Anonymous sources have confirmed that the iPad Mini is due for release in October. Also, the smaller iPad will have a 7.85 inch display, versus the 9.7 inch one on its big brother. The screen will not be of Retina quality either and the lamination coating will be made by Yeh Cheng Technology, a subsidiary of Foxconn Technology Group.
The October release date is hardly surprising, because Microsoft will release the Surface tablet and Windows 8 on October 26, which will compete head-on with the iPad, reducing its market share. Microsoft may sell the Surface for a wallet-friendly $200, hence making a smaller version of the iPad will enable Apple to sell the device at a cheaper price point and keep market share up, while at the same time protecting the price of the larger, flagship iPad with its premium high resolution Retina display. It looks like October is set to be an interesting month.
Apple, which shipped 17 million iPads in the second quarter, had about 70 percent of the tablet market for the period, spurred by the release of a new iPad featuring a higher- resolution screen, researcher IHS said on Aug. 14. The smaller iPad will not have the higher-quality display.