Apple Announces iPad Mini for $329 and Fourth-Generation iPad

With the $329 iPad Mini, Apple is betting that slim design, a larger screen and a bigger app selection can lure people away from other small tablets.

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With the $329 iPad Mini, Apple is betting that slim design, a larger screen and a bigger app selection can lure people away from other small tablets.

The iPad Mini has a 7.9-inch, 1024-by-768 resolution display. Although it’s smaller than the 9.7-inch display on current iPads, it has the same 1024-by-768 resolution as Apple’s first- and second-generation tablets. That means it’s wider than competing 7-inch tablets, and it can run all the same apps as current iPads.

The app compatibility is important, considering that tablet-optimized apps are the iPad’s greatest strength over competing tablets. During a press event, Apple CEO Tim Cook noted that the iTunes App Store now has more than 275,000 iPad apps that have been optimized for the larger display.

The iPad Mini looks a lot like the leaked cases and product renders that have been popping up for the last few months. It’s 7.2 mm thick, making it 23 percent thinner than the larger iPad, and it’s 53 percent lighter, at 0.68 pounds. (Apple says the iPad Mini is as thin as a pencil and as light as a pad of paper.)

Other specs include an A5 processor, HD front-facing camera, a 5-megapixel rear camera and optional 4G LTE connectivity. The iPad Mini gets 10 hours of battery life, and uses the same Lightning connector found in the iPhone 5.

Prices for the iPad Mini start at $329 with 16 GB of storage and Wi-Fi; 32 GB and 64 GB models are available for $429 and $529, respectively, and 4G LTE costs an additional $130. It’ll be available in black or white, and has its own optional Smart Covers, similar to those of the larger iPad. The price leaves a bit of breathing room for $200 tablets such as Google’s Nexus 7, Amazon’s Kindle Fire HD and Barnes & Noble’s Nook HD.

Pre-orders for the iPad Mini begin on Friday. The Wi-Fi version goes on sale November 2, and the 4G LTE version will arrive two weeks later in the U.S. and several other countries.

Apple also announced a fourth-generation iPad, though it’s not a major overhaul over the iPad that launched earlier this year. The new iPad has a faster Apple A6x chip, expanded LTE support (including Sprint in the United States), dual-channel Wi-Fi and the smaller Lightning connector that launched with the new iPhone. Pricing is the same as earlier iPads, starting at $499 for 16 GB with Wi-Fi, and $629 with 4G LTE.

New iPads weren’t the only topic during Apple’s press conference. The company also announced a 13-inch MacBook Pro with Retina Display, a slimmer iMac and a new Mac Mini.

5 comments
FernandoBorges
FernandoBorges

Welcome to the beginning of the fall of the Apple. It's soooo NewTonian. Muahahahhaha

bob3905
bob3905

It cost more than similar tablets on the market. As usual it will sell mainly to fans of everything Apple. I can't see wasting money on it.

mrxexon
mrxexon

This is a lot of money for something that will be obsolete by summer. And you still can't get around the fact that these things have small screens that make most people squint. Remember 14 inch computer monitors? That's why we all wear glasses now.

I'll wait until these things interface with my mind's eye and use my eyeball as an 80 megapixal camera.

 Beware of keeping up with the technological Jones's.

x

brenro12
brenro12

The existing crop of 7 inch tablets will fit in a cargo pocket. This will not. I think that's a major miscalculation.

GaryMcCray
GaryMcCray

For a few weeks, there have been predictions that Apple would introduce a 16 gb IPad Mini for $329.00 with hundred dollar price increments for each size larger. The Mini also as predicted is a carbon copy of the IPad 2 only smaller with a low 1024 x 768 resolution display.

At this pricing the Mini is very non-competitive with the $200.00 16 gb and $250.00 32 gb Amazon HD Fire and to be released on October 29th equivalent Google Nexus 7 tablets which also have considerably higher (HD) resolution screens and excellent software support.

It does not seem that the Mini is going to be a strong influence in the 7" tablet market.

On the other hand, the "Even Newer" Generation 4 full sized IPad features a substantial improvement in performance over the now old "New" IPad and also have it's truly excellent "Retina" ultra high resolution display.

In fact, the full sized "Even Newer" IPad represents a much better value than the Mini in all configurations.

So basically if you want an IPad (and can afford one) get an IPad, other wise get a Fire or a Nexus. (Skip the Mini).