Sunday, October 21, 2012

iPad mini pricing rumored to begin at $329

The earlier leak of a screenshot from a European inventory system indicated that iPad mini pricing would start at 249 euros, which amounts to (at current conversion rates) about $325, and it looks like that indeed might be the case.

Saturday's report from 9to5Mac cites unnamed sources and says that U.S. pricing for the iPad mini, or whatever Apple will call its smaller, 7.85-inch tablet, will start at $329 for the base model. This puts its price between the base 32GB iPod touch ($299) and the 16GB wi-fi only iPad 2 ($399).

An earlier report used the iPod touch's price at a measuring stick, indicating that the price of the base iPad mini couldn't be as low as some speculated ($249), but would instead have to be above the iPod touch's price (the earlier report estimated $349).

Just as with the iPad, higher storage tiers would have prices that ramp up at $100 increments. Cellular-based iPad minis would have a $130 premium, just as similar models of the iPad do.

The price points of the iPad mini would therefore be the following, assuming this rumor is true:

16GB wi-fi only $329
32GB wi-fi only $429
64GB wi-fi only $529
16GB wi-fi + cellular $459
32GB wi-fi + cellular $559
64GB wi-fi + cellular $659

This places the iPad mini at good price points when compared to the iPad and iPad 2 lines, which are priced as follows:

16GB wi-fi only iPad 2 $399
16GB wi-fi only new iPad $499
64GB wi-fi only iPad mini $529
32GB wi-fi only new iPad $599
64GB wi-fi only new iPad $699
16GB wi-fi + cellular iPad 2 $529
16GB wi-fi + cellular new iPad $629
32GB wi-fi + cellular new iPad $729
64GB wi-fi + cellular new iPad $829

This is, of course, still just speculation. The actual price points won't be known until Apple's Oct. 23 launch event.

Not much is known about the iPad mini, aside from its 7.85-inch screen. It's expected to be non-retina, however, with a 1024 x 768 resolution like the iPad 1.

Rumor is that Apple will release a revamped third-generation iPad ("new" iPad, iPad 3) at the same time as the iPad mini, with slight tweaks, including the new, smaller iPhone 5 Lightning dock connector.

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