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