Apple testing a smaller 8-inch iPad according to The Wall Street Journal

Apple is testing an 8-inch iPad according to a report in the WSJ. Apparently Apple is working with component suppliers in Asia to test out a new size iPad with a smaller screen. According to the report, Apple wants to broaden its product pipeline to maintain its dominant position in the tablet market.

Officials at some of Apple's suppliers, who declined to be named, said the Cupertino, Calif.-based company has shown them screen designs for a new device with a screen size of around 8-inches, and said it is qualifying suppliers for it. Apple's latest tablet, the iPad 2, comes with a 9.7-inch screen. One person said the smaller device will have a similar resolution screen as the iPad 2. Apple is working with screen makers including Taiwan-based AU Optronics Co. and LG Display Co. of South Korea to supply the test panels, the person said.

Apple has always stated that tablet devices with smaller screens than the iPad would not deliver the same experience for its users. However the fact that Apple is now testing smaller sized iPad devices should not really come as that much of a surprise. We are sure Apple tests all sizes of screens for its devices but that does not mean any of them will actually be released. On the other hand, Apple may be looking into releasing a cheaper model iPad to enhance its appeal to those on a budget.

Source: WSJ

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UK editor at iMore, mobile technology lover and air conditioning design engineer.

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Reader comments

Apple testing a smaller 8-inch iPad according to The Wall Street Journal


Nooooo! 8" is not a big enough size difference! I need a 7" iPad that will actually fit in some jacket pockets!!! 8" is way too close to the normal iPad size! :(

I love my playbook (although waiting for OS2.0), and my wife loves her iPad2.
To each their own...

Yeah right. It'll propel them further. How could releasing a budget iPad end apple? They are the most profitable organization in the world.

I really don't understand the use of these in-between multiple size products. I don't see how an 8 inch iPad would have any advantages to the 9.7 inch. It wouldn't be that much more portable. They need to just stick to one size for tablet and one size for phone. If anything call the iPod touch the iPad Mini.

I cant see Apple making a "budget model" of anything. They focus purely on the experience a person gains from the device.

your right of Apple not making a budget model.. but thats because they purely want to take our money. Everyone thought that there were going to be 2 iphones released last year which was an iphone4s for the lower budget people and the iphone 5 for those who can afford the higher class phone. Apple played it smart to release only the 4s as they knew everyone would end up buying it. if they released both then no one would have bought the 4s..all in all Apple knows how to play with gullible consumers and whatever they put out, people will buy it no matter what.

This won't matter much if China bans the export of iPads, due to Proview contesting use of the iPad name. This is a situation Apple can't sue their way out of.

There is no smaller iPad and if you want a budget iPad, you can go buy a 1st gen iPad and the ipad2 after the iPad 3 is released. I'm so sick of these stupid smaller iPad rumors. News and blog sites should dismiss them until cold hard proof has been released.

I could see a 5-7" "ipads" coming from Apple. They'd probably name it their apple tv or iReader or something else though.
Apple said a tablet experience wouldn't be great less than 10". They didn't say anything about video or reading. Plus there's rumors of them trying out different resolutions, iTV rumors which would need a remote, etc.
Apple went pretty heavy into iBooks, it'd be silly not to have a book sized reader.

I highly doubt they will ever come out with an 8 inch iPad. I mean whats the point, remember people they sold what like 15 million iPads last quarter. There is no reason for them to make this just more bad info getting sent to WSJ.

quad-core CPU, 8 inch screen, LTE data?
battery life probably between 20 to 30 minutes....
I'll stick with my 16gb Wifi iPad2 thank you very much.
I know its all rumor, nothing based on fact but quad core, come on really!

I couldn't agree more.
I honestly don't see the point of an 8in tablet. I see the appeal to a 7 in but 8 is just to close to really make a huge difference. I can't see this possibly being true.

According to iMore's article, 8" with same resolution as iPad 2, so no Retina? Makes no sense at all. I would say no. Anybody ask Siri?

When I see people on the subway playing with their damn near 10 inch iPad I just think of how much of a over kill it is. To me it's not 100% portable as a phone or a kindle and quite honestly I fear theft.
Apple usually shoots down ideas but end up doing exactly what they said they couldn't or something similar so I wouldn't be surprised.
Price point : between high end iPhone 4 and low end iPad 2.

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