Screen yield issues are said to prevent Apple from producing a second-generation iPad mini with Retina display before October according an analyst prediction. According to Ming-Chi Kuo of KGI securities, the so-called “iPad mini 2” will not go into production before October of this year due to production issues associated with cramming enough pixels into the device’s 7.9-inch display to qualify it as a “Retina” caliber screen.
Due to the rumored production issues, Kuo believes that Apple might introduce a more affordable iPad mini in the interim to help boost sales while at the same time fighting off low-priced tablet competition. A low-cost iPad mini according to Kuo would be priced between $199 and $249. He went on to explain that the Cupertino California could take a number of approaches when it came to reducing the cost of building an iPad mini. This included removing the rear camera, reducing internal storage to 8 GB, simplifying the production of the metal casing, or using a more advanced processor to build the A5 processor.
When it came to the full-sized 9.7-inch iPad, Kuo expects that Apple will launch a fifth-generation model with a redesigned frame similar to that of the iPad mini this fall. He doesn’t expect sales of the full-size iPad to increase dramatically because the device doesn’t offer a different user experience from the iPad mini. According to Kuo:
We think Apple will stay competitive in the tablet market over the long term as it releases new and exciting products. But with product launches pushed back and competition getting fiercer, Apple and the iPad supply chain will have to wait until (the fourth quarter of calendar 2013) for significant growth.
Source: KGI Securities via AppleInsider