Apple reportedly still considering Retina iPad mini, perhaps multi-colored, for this fall

Apple reportedly considering Retina iPad mini for this fall

The long rumored Retina iPad mini might become reality this fall according to yet more rumors about Apple's small-sized tablet. This time the supplier-based reporting comes by way of Lorraine Luk of the Wall Street Journal:

Apple is working with suppliers in Asia on its next iPad mini with a high-resolution "retina" display, unlike the current iPad mini that comes with a lower-resolution screen, the people said. The size of the new tablet will likely be the same as the current 7.9-inch model, which was released in November last year. Apple has also been contemplating multiple color back covers for the new tablet, they said.

I've been hearing about the Retina iPad mini since January of this year. However, bringing it from prototype to production has seemingly been non-trivial, given the power demands and price-points of the components. Apple is an aggressive company - they shipped two full-sized iPads last year, after all - and it seems almost certain they'll launch a Retina iPad mini as soon as they can get the requisite amount of battery life out of it, and sell it for acceptable margins.

Color is something that makes sense as well, given Apple has historically used color to differentiate their less expensive iPods and more recently, the iPod touch, and given the rumors of colored iPhone 5c on the horizon.

Rumors of a non-Retina, yet still upgraded iPad mini may be the more conservative plan if Apple can't get the Retina mini to market in time for the holidays, or it might be a continuation of what they did with the iPad 2 when the iPad 3 went Retina - offer a new version of the old tablet at a lower price point to take even more oxygen out of the space.

Either way, it's tough to imagine Apple won't be doing something interesting with the iPad mini and soon. Which would you prefer, a cheaper standard resolution iPad mini, or a Retina iPad mini at the same or similar price?

Source: Wall Street Journal

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Rene Ritchie

EiC of iMore, EP of Mobile Nations, Apple analyst, co-host of Debug, Iterate, Vector, Review, and MacBreak Weekly podcasts. Cook, grappler, photon wrangler. Follow him on Twitter and Google+.

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Reader comments

Apple reportedly still considering Retina iPad mini, perhaps multi-colored, for this fall


Makes sense. After the new Nexus7, Apple would be hard-pressed to justify how their ipad mini is the superior product if it lacks a retina display.

I bet they'll do what they did with the iPad 2 and 3. The iPad mini will drop to maybe $299 and the retina mini will be about $349. They'll sell both to keep more people buying them.

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seems crazy when the nexus 7 has a retina caliber screen at $229. I don't see how they can come in at $299 let alone $349.

You still don't see how? I'd be surprised if a retina ipad mini didn't start at 399. Apple has to have their margin and even at that price it will be a low one.

Why would they raise the price $70 if they kept the same price point between 2 and 3? $399 for a 16GB won't fly.

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16GB won't fly anymore no matter how you look at it, but I bet that Apple is already looking for a way to screw with their customers either by price ($329), flash storage (16GB) or normal display. Then prepare for iPad Mini 2.5 in June 2014.
Retina iPad Mini with 32GB should cost $329-349, instead they'll probably include a fingerprint sensor for $7 and droll at how great it is. I'll take the normal 32GB Mini with A6 chip for $299 (if they release such a model of course).

I'd rather Apple upgrade the current iPad mini's internals than go to Retina if they're not 100% confident in it. We don't need an iPad 3 version of the mini that's so bad it has to be replaced in 6 months.

I have a 3rd gen iPad which works perfectly. Not sure what the "so bad" is that you're referring to.

Personally, my wife's iPad 3 is working perfectly too and we got it Day 1. The problem with it is it gets extremely hot. I'm talking impossible to hold in bare hands hot. She plays a lot of games and it heats up instantly. It's widely considered the "worst" iPad but that doesn't mean it's horrible. It was just a bit premature, I think.

I have both the iPad 3 and te iPad 4, and can verify that the iPad 3 gets really hot whenever it renders 3D graphics. The iPad 4 does not, its always cool, so Apple obviously messed up on the 3 and came up with a hasty solution 6 months later. The iPad 3 also has chronic sound problems, just go to the Apple Support forum and look it up.

I hope apple has the super retina display for ipad mini, i love it, the design is very beautiful, and give me some feature, killing feature

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I think the basic Apple can do to new iPad mini is to offer retina display ..otherwise I really don't see how it can compete with the like of nexus 7..which at the moment is far superior offering..

They absolutely have to bring out a retina display iPad mini. Both the Nexus 7 and new LG G-Pad has got full HD displays.

Don't rule out an iPad mini "C" with coloured backs.

If Apple want to get more battery life; just go with the IGZO sharp display. Uses up to 50% less power! Might be too expensive for the pricing of it to be competitive to the Nexus 7 but Apple could do it still and the cream of the crop would buy it along with business users. $500 for the base price is not a big deal to these people! But it has to have 802.11 ac and A7 CPU with 4GBs in it!

If Apple skip the retina display claiming that they do not have the know it all to make one; Apple will be the laughing stock of the entire tech world since Nexus 7 2013 has been in the market place for almost 4 months now; and Apple could just have purchase a Nexus 7 and see how Google has done it!