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It's an invitation-only event that will likely be held at Apple's Town Hall Auditorium

After much speculation, Apple is set to finally introduce its iPad Mini tablet near the end of this month.

According to AllThingsD, Apple is holding an event on October 23 for its second fall product release. It's an invitation-only event that will likely be held at Apple's Town Hall Auditorium, since it already announced its main product launch -- the iPhone 5 -- at San Francisco's Yerba Buena Center for the Arts.

While there aren't many details available on the iPad Mini, some have trickled through the cracks, such as its 7.85-inch display. AllThingsD also reported that it will likely be thinner and will have a Lightning connector.

IPad Mini production reportedly began on October 3, and Apple is looking to produce 10 million of them in the fourth quarter of this year. If anything, this shows that Apple is confident about the upcoming potential success of its iPad Mini, considering this is double the number of Kindle Fire's that Amazon made in Q4 2011 -- and that was the hot holiday item of last year.


iPad Mini rendering [Image Source: Martin Hajek]
 
Apple is dipping into the 7-inch tablet arena after years of sticking with the traditional 9.7-inch iPads. The reason is clear: 7-inch tablets are smaller and cheaper, and consumers want them.

Other tablet makers like Amazon, ASUS and Samsung have created popular 7-inch tablets over the past year. Amazon's Kindle Fire was the trailblazer for others like Google's ASUS-built Nexus 7 tablet, which, like the Kindle Fire, is a 7-inch tablet for $199.

The 7-inch tablet market is getting a lot more interesting lately, with Barnes & Noble releasing a new refreshed version of its 7-inch Nook with HD and HD+ models.

Beyond that, Amazon of course had to make a comeback with newer, more powerful models to stay competitive. It recently announced its Kindle Fire HD line, which includes an updated 7-inch Fire for $199, an 8.9-inch Fire for $299 and a 4G LTE model for $499. On top of that, Amazon is offering a generous data package for only $50 per year.

Apple wants to strike the iron while it's hot in terms of the 7-inch market, and the iPad Mini is geared up for a holiday release that could help uphold the tech giant's current tablet dominance.

Source: All Things D





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