Rumors saying Apple is planning a smaller version of the iPad won’t die, and a new report sheds more light on the rumored product. Fueling past rumors that Apple is interested in creating a 7-inch iPad at a cheaper price point, iMore claims that the company is planning a 7-inch iPad for release this October alongside the next-gen iPhone.
But that’s not all! The most interesting claim is that the upcoming 7-inch iPad will be priced between $200-$250. Also, the tablet will feature a Retina display like the third-gen iPad, keeping the same 2048×1536 resolution, according to the report.
Apple will be going forward with the 7-inch iPad, currently targeting an October 2012 release alongside the new iPhone, and — here’s the killer — at a $200 to $250 price point. According to our source, which has proven reliable in the past, the reason for such aggressive pricing is to do to the tablet market what Apple did to the MP3 market in 2004 with the expansion of the iPod product line — leave absolutely no space for competitors.
The report goes on to say that the “7-inch iPad will be identical to the current 9.7-inch iPad, just scaled down.” iMore’s source hasn’t provided the exact dimensions, but the tablet will come with lower storage capacity — 8GB for the cheapest $200-$250 model.
A Retina display-equipped 7-inch iPad would have the same pixel density of the iPhone 4S at around 326 ppi, according to the report. Arguments have been made that Apple wouldn’t put a Retina display in a cheaper iPad to conserve costs, but iMore makes it sound like the company has figured out a way to make the technology cost effective.
The first thing that comes to mind at the prospect of a $200 7-inch iPad is the current iPod touch. Why would Apple need to create a product so close to what it has already? Will the iPod touch be killed off? iMore says that “Apple won’t be replacing the iPod touch with the 7-inch iPad, both devices will remain in the product lineup.” Regardless, the iOS device product line will be significantly shaken up if a 7-inch iPad is indeed coming.
Apple usually continues selling its last-gen iPad for $100 cheaper when a new model comes out, but this 7-inch device would be a much more significant price change. If Apple did release such a product, the iPad’s competitors would likely fall into a panic. How would there be room for any other tablet to survive?
iMore has proven to be an accurate source of Apple rumors in the past by pinpointing the third-gen iPad launch date and LTE networking. The site has also claimed that the next iPhone is set for an October 2012 release, which falls in line with mainstream consensus.