant is hoping to appeal to corporate customers—a largely untapped customer base for tablets.”

    No, Apple has already tapped those customers rather well.

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