iPad Mini 2 release date, price, features & specs rumours
Posted on 10 May 2013 at 15:02, by David Ludlow
Our iPad Mini 2 release date, specs, price and news rumours article is updated regularly, so check back often for the latest updates. Updated on 10th May with new launch information.
While it was an excellent product and the smaller size opened up the iPad to a new group of people, it lacked some of the features that the full iPad 4 had, including a retina display. So, although the mini only went on sale in November, the rumour mill has been predicting a brand-new iPad Mini 2, with higher specifications.
IPAD MINI 2 RELEASE DATE
While the rumoured release dates for Apple's other upcoming products state a wide-range of months, an October launch is all that's been mentioned for the iPad Mini. This makes a lot of sense, as it means the iPad Mini 2 would follow on a year after the original Mini launched. This is typically Apple's release schedule for tablets, so unless something major changes, that's what we should expect.
It also follow information from Tim Cook. On a recent earnings call with investors, the Apple CEO said: "Our teams are hard at work on some amazing new hardware, software, and services that we can’t wait to introduce this fall and throughout 2014."
From what Cook has said, a launch date before Autumn for any major Apple product would appear to be out of the question. That's not to say that Apple couldn't and wouldn't surprise us with something, but given that information and the company's usual yearly-release schedule, we'd expect the iPad Mini 2 around October.
IPAD MINI 2 SCREEN
One of the supposed 'disappointments' with the iPad Mini was its resolution of 1,024x768. Compared to the Nexus 7, which has a resolution of 1,280x800 the iPad loses out on paper. In practice, most reviews didn't quite say this, as it depends on the task. For example, web browsing in portrait mode, the iPad Mini 2 fits more on screen, as it doesn't have the permanent browser furniture of Android.
Still, more is often seen as better by people, so we'd be surprised if Apple didn't up the resolution for the iPad Mini 2. According to BrightWire, AU Optronics is manufacturing a 7.9in screen with a resolution of 2,048x1,536. This would give the iPad Mini 2 a pixel density of 324ppi, just behind the iPhone 5's 326ppi.
This resolution makes a lot of sense, as it's the same as on the iPad 4, which means that all existing apps will work with it. However, as Apple has said that retina means you can't see individual pixels on a screen and the iPad 4 has a retina display, the same resolution on a 7.9in screen is more than retina. In other words, in Apple's definition, it's pointless. That said, no company is immune to peer pressure and if its competition is going to sell products based on high screen resolutions, Apple may feel that it needs to go the same way with the iPad 2. In this kind of market, headline figures are often the ones that count, even if the actual meaning is a little pointless.
So, it may be that the iPad Mini 2 gets the same resolution purely for compatibility, but it may end up with a slightly lower resolution than the iPad 4. After all, the 13-inch MacBook Pro with Retina Display has a slightly lower resolution than the 15-inch MacBook Pro with Retina.
Given all the odds, we'd say that the iPad Mini 2 will end up with the same resolution as the full-size iPad. That way, Apple only has to get developers to write apps for the one screen resolution. Apple has always been about getting the best experience on its iOS devices, so having apps that fit the screen resolution of every device is very important.
IPAD MINI 2 DESIGN
All of the talk about the iPad 5 is that it'll take its design cues from the iPad Mini. With that in mind, we wouldn’t expect the iPad Mini to change very much. In fact, we'd say that it'll use roughly the same case with perhaps a design tweak to two.
Our predictions are exactly what the latest rumours say, with Apple apparently now looking at a slimmer case for the iPad Mini 2. A lot of the thickness of the current tablet is down to the size of the battery in it. Apple can't do a lot about that, unless it wants to trade off battery power for size and weight, but we can't see it going that way.
More likely, Apple will look at the front. It's been rumoured that Sharp IGZO screen technology could make for a thinner device. Apple is also rumoured to be looking at different materials for the front glass and bezel. This should let the company make its next tablet a couple of millimetres thinner and a few grams lighter. Admittedly, this kind of change is likely to be better from Apple's point of view as it could lead to cheaper shipping costs.
IPAD MINI 2 PROCESSOR
As well as having the same resolution as the iPad 2, the iPad Mini had the same processor, a dual-core Apple A5. If it gets a higher resolution screen, that's going to require a faster graphics processor, so the iPad Mini 2 could well get the Apple A6X processor used in the iPad 4.
However, Apple is also at work on a replacement, the Apple A7. It may be that it decides to even its entire product line out with the same processor, giving the smaller tablet the same processing power as its big brother.
IPAD MINI 2 STORAGE
We'd expect the iPad Mini 2 to have the same storage options before, but with the addition of a 128GB model a possibility. Apple launched the 128GB iPad 4 recently, which means it has the chips available. Now, there's more argument to have more storage on the larger iPad, but given it has the technology, why not offer the iPad Mini with the same storage options?
IPAD MINI 2 PRICE
Thanks to Apple's incredibly consistent pricing, you'd expect the iPad Mini 2 to cost exactly the same as the iPad Mini. That means for the Wi-Fi models, £269 for the 16GB version, £349 for the 32GB version and £429 for the 64GB version. We correctly guessed the price of the 128GB iPad 4, so if the iPad Mini follows the same pricing structure, a 128GB version would cost £509. Expect to pay £100 more for the equivalent Wi-Fi + Cellular model.
Given the strong competition for small tablets, it could be that Apple decides to reduce the price of its products, with a rumoured starting price of $299 for the 16GB Wi-Fi model. There's no easy conversion to UK pounds, but that should translate as around £259 in the UK, which would put the iPad Mini 2 at a similar price to the Google Nexus 7.
Is it worth waiting for iPad mini
While a lot has been said that iPad mini doesn't carry Apple's best display - Retina technology, I would say that display is no second on iPad mini when compared to full sized iPad. Mini at 8 inches packs the same screen resolution as the full sized iPad and hence iPad mini is a bet. Also, if you wish to see how is it ferrying compared to the famous Android tablet - Samsung Galaxy Tab 2, checkout this cool place http://www.brandcollage.com/faceoff/apple-ipad-min
By uzinuzin on 27 May 2013
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