NYT: Apple iPad Mini is a Real Thing and is Coming This Year

It seems a mite ridiculous that Apple doesn’t have a 7-inch version of the iPad yet; almost all of its competitors in the tablet market offer smaller slates, and for as dominant as the iPad has been, it’s in danger of being undercut by those smaller and less expensive devices. However, rumors have been circulating that Apple is developing a smaller so-called “iPad mini” to compete in that space, including loose lips in the overseas supply chain.

According to the New York Times’ unnamed sources, Apple is indeed planning a 7.85-inch version of the iPad that will cost much less than the larger versions; what’s more, the product will be announced yet this year. The sources indicated that there may be a variety of price points and “functions tailored to various uses”; perhaps a dedicated ereader is in the offing.

The competition: Google's 7-inch Nexus 7 tablet

The late Steve Jobs famously thought that the smaller tablet form factor was no good, which explains Apple’s long delay in getting a 7-inch iPad to market, but apparently the company has come around. Perhaps Google’s new 7-inch Nexus 7 tablet finally pushed the envelope far enough for them to pull the trigger.