Print 33 comment(s) - last by WinTard.. on Oct 9 at 4:14 PM

This shows that Apple has plenty of confidence in its new addition to the iPad family despite the fact that the market is already flooded with 7-inch tablets

The iPad Mini hasn't even been announced yet, but Apple is already planning to make over 10 million of them in the fourth quarter of this year. 
Ten million iPad Minis is almost double the number of Amazon Kindle Fires that were made during Q4 2011 -- and the Fire was the hottest holiday item last year. This shows that Apple has plenty of confidence in its new addition to the iPad family despite the fact that the market is already flooded with 7-inch tablets. 
Apple is still the big player in the tablet market with its 9.7-inch iPad, but the tech giant has noticed a new trend that is grabbing customers' attention -- smaller, cheaper tablets
Companies like Amazon, ASUS and Samsung have turned the tablet world upside down with the idea of smaller tablets that are more affordable, but also have strong features. Amazon led the pack with its 7-inch Kindle Fire tablet last year for $199. Samsung's Galaxy Tabs have 7-inch versions in the mix, and more recently, Google teamed up with ASUS for the 7-inch Nexus 7 tablet for $199. 

iPad Mini rendering [Image Source: Martin Hajek]
As if that wasn't enough, Amazon jumped back into the small tablet market with a refreshed 7-inch Kindle Fire HD for $199, an 8.9-inch Fire HD for $299 and a 4G LTE HD model for $499. On top of that, the e-tailer is offering a generous data package with its tablets for only $49.99 per year. 
It's clear that the smaller tablet market is quite competitive, and it's what customers want. In Q2 2010, Apple had 84 percent of the worldwide tablet market share. In Q2 2012, this number dropped to 69.6 percent, further showing that competitors like Android-powered tablets are cutting in. 
Of course, Apple wants a piece of that pie and is looking to hold onto its tablet dominance. Doing so means the release of an iPad Mini, which is rumored to be a 7.85-inch version of the usual 9.7-inch iPad. 
[Image Source: Martin Hajek]
Apple is expected to announce the iPad Mini later this month. Last week, Apple's Asian component suppliers started production of the iPad Mini, and the tech giant is looking to make about 10 million in Q4 2012 for the holiday season. However, the iPad Mini's success will be largely based on its affordability and features, which have yet to be disclosed. 

Sources: The Wall Street Journal, Martin Hajek

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By chris2618 on 10/8/2012 2:17:02 PM , Rating: 2
Is the price available for this yet or are we going to be waiting till just before Christmas. Also is this a good idea for apple as isn't the point of apple stuff its "the best" why would apple fan get something which isn't really the best.

RE: Price?
By StevoLincolnite on 10/8/2012 2:36:35 PM , Rating: 3
Something being the "best" can be highly subjective depending on needs/wants/price/availability/personal tastes and preference.

I'm yet to find any of Apple's products to be the "best" for my needs, they're far to simplified and their Desktops/Laptops designs looks plain ugly to me. (Give me a side window, Lights, Water cooling loop any day.)

RE: Price?
By ImEmmittSmith on 10/8/2012 3:26:46 PM , Rating: 2
You are right, very subjective! What made my decision over a Samsung product when I purchased my iPad 2 for my family was; 1) At the time, Samsung had issues with their customer service not taking care of customer problems, hopefully that is resolved by now, but have not checked if this is something that is still a problem. Apple has great service and seems to go beyond what most other companies will. My daughter's iPhone 4 had issues and was out of warranty by a few months and the Apple store said they would exchange it. I am a tech guy by trade and when most things are out of warranty you are SOL in most cases. 2) Simply ease of use and it just works(lol). I was using a Palm Treo when the iPhone came out and my Palm was so clumsy compared to the iPhone, so I made the switch to the 3GS and found out how it made my business life so much easier in regards to contacts and communication. 3) Facetime on the iPad 2. It made connecting with my daughter at college so easy. Many families have an investment in Apple products and apps and switching to another phone/tablet just doesn't make sense financially.
I do hate not having the ability to expand my memory, but I bought a large enough one to begin with(32gb) and it has been a non-issue. Now the connector being proprietary is my biggest gripe and it still is! Overall I think people, especially families will stick with one platform because of simplicity and familiarity. Plus, one type of connector for all.
With Apple changing the connector, I have looked at the Galaxy products, but just don't see big enough differences to change, except for screen size limitation on the new iPhone.

