Steve Jobs once said that tablets with smaller 7-inch screens would be dead on arrival. Customers, Jobs explained, wanted tablets with bigger screens and after much research, Apple deduced that 9.7-inch screens were the most optimal.
And for a while, Jobs’ prediction was spot-on. Many iPad competitors came and went without so much making the tiniest of dents in Apple’s iPad armor.
That was, of course, until Amazon released the Kindle Fire a few months back. Sporting a 7-inch screen, and more importantly, an attractively low $199 pricepoint, the Kindle Fire sold very well and may, in fact, prompt Apple to release a smaller version of the iPad.
Going back a few months, we’ve heard a few rumors claiming that Apple was experimenting with a 7.85-inch iPad with the same 1024×768 resolution as the iPad. And yesterday, the always reliable John Gruber added his two cents to the rumored iPad Mini.
In his Talk Show podcast with Dan Benjamin yesterday, Gruber claims to have been told by “numerous” people that the rumored smaller version of the iPad remained something Apple was “noodling with.”
And when asked about the prospects of a smaller iPad hitting the market, Gruber responded:
Well, I don’t know. What I do know is that they have one in the lab…a 7.85 inch iPad that runs at 1024×768… it’s just like the 9.7″ iPad shrunk down a little bit. Apps wouldn’t need to be recompiled or redesigned to work optimally on it. It’s just the iPad smaller.
Gruber has great sources within Apple so we’re inclined to take this statement at face value.
Previous reports have claimed that the iPad Mini won’t feature a Retina Display and that it will likely be priced in the $249-$299 range.
via The Next Web