WSJ: Apple Tells Suppliers to Prepare for Production of New iPad
Rumors and evidence of a new smaller iPad model continue to grow as a new report comes in, claiming that Apple told its component suppliers to prepare for mass production of such a device this week. After citing anonymous sources, The Wall Street Journal
reported that Apple’s Asian component suppliers are preparing for mass production of the smaller iPad in September. The device in question is an iPad with a screen size smaller than 8 inches.
Currently, iPads feature a 9.7 inch display (diagonally) and numerous rumors this year have been pointing toward a so-called “iPad Mini” featuring a 7.85-inch display. According to the report, both LG Display Co. and AU Optronics Co. will be suppliers of displays for the new iteration of the iPad. The report said movement in the supply chain has suggested that the launch of a smaller iPad “appears near.” The WSJ report comes shortly after that of Bloomberg, which also stated that Apple is gearing up to launch a smaller iPad by the end of the year
Previous reports suggested that Apple could announce the new iPad model to be released in October, the same month that the market expected the Cupertino California company to introduce its new iPhone model. Over the past few days, there seems to be a flurry of news
related to Apple’s rumored “iPad Mini.” The device is said to feature a Sharp IGZO display and cost roughly $249 and $299.
The concept behind the whole idea is that Apple would be releasing a smaller tablet to directly compete with the low-end tablet market where Amazon found success with its 7-inch Kindle Fire tablet late last year. Google is also set to enter and compete in the same market next month with the launch of its Nexus 7 tablet
, which is priced at $199 (the same price as that of the Kindle Fire). In this case, Apple’s iPad is considered more of a luxury and not really seen to be in the same league due to its larger size and consequently larger price tag. The “iPad Mini” could help change these issues though.
Source: The Wall Street Journal