The Most Important FAQs About The iPad Mini*

ipad mini render

Photo: Martin Hajek

The iPad is the most successful tablet on the market right now, but as competitors have proven, there’s huge interest in smaller, cheaper devices too.So in a few weeks we’ll have the so-called iPad Mini, Apple’s attempt to fill the gap in its iOS device lineup. While early leaks on the iPad Mini haven’t been as prevalent as they were for the iPhone 5, we do have a good idea what it’ll be like.

Here’s everything we know so far.

When will it go on sale?
Apple has already leaked to the press that it’ll announce the iPad Mini in October. According to AllThingsD, Apple will announce the tablet on October 23. Apple typically launches products a week to 10 days after the announcement, so we’re looking at a late October or early November release date. The Wall Street Journal reports that the iPad Mini is already in full production

How much will it cost?
This is where things get tricky. There are rumours that the iPad Mini could cost as low as $199, which is the same price as the Nexus 7 and Kindle Fire HD. Others think a $299 price tag is more likely. But don’t expect it to cost more than that as the iPad 2 is still going for $399.

How big will it be?
By all accounts, the iPad Mini will have a 7.85-inch display. That’s slightly larger than the 7-inch display on the Kindle Fire HD and Google’s Nexus 7, but noticeably smaller than the 9.7-inch display on the full-sized iPad.

What kind of screen will it have?
In order to keep costs down, rumours suggest that Apple won’t include the high-resolution Retina display it uses on iPhone and iPads. That means the resolution will be about the same as the iPhone 3GS. In fact, it’s likely Apple will use the same type of screen it used on the 3GS for the iPad Mini.

Will it have 4G?
Maybe not. A recent report from The Guardian says Apple may not include cellular data in the iPad Mini in order to keep costs down. The move makes sense as most cheaper 7-inch tablets are Wi-Fi-only devices.

What will it look like?
We haven’t seen nearly as many leaked photos of the iPad Mini as we saw of the iPhone 5. But each new leak seems to be fairly consistent with the last. Assuming the leaks are legit, it looks like the iPad Mini will have an aluminium backing like the regular iPad and a very thin bezel. 

There’s also speculation that Apple may offer the iPad Mini in different colours, just like the new model of the iPod touch. However, we haven’t seen any clear evidence of multicolored iPad Minis.

Will it really be called the iPad Mini?
Maybe. The “Mini” moniker is just something the tech press has tied to the device. After all, when Apple released a smaller iPod, it called the new device the iPod Mini. But there are some other theories. John Gruber seems to think Apple will call it the iPad Air, a play on the sleek MacBook Air name.

Will it have the same new plug as the iPhone 5?
Almost definitely. Starting with the iPhone 5 and new iPod touch, Apple is transitioning all its iOS gadgets to the new Lightning port. 

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