Apple’s ‘smaller iPad due for Christmas’
APPLE is to unveil a smaller, 7" iPad in time for Christmas, sources have claimed.
The move would set up a battle between Apple’s iPad, Amazon's Kindle Fire and Google’s Nexus 7 tablet, announced last week in San Francisco.
The new model will have a screen that’s 7 inches to 8 inches diagonally, less than the current 9.7-inch version, Bloomberg claimed.
Apple is expected to announce new products in October, including a new iPhone. The 7” iPad is unlikely to have the “retina display” high definition screen of the full-size version. It may, however, have the same number of pixels as the iPad 2.
Smaller tablets, such as Amazon’s Kindle Fire, have sold well by focusing on media consumption, such as books, TV and film bought direct from Amazon. Google is hoping that its tablet, at £159, will appeal to a similar market. Launching in the UK from July 17, it is already available to order while the Kindle Fire has yet to launch outside America.
“It would be the competitors’ worst nightmare,” Shaw Wu, an analyst at Sterne Agee and Leach told Bloomberg. “The ball is in Apple’s court.”
The tablet market, despite Apple’s huge success with the iPad, is still regarded as full of opportunities for new players. It is expected to grow to $66.4 billion this year. Apple currently has 61 per cent of the market.
As well as the 7” devices from Google and Amazon, Microsoft is also focusing on a new tablet, called Surface, that will be sold when it releases Windows 8 in October.
Competing with a lower-priced iPad will be challenging, Wu told Bloomberg. Apple benefits from its own retail network, while the platform has more than 225,000 apps that have been tailored specifically for the current iPad.