It’s been safe to expect a re-vamped iPad Mini to come out in time for the holidays this year. Somewhat more wobbly has been whether or not the next version of the iPad Mini would sport one of Apple’s high-resolution Retina screens found in iPhones and full-size iPads. Rumors of a Retina iPad Mini have been all over the place.
A recent report by the Wall Street Journal, however, claims that the new iPad Mini “will likely feature a high-resolution screen.” The use of the word “likely” – both in the article’s title and its body — seems more of a hedge than usual for a report like this from the Journal.
In other words, let’s not get too emotionally invested just yet. As the article states:
Apple routinely tests various designs and has been known to make changes late in the design process so it is unclear whether the product will make its way to market. However, an iPad mini with a retina display appears more likely, particularly after Google Inc. released its latest Nexus 7 tablet last week with a high-resolution screen.
As my colleague Jared Newman pointed out earlier, a Retina screen for the iPad Mini would require a more powerful processor and graphics chip to push all those pixels around, which in turn would add cost to the production of the product. Assuming Apple – known for pulling in healthy hardware margins – is trying to hit the $329 price point again with the same or better margins, every component counts.