The iPad mini with Retina display is finally here now that Apple managed to surprise us all by making units available to the Apple Store Online last night. The launch comes sooner than many expected, but if you’re hoping to run down to the Apple Store and pick up a new Mini you’re sure to be disappointed.
Apple sent out an official press release this morning to announce the immediate availability of Retina iPad mini units and also clarified that units will only be available for purchase from the Apple Store Online, or via the Personal Pickup option that allows users to check if local Apple Stores have available units on hand to pick up after ordering.
“The response to iPad Air has been incredible, and we’re excited for customers to experience the new iPad mini with Retina display,” said Philip Schiller, Apple’s senior vice president of Worldwide Marketing. “We think customers will love both of these thin, light, powerful new iPads, and we’re working hard to get as many as we can in the hands of our customers.”
Most Apple Stores in the U.S. are reporting no availability for new Retina iPad mini units, but it appears that stores outside of the U.S. may have limited supply, as Federico Viticci at MacStories reports he was able to purchase a Retina iPad mini from the Apple Store Online and then confirm with his local Apple Store in Italy that units are available to pick up today.
Initial supply of the Retina iPad mini is expected to be low throughout the holiday season, so it might take some time before Apple retail stores are able to meet demand. Those eager to get their hands on the new iPad mini can check for supply at their local carrier store too, according to the release by Apple:
“iPad mini with Retina display is available to order through the Apple Online Store(www.apple.com) to ship or through Personal Pickup at Apple’s retail stores, and through AT&T, Sprint, T-Mobile, Verizon Wireless and select Apple Authorized Resellers. “
Shipping estimates for the 64GB and 128GB Retina iPad minis have slipped to 5-10 business days, however both 16GB and 32GB Wifi-only units still appear to be plentiful with shipping estimates still holding strong at 1-3 business days.