RE: Price?
By GotThumbs on 10/8/12, Rating: -1
RE: Price?
By xti on 10/8/2012 3:08:29 PM , Rating: 2
You are castrating the consumer choice - people update/upgrade all the time...heck I see my odometer hit 50k and I'm looking for a new car. Should I not get another infiniti if i had such a great time in my 06?

It's not just apple fans who buy the latest iteration...its basically anyone with disposable income. I just went from IP4 to SG3 and I know that in about 12-24 months, I'll be looking at what is available. Am I not allowed to buy another Samsung product?

I just always question people opinions here, its almost like price is much more of a factor than they lead on - otherwise...this are all luxury items, it comes with the territory. Who cares if you had SG1,2 & 3 - or Ipad 1st/2nd/3rd/etc gen?

RE: Price?
By tayb on 10/8/2012 3:17:45 PM , Rating: 2
I'm curious about price as well. Given the $199 iPod touch, $399 iPad 2, and $499 iPad 3 I think it is a safe bet to estimate $249 or $299 for whatever they decide to call this thing, presumably the "iPad mini." To be competitive with the $199 Android tablets I think they'll need to hit $249 but it's a dangerous game because the closer they get to $199 the more it will cannibalize sales of the iPod touch and the closer to $399 they get the more it will cannibalize sales of the iPad 2. I'm willing to bet Apple has better margins on the iPod touch and iPad 2 than they will on a $249 or $299 iPad mini. It's an odd product in their lineup.

This also starts to bring up an interesting discussion as to what exactly constitutes a tablet. In all seriousness the iPad is just a blown up iPod touch. Now we're talking about a smaller iPad or a not quite as blown up iPod touch, depending on how you look at things. What makes the iPad a tablet and the iPod touch something else? Then we also have products such as the Galaxy Note which blurs the line again.

If they can get to $249 I think Amazon will feel it the most. The $199 Kindle Fire just feels cheap and the custom Android variant is pretty shoddy. The Nexus 7 is a pretty great tablet and should hold its own well against a mini iPad.

RE: Price?
By AdamTurney on 10/8/2012 6:12:19 PM , Rating: 2
Actually, the iPod Touch 5g is $299 for 32gb and $399 for 64gb. So unless the iPad Mini is sporting less memory and weaker specs (iPad 2 vs iPad 3) it is hard to see it being so inexpensive.

RE: Price?
By tayb on 10/8/2012 7:57:38 PM , Rating: 2
Starting price is $199 and the iPod touch, iPad, and iPhone all start with 16GB. Anything above 16GB is pure markup and profit for Apple.

RE: Price?
By Cheesew1z69 on 10/9/2012 9:32:41 AM , Rating: 2
Right from the Apple site..

ipod touch

From $299

and no 16gb...

fail on your part...

now unless you are talking about older models, but the new ones, no...

RE: Price?
By fteoath64 on 10/9/2012 5:11:55 AM , Rating: 2
If priced at $249 ( or better still $229), this Mini will sell 10 million units. Apple should not look into cannibalization within their own range of products but taking sales away from the competition!.

The main target would be iPad users who would need a second or third or fourth unit at a lower price. It would have to target the 7 inch tablet market since this is a growing area where Apple has no presence there. If they could just put the same camera as the iPhone 4S in it , that will do the job as a differentiator in the segment.
Good luck on this product Apple. For once, do something right for a change ...

RE: Price?
By NellyFromMA on 10/9/2012 11:18:58 AM , Rating: 2
Apple won't sell at $249 because they wqould absolute neuter their own market share. Think 300-350 as Apple has never once not chaged a premium, and if ever there was a time for them to claim it it would be in this market at this time.

