Idle iPad Mini Thought

Nothing more.

The iPhone 5 event was already overloaded with content. They rolled out the iPhone 5, showed off a completely revamped Nano and Touch, and there was a brand-new dock connector that needed explaining. This in addition to the usual parade of data about how successful the Apple Stores and everything else are…and three songs from Foo Fighters.

My idle thought is this: if Apple were indeed planning to hold an iPad Mini event in October, do you think maybe they would waited until then to announce the revamped iTunes Store and the new edition of iTunes? They could have ended the spiel by saying “And both of these things are rolling out today” instead of “They’ll be available starting in October.”

The iPod Touch and Shuffle won’t be released until October, either. But preorders started almost immediately (so Apple could get a jump on holiday buying). It makes perfect sense for those products to have been included in the September event. But why the other two?

It just seems…odd…that Apple didn’t save them for an October event that was already locked and loaded, instead of adding iTunes and the Store to an already packed September 12 program.

Those two announcements were just as heavily overshadowed by the iPhone 5 news as they would have been by an iPad Mini unveiling. So it’s not like those products were better served by pairing them with the iPhone.

(The only solid explanation that’s occurred to me: Apple has to share advance information about the new Store and the new iTunes with enough outsiders that a leak was inevitable. Better to make an official announcement and get ahead of the leaks.)

I still have no firsthand info about concrete plans to release a smaller iPad, yea or nay. I’m just wondering if this “iPad Mini in October” rumor is as rock-solid as many people think it is.

Plus, just as a sailor knows that land is just over the horizon when he starts to see birds, I keep looking out for some specific Early Signs that almost always precede a major Apple announcement. I haven’t seen those yet. If I still haven’t seen them by the first week in October…hmm.

Just a thought.

19 replies
  1. John Sextro
    John Sextro says:

    Andy, I just said something very similar on my iOS Development podcast last night. A month before the iPhone 5 announcement people had the thing assembled from parts acquired from Chinese suppliers and what they built was dead on. If we are getting an iPad mini, someone would have it assembled by now, right?? My prediction, they’re won’t be an iPad mini announced in October or anytime in 2012.

  2. Richard
    Richard says:

    Although the Touch and the ipad mini have different uses and probably different users , I do have a problem with believing that Apple would launch an ipad mini that has a similar price as a Touch. Because no matter how I look at it, the Touch and iPad mini are in some way similar but at the same time the ipad mini will be a lot bigger.

    Having said all that, theoretically the iphone and ipad are similar in price too desplte that the ipad is a lot bigger so who knows….

  3. John
    John says:

    I had the same thought this morning. It’s “October” in just four days and all the rumbles and rumors about a mini iPad event that preceded the September 12 iPhone unveiling has subsided almost entirely. Part of it may be the distraction of the new phone – why bother with speculation when there’s something actual to play with – but perhaps there’s simply no there there.

  4. Andrew Gibson
    Andrew Gibson says:

    When the new iPod touch was unveiled with a £259 price tag here in the uk I couldn’t believe it
    1 that’s very expensive for a touch.
    2 make me wonder where an iPad mini would fit in their existing product price range.

  5. Pete
    Pete says:

    My 2c:
    The iPod touch and iTunes were brought forward to the iPhone event because there were no surprises about the iPhone 5.
    Everything had already been leaked or previewed at WWDC.
    And as Andrew Gibson said, where would a mini iPad fit next to this new iPod Touch? I call iPod touch as the mini iPad.

  6. John Baxter
    John Baxter says:

    The “iPad Mini” sneaks off into the forest under the cover of the civilized discussion about Maps in iPhone 5.

  7. Phil W.
    Phil W. says:

    7in tablets will sell like hotcakes for Xmas. If Apple wants a piece of the pie, they’ll showcase something before the close of Oct.

  8. David Austin
    David Austin says:

    ipad mini held over because of screen production issues.
    Quality mass production of the new screen proving problematical.
    Just look what happened to the Nexus7.
    Apple would NEVER release a produce that was that buggy (oops I forgot about the new maps :)

  9. A different Andy
    A different Andy says:

    Counterpoint: They have so much stuff to announce, they had to get the usual Autumn music event out of the way early, and as the iPod touch is similar to the iPhone it made sense to put them together.

    I take your point, and particularly the price point question raised by commenters trouble me. I really want to see an iPad mini. The only way I can answer the price question is by arguing that the iPad is a different class of device to the Touch, and not a direct competitor (as well as not constrained by the need for very expensive, tiny components).

    As for the lack of leaks: there have been quite a few, especially when you remember that the iPad is a smaller-volume product than the iPhone. What else needs to happen to confirm, do you think? We had official-sounding leaks to the press after the Nexus 7 launch iirc. Seemed like a lock, and in 2012.

  10. Mike Cane
    Mike Cane says:

    Speaking of the pricing argument, look at what Barnes & Noble did today with a 9″ tablet — $269 for 16GB, $299 for 32GBs. Similar to what an iPod Touch is priced at. The only reason for the iPod Touch to command a premium is that it’s basically the only device in its class. Nothing with Android comes close — even Archos stopped producing its smaller “tablets” against it. And Samsung’s Galaxy Players have lo-res screens. All that said, like everyone else I scratch my head over what an iPad Mini would be priced at.

  11. Christopher Rizzo
    Christopher Rizzo says:

    The smaller iPad this October is about as likely as the Apple Television we have been supposed to get for years now. I say if there is a smaller iPad it is in March when then next iPad lands.

  12. NerdNoise
    NerdNoise says:

    You’re scaring me Andy. I had an ipad 2, sold it to get a Canon 60D and have been waiting for this ‘mini’ for a while now. I love the idea of a 7″ ipad with 4G. I do indeed hope that you are wrong on this one, although everything you are saying makes perfect sense.
    “Oh no, I can’t get a 7″ ipad mini this year.” #1stWorldProblems

  13. Bill Goggin
    Bill Goggin says:

    The iPod Touch costs more because it’s not subsidized. Carriers will be interested in subsidizing the iPad mini. I think it could be priced similarly to the Touch. No one will want to take a 7″ tablet out on their run.

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