10 million iPad minis to 'outshine' their big brother this quarter
Will we learn more on October 17? Maybe so, maybe not
Reports have surfaced that Apple is planning for over 10 million iPad minis – or whatever they'll be called – to be available in the fourth quarter of this year, and that the design of the new 7.85-inch fondleslab could "outshine" its bigger brother, the iPad itself.
The Wall Street Jounal reported on Sunday that sources among Asian parts suppliers have said that they've received orders for more than 10 million of the smaller iPads – that's a substantially higher number than the six million original Kindle Fires that at least one analyst said that Amazon sold last holiday season.
Why such a high number? Well, another analyst cites remarks by component-maker sources that led him to a high opinion of the still-vaporous device. "Apple did not skimp on the aesthetics of the much anticipated 'iPad Mini'," Brian White of Topeka Capital Markets told AllThingsD. "In fact, we believe the 'iPad Mini' could outshine the new iPad in terms of how the device feels in a consumer's hands."
Considering that one of the complaints The Reg had about the original iPad was that it was just too darn heavy, a lighter fondleslab would most certainly feel better in our critical hands.
That "outshining" has its downsides, however. White reports that those same component suppliers told him that the li'l thing is a bear to manufacture. "The new 'iPad Mini' is more challenging to produce than prior iPad iterations," he said. "We believe supply will initially be constrained."
Ten million doesn't sound all that "constrained" to this reporter, but perhaps that high figure is merely a target, and supplies of the new, smaller iPad will be low at first, then ramp up in volume as manufactuing procedures are tweaked and if disgruntled assembly-line workers can be mollified.
Of course, as with all rumors of this type, grains of salt are to be liberally distributed to any and all Reg readers reading these and other speculations. Rumors of a smaller iPad have been kicking around since less than a week after the original iPad went on sale on April 4, 2010. They resurfaced last October, this September, and many times in between. An announcement date of a mere nine days from now – October 17 – has even been mooted, with invitations to that event said to be sent this Wednesday.
Apple, of course, is saying nothing. True to the code of Br'er Fox, CEO Time Cook, "he lay low." ®
The sound of crickets chirping.
A soft breeze rolls some tumbleweed across the dusty, empty street.
In the distance, a lone coyote howls at the moon, over the sad, shivering, sobs of a wannabe comedian who has not only utterly failed to be funny on the internet, but who also laughed at his own pathetic "joke".
I believe that Apple will sell 100 million of whatever it is they are going to release.
I believe that Apple will sell 200 million of whatever it is they are going to release - I've upwardised my estimate since writing the title - and they'll sell this much in the first hour.
By the end of November, literally every person with hands in the entire western world (and this includes dogs and horses) will own one of these new and improved iDevices. Once we all own this paean of shininess, we'll simultaneously wonder how we ever did with whatever version or size came before this one, as well as eagerly awaiting our next Apple based opportunity to fondle.
I can hardly wait. Again.
Re: Not buying it
With the likes of Google's Nexus 7 and Amazon's Kindle Fire already in this market segment, Apple cannot afford to alienate themselves with too big a premium for their product. The result is, as you point out, the iPad Mini will cannibalise sales of the iPad 3 and potentially reduce overall margin. The problem is that Apple are in desperate need of a 'new' product. The iPhone and iPad are no longer the cash cows they once were and the market has finally caught up with them. With the Board's attention seemingly being averted from innovation and focussed towards monetising their patent portfolio, a low(er) margin iPad Mini has the potential to further dampen Apple's share price and will be seen as a risky move by anal-ists.
Re: I believe that Apple will sell 100 million of whatever it is they are going to release.
Alternatively... Apple will only sell 9 million of these devices on launch weekend and the product will be labeled a failure for only shipping 9 million not some other really large number.
Re: To be accompanied
There is a reason they're going for 7.85 inches rather than just 7.8. It's that 0.05 inches that's the key to design awesomeness that Apple inspires.