People will buy it up for 350. A GREAT stat to note as sales move on will be how much overlap there will be between those who own an iPad of any sort and those who will now own an iPad mini.

I suspect it will be greater than anyone would estimate for any other manufacturer strictly because people who purchase Apple products tend to have plenty of disposable income and tend to not really mind having multiple devices that do the same thing.

Manufacturering of an iPad mini vs iPad3 will likely have very comparable costs. They won't eliminate more than 150 of their profits per device I don't think.

Won't be as popular
By mchentz on 10/8/2012 3:05:13 PM , Rating: 2
Apple missed their opportunity in this market. I seem to remember they saying them will not be making a smaller screen iPad. Now others have a strong foothold. The iPad mini will be a watered down iPad with a lot less features I would bet.

Personally my wife and I have enjoyed our Kindle Fire and will be getting another one the Large screen one (she wants it in the kitchen for her recipe's)in the Christmas time frame :)

RE: Won't be as popular
By TakinYourPoints on 10/8/2012 3:49:52 PM , Rating: 2
I'm not so sure. They have the brand momentum, they have the best developers, and they have the best mobile hardware. Even at a $50 premium over a Fire, an A5 or A6 equipped iPad mini would run circles around it and be an obvious practical choice when comparing them side by side.

The Fire was never good hardware to begin with, but it is cheap and unlike every other Android tablet OEM (pre-Nexus 7) it had a great company supporting it. Apple jumping into the $250-$300 range changes things quite a lot.

RE: Won't be as popular
By dark matter on 10/8/2012 3:58:39 PM , Rating: 1
Best mobile hardware?

Yeah, ok.

RE: Won't be as popular
By TakinYourPoints on 10/8/2012 4:32:46 PM , Rating: 2
Why wouldn't it be? It has the fastest SoCs and practical performance by a very wide margin. On top of that it actually has applications that use that fast hardware.

That is objectively the best mobile hardware, no? It certainly isn't coming from NVIDIA or TI right now. Anandtech's inevitable benchmark comparison between the Fire HD and the iPad Mini shouldn't show anything surprising.

RE: Won't be as popular
By Solandri on 10/8/2012 5:28:55 PM , Rating: 2
The brand momentum works partly against them in this case, since they spent years deriding the 7" tablet market as a too-small ugly duckling. They emphasized that you really need a full 10" screen for a real tablet experience.

Still, experience says the Apple faithful will eat up whatever the company tells them, no matter how much it contradicts what they were told in the past. So their fans could very well buy it up in droves.

RE: Won't be as popular
By KoolAidMan1 on 10/8/2012 7:18:31 PM , Rating: 2
It wouldn't be the first time Apple seriously changed their mind after making a strong stance going the other way. iOS was initially only supposed to run web apps, you'd never be able to buy music through an iPod, etc etc.

Market reasons aside, a 7" tablet probably makes more sense for them now than it did in 2010 since DPI has increased so much. You'll get iPad 1/2 level PPI in something smaller. No break in app compatability due to resolution since a 7" version will just use the pre-2012 res, etc etc. A pre-retina pre-2012 7" iPad would have introduced problems for developers there.

RE: Won't be as popular
By zephyrprime on 10/8/2012 4:47:08 PM , Rating: 2
By Dec 31st, I predict Apple will have sold more ipad mini's than all other 7" tablets in existence as of that future date. I completely disagree with you on the idea that the market is entrenched by other players. The market is nascent.

What if it never ships?
By Shadowself on 10/8/2012 5:53:02 PM , Rating: 2
People need to remember that this whole iPad Mini thing is just a rumor. There has been no on the record confirmation from anyone [not Apple, not Apple's suppliers, not Apple's software developers, not anyone] that this item will ever ship.

I remember back about 15 years or so ago when everyone was 100% sure that Apple was going to buy Be and replace the Mac OS with BeOS. Hell, one Mac centric magazine even devoted a full issue to it (timed to come out with the formal announcement) IIRC.

I think it would be the most fun ever if Apple never ships an iPad Mini. All the analysts and reporters would be running around going "But, but, but ... 'they' said it was real!"

