Apple reportedly readying Retina iPad mini for October 22 event

While it's been widely rumored for a while now that the iPad 5 would get the iPad mini's thinner, lighter design this year, rumors about the iPad mini getting the full-sized iPad's Retina display have been split down the middle - some "yes", some "no", some simply "hope so". Daisuke Wakabayashi and Ian Sherr, however, seem to think it's a done deal. From the Wall Street Journal:

Apple is now readying a revamped iPad Mini with a high-resolution "retina" display. It's also working on a thinner, lighter version of its standard 9.7-inch iPad, using a thin film instead of the glass found in existing models, based on information from the company's parts suppliers.

Given the power of the Apple A7 chipset, it's unlikely there'll be the same "Retina tax" paid by the iPad 3, which always felt like it was running on redline. That debt's been paid off. What remains a challenge for both a lighter iPad 5 and a Retina iPad 2 is battery life. Apple historically hasn't been willing to ship a tablet with under 10 hours of battery life, even going so far as to slightly increase the thickness and weight of the full-sized iPad when it went Retina in 2012.

Those 2048x1536 pixel screens require a lot of backlight and a lot of GPU power to push around. Since battery chemistry isn't getting much better, Apple has to rely on everything else, including advances in lighting, screen technology, and processor architecture.

If Apple has succeeded in getting both the iPad 5 slimmed down, and the iPad mini 2 Retina'd up, it'll be interesting to see what breakthroughs they've had, and what compromises they've had to make.

We'll find out on October 22. In the meantime, anyone starting to believe?

Source: Wall Street Journal