At $329, the iPad mini is Apple’s cheapest iPad by far… but compared to $199 and $249 Android tablets, it’s still pricy in the 7-inch markets.
That might change, though. A new rumor suggests that Apple will release the iPad mini 2 for the low, low price of $249.
The report comes from Citi Research, who don’t seem to have a lot of evidence to go by. CNET reports:
“Supply chain checks by Citi’s Asia-Pac Technology Team suggest a mix shift surprisingly toward Apple’s older iPhone4/4S,” he wrote.
Then added. “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…
The Citi note mentions a comment by Apple Chief Operating Officer Peter Oppenheimer to back up the expected shift to cheaper devices, including the Mini. “We are managing the business for the long term and are willing to trade off short-term profits where we see long-term potential,” Oppenheimer said during the most recent earnings conference call.
I don’t buy it. The iPad mini, even at $329, is still the best-selling iPad out there. Apple’s making gobs of money on the iPad mini 2, and they aren’t going to cut their profit margins to sell it at $249, especially with an iPad mini with Retina Display in the pipeline, which will only cost more to make.
I could see the price of the original iPad mini sinking to $249 or even $199 after the iPad mini with Retina Display debuts, but no way does Apple drop the price of the mini across the board. What do you think?