A collection of iPad mini rumors claim Apple is prepping a cheaper iPad mini for the fall. The timing is leading some to believe a cheaper iPad mini 2 is the device analysts are talking about, but based on reports this is not likely the case.
A cheaper iPad mini is not likely the iPad mini 2 we have heard of, which may come with a Retina Display, but rather a stripped down version of the iPad mini we already see on store shelves.
If Apple plans to release an iPad mini 2 this fall, it would make almost as much sense to use the older iPad mini as a cheap model, but the company may choose to release a stripped down cheaper iPad mini to compete in this price range without cutting the profit Apple makes on each model.
In the past month multiple analysts are calling for a cheaper iPad mini , pointing to a price below $250. They claim this would help Apple better compete with low-cost competitors like the Nexus 7 and the rumored Nexus 7 2 and others that retail for $199 to $250.
The latest rumor comes from Citi analyst Glen Yeung. CNet shares Yeung’s statement on a cheaper iPad mini;
“And with our expectation of a low-end iPhone slated for September launch, followed by a sub-$250 iPad Mini, we expect this trend to persist.”
This comes roughly a month after KGI Securities analyst Ming-Chi Kuo released a note stating that Apple could offer a cheaper iPad mini before the iPad mini 2 launch. AppleInsider shares the note;
“To cut costs, Apple might push for lower component prices, use a more advanced process to produce the A5 processor, simplify metal casing production, remove the rear camera, cut storage to 8GB and find more component suppliers to lower costs. We think this cheaper iPad mini retail for US$199~249.”
A lower storage, no camera iPad mini sounds plausible next to the new iPod touch with less memory and no camera, which is $70 cheaper than its larger capacity model. 8GB of storage is low by today’s standard, but the iPhone 4 still comes with just 8GB.
Based on Apple’s actions with the iPad 2, It is more likely that the iPad mini 2 will arrive with new features and Apple will cut the price and options of the first iPad mini to fill this void.
Even though Apple just announced a cheaper iPod touch with a stripped down feature set, it’s not clear if the company needs to drop the price of the iPad mini to $250 to compete with the Nexus 7 and other Android tablets. Cost conscious consumers can already pay $279 for a refurbished iPad mini direct from Apple, without giving up on any features. It can also be argued that even with a higher price the iPad mini offers more value than a Nexus 7 tablet.