RE: What if it never ships?
By theapparition on 10/9/2012 11:05:20 AM , Rating: 2
While I appreciate what you're saying, it's hard to hide a 10 million unit display order, especially if it fits in the iPad mini expected size and resolution, and it's bought by a manufacturer with strong ties to Apple.

People talk. And even if everything is off the record with a wink-wink nudge-nudge, it's pretty easy to put all the pieces together.

By ExarKun333 on 10/8/2012 2:02:19 PM , Rating: 2
Apple will not be 'producing' anything. They will be offering/making available to purchase this many iPads. :)

By damianrobertjones on 10/8/2012 4:47:01 PM , Rating: 2
"This shows that Apple has plenty of confidence in its new addition to the iPad family despite the fact that the market is already flooded with 7-inch tablets"

- There was a time when Steve Jobs didn't think much of the 7" tablet. Oh how times change. Or sales people are full of crap?

That still won't be enough
By Tony Swash on 10/8/12, Rating: -1
RE: That still won't be enough
By coondini on 10/8/2012 2:57:13 PM , Rating: 1
You're the first one in line anyway, so you've got nothing to worry about.

Hope your tent has heat and plenty of beer to boot.

RE: That still won't be enough
By Dr of crap on 10/8/2012 3:25:32 PM , Rating: 2
Yea have fun in line for those months while the rest of go on living and doing what ever we want.

Like I'd wait in line for this or anything else!

RE: That still won't be enough
By Tony Swash on 10/8/2012 3:39:25 PM , Rating: 1
Actually I have only ever queued for one Apple product which was Tiger back in 2005. I decided to get it on the day of release from the Apple Store in central London. I didn't really need to but I was free that day, the weather was good and I wanted to see what being in an Apple launch queue was like. It was pretty good fun, a couple of thousand people stretching several blocks, lots of conversation and a bit of a party atmosphere and the wait from joining the queue to getting the box with Tiger in it only took an hour. A pleasant and fun experience and I can see why people do it.

Personally I think that the people who I saw camped out four days before the iPhone 5 launch outside the same store were a bit bonkers but in a harmless way and if that's what they want to do then good luck to them, the world is better for harmless and somewhat silly enthusiasms.

It's the dudes who get all uptight about other people's enthusiasms that really worry me, they seem so unhappy and tense about what other people are doing with their time. That's not healthy. It's like they are angry about people enjoying a party to which they could have gone to but chose not too. Odd.

RE: That still won't be enough
By xti on 10/8/2012 3:45:42 PM , Rating: 2
I waited for IP4 for about 2 hours, and I got free chik-fil-a while in line.

sheep need to eat.

By Old_Fogie_Late_Bloomer on 10/9/2012 1:16:34 PM , Rating: 2
This post makes you sound so reasonable and sensible (and I agree with what you wrote!); it stands in stark contrast to all of your posts where you espouse your ridiculous belief that Google actually "copied" Apple in any meaningful way.

By damianrobertjones on 10/8/2012 4:48:33 PM , Rating: 1
You're probably right and that is a damn shame.

"iPad Mini rendering"
By GotThumbs on 10/8/12, Rating: -1
RE: "iPad Mini rendering"
By Tony Swash on 10/8/2012 3:45:35 PM , Rating: 2
Looks like an Ipad...only smaller.

Wow! what a concept!

The original iPad. Like an iPod Touch…. only bigger

Two and half years later Apple have sold a 100 million and the sales continue to increase. "Wow! what a concept" is exactly right.

RE: "iPad Mini rendering"
By Cheesew1z69 on 10/9/2012 10:23:56 AM , Rating: 2
RE: "iPad Mini rendering"
By WinTard on 10/9/2012 4:14:06 PM , Rating: 2
Only 10 million mini-pad to be sold this year?

Only 100 million maxi-pad sold to date since January 2010?

While Samsung will sell 400 million new smartphones sold this year...

Wow! What a concept.

"We shipped it on Saturday. Then on Sunday, we rested." -- Steve Jobs on the iPad launch

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