The next week’s event will be held at the California Theatre in San Jose, and the Cupertino tech giant has already sent out invitations that did not reveal details of the event, but hinted at something small with the words: “We’ve got a little more to show you.”
An Apple representative declined to reveal any further details. However, analysts have predicted for months that the company is planning to unveil a smaller, less expensive version of its popular iPad to take on cheaper competing devices.
However, some analysts predict that the Californian company plans to debut a smaller MacBook Pro with Retina display (a 13-inch model to join the 15-inch model) as well as a batch of redesigned iMacs.
The invitations were sent only hours after Apple’s rival Microsoft announced prices for its Surface tablet, which will go on sale at the same price as the iPad, but offer 32GB of storage instead of Apple’s 16GB. The tablet will also offer 64GB, but there are no 3G-capable versions of the Surface, unlike the iPad.
The expected smaller tablet is rumored to have a display between 7 inches and 8 inches and will be reportedly priced between $199 and $299.
iPad Mini is believed to challenge Amazon’s Kindle Fire HD tablet and Google’s Nexus 7, both of which feature 7-inch screens and re sold at $199. The first Kindle Fire, released last year, went on to grab about a fifth of the US tablet market, reports IBN Live.
The invitations came a few days after a new wave of rumors surfaces, suggesting that the anticipated tablet will only come in a Wi-Fi version – but there will also be a revised version of the iPad with 4G connectivity compatible with the UK’s Everything Everywhere network.
It was also reported that iPad Mini wouldn’t feature a high-definition Retina display found on the full-size tablet, as the Cupertino based company seeks ways to cut costs by eliminating components that would squeeze profit margins.
Earlier this year a survey was conducted which showed that 52 percent of interviewees suggesting the tablet would go on sale at a price of $250-$300, but 3G wireless network connectivity was among the most-anticipated features.
If the rumors prove true, eWeek writes, and the smaller iPad is on the way, Apple is betting the tablet will be a big hit with consumers: earlier rumors claimed that the iPhone maker has ordered 10 million of the smaller iPads to be produced.
Testimony released in Apple’s trial with Samsung earlier this year showed that the Cupertino based tech giant had previously discussed a possibility of building a smaller version of its popular iPad.
However the September’s launch of the iPhone 5, which features a longer screen, could may suggest that Apple has some other form factor in mind for a smaller tablet, The Guardian writes.
By the way, Steve Jobs, who died last year, went public saying that the introduction of a 7-inch tablet would be “dead on arrival” and users would need “sandpaper to shrink their fingers for an optimized experience.”
“While one could increase the resolution of the display to make up for some of the difference, it is meaningless unless your tablet also includes sandpaper so that the user can sand down their fingers to around one-quarter of their present size,” Jobs said at the time.