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News

iPad Mini – What you need to know about Apple’s next tablet

The iPad Mini is due to be announced on October 23rd, here's all the latest rumours, specs and renders surrounding Apple's latest tablet.

With the launch of iPad Mini now pencilled in for October 30th (following its announcement at Apple’s special event a week earlier), it’s about time we walked into that ever-busy rumour mill and brought you back some of the best whisperings about Apple’s much-anticipated mini tablet. Here’s what we know so far.

iPad Mini with EarPods render by Martin Hajek (http://www.martinhajek.com)
Martin Hajek's iPad Mini renders give us a realistic look at the unannounced device

Launch details

The iPad Mini’s launch date is suspected to be 30th October, following on from its announcement at one of Apple’s famous Special Events on 23rd October. This makes perfect sense, given that the festive season is almost within touching distance. It also gives time for Apple (and manufacturers Foxconn) to breathe following a somewhat busy iPhone 5 launch.

iPad Mini - Competitors Comparison
iPad Mini vs. Kindle Fire HD vs. Nexus 7

Design

Taking on the likes of Google’s Nexus 7 and Amazon’s Kindle Fire HD, Apple’s iPad Mini will fall under the 7″ tablet umbrella, featuring a 7.85″ diagonal size screen. Much like its bigger brother, the iPad Mini will feature Apple’s (don’t say it too lately, for fear of another patent war) ‘trademark’ combination of glass and aluminium – although this has been rumoured to be causing a few issues at Foxconn’s factories in Brazil, which could lead to limited supplies at launch.

Everything about the design suggests we’re looking at a Honey-I-shrunk-the-iPad-style device with a screen ratio that matches the current, 9.7″ iPad. This makes a lot of sense, given that it’ll make app developers’ lives a lot easier when it comes to getting their work on the new device, as opposed to relying on letter-boxing like the iPhone 5.

Specs

Naturally, as far as rumours go, the iPad Mini’s display is stealing the show right now. The 7.85″ screen is rumoured to feature IGZO technology and will be produced by Sharp. Although Sharp aren’t historically known for producing displays for Apple, IGZO technology means that the iPad Mini’s display can remain fairly thin and light and still top out with a resolution of around 330ppi.

Naturally, the iPad Mini is rumoured to rely on Apple’s new Lightening connector for all of its charging and syncing needs, leading to an overall thickness no greater than that of the 4th-gen iPod Touch. This puts it at around 7.2mm thick, thinner than that of Amazon’s Kindle Fire.

The jury still appears to be out some of the device’s finer specs, such as its processor (there’s equal talk of an A5X or A6 processor), whether it’ll feature 3G connectivity, possible capacities or even the device’s camera (although some photos of parts have leaked). It’s had to price a device that’s lacking such a number of details, but who would we be not try anyway?…

iPad Mini - iPhone 5 comparison
Render by Martin Hajek (http://www.martinhajek.com)

Price

With the New York Times reporting that the iPad Mini will cost significantly less than the current iPad, there’s really not a lot to go on as far as price is concerned, although it’s suspected that Apple will price the new device somewhere between $249-$299 (£155-£186), putting it in direct competition with the Nexus 7 and Kindle Fire which are so far dominating the 7-inch tablet market. This certainly seems reasonable, and the range here could indicate a few different capacities.

Everything Else

Whether the iPad Mini comes in a range of colours (we’re personally hoping for the anodised aluminium treatment that featured on the iPhone 5 – see left), is called the iPad Air or contains NFC technology remains to be seen. Have you got an iPad Mini rumour we’ve missed off here? Let us know what you think in the comments below, via Twitter or on our Facebook page. We’d love to hear from you.

 

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