7.85-inch iPad – ‘this generations iPod Touch’

It is coming. Apple and Kindle have locked horns in tablet race to smash out the “better” 7-incher of this generation. According to the New York Times, Apple’s competitors have all but forced the Cupertino giant into creating an iPad Mini.

The Nexus 7, the new Kindle Fire and the heavily rumoured iPad Mini are neck in neck to become the 7.something-inch device that eager gadget lovers will be keen to lap up. Amazon is definitely (maybe) working on a larger Kindle Fire but the world’s oldest online bookstore is not keen on divulging any details.

If Apple does crap out a smaller iPad, its position will be that of a media-focused tablet. According to analysts, “Apple could even position it as a next-generation version of the iPod Touch, rather than as an iPad mini.”

Apple’s tiny iPad plans are nefariousness at best. Dearly departed Steve Jobs hated the idea of an iPad Mini, saying that “There are clear limits of how close you can physically place elements on a touch screen before users cannot reliably tap, flick or pinch them. This is one of the key reasons we think the 10-inch screen size is the minimum size required to create great tablet apps.” But according to an anonymous engineer at Apple, the iPad prototype was a 7-inch device.

With Jobs now selling iPhones to angels, Apple’s current plans are to devour the market whole by offering a device for every budget. At a guess, we’d say that the cheapest iPad Mini would have to retail for US$200 to compete with the Nexus 7 and Kindle Fire.

We like the idea of the iPad Mini being heralded as the new iPod Touch. The iPod Touch is the iPhone’s media device buddy, so a media-focused equivalent of the big-boy iPad just makes sense, dammit.

So it’s size and price that will win the war.

Steven Norris: grumpy curmudgeon


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