Apple may roll out ‘Mini iPad’ in October 2012

Rumors are ripe that the half eaten apple cart may unload a ‘mini iPad’ soon. The Bloomberg reports claim that a 7.85 inch tablet would be rolled out from Apple’s cache by the end of this year. After Kindle Fire Tablet and Google Nexus 7 the small tablet market is already heating up and if Apple mini iPad joins the bandwagon then indeed the competition is going to get tougher.

It was in March that an official from Samsung revealed Apple’s game plan of a cheaper and smaller version of its tablet. A Bloomberg report, citing people “with knowledge of the plans”, added more steam to Apple’s plan of jumping into a different segment of the tablet market.

As per the report, the smaller tablet is targeted towards the masses. Evidently, it will be less expensive than the much popular 9.7-inch version currently in the market. Apple may do way with the high-resolution “retina display” which is the USP of its new iPad, iPhone 4S and latest Macbook Pro. The company “may announce” the tablet by October, the report said. This is also the time it is expected to roll out a new iPhone line.

There was a time when Apple could not fathom a tablet that’s small in size as it was late co-founder Steve Jobs’ belief that any touch screen device that was sized small was essentially too tiny to use.

However, analysts have pointed out that a smaller tablet could pay off Apple in two ways. Apple can bank on customers who have an affinity towards its iTunes store and iCloud. It can come up with a sort of large iPod which could be the hub of games, movie and music. There could not be a better way to get people addicted to iTunes and App stores if they can be plugged in even on the go.

Second, as IDC research manager Ian Song pointed out, when the new iPad hit shelves in March, it was a huge tablet… not something everyone in Asia would like to carry around. Smaller tablets have their appeal – they are light, small and powerful enough to meet computing needs. They slip easily into a purse or small bag and make it much easier to read or watch something almost anywhere.

After the success of Kindle Fire and Barnes and Noble Nook tablet among book lovers, Google has already launched its Nexus 7. Now, if Apple joins the league of small neat tablets then the question is what would be its competitive strategy. Would it be the yummy price or would it be the formidable app store for which Apple would bet its bottom dollar on?

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