The biggest question surrounding Apple’s much-anticipated iPad Mini is its price.
Will Apple be able to price its smaller tablet at $250? $299? The answer is unlikely. A new iPod Touch starts at $299 for a 32 GB model and a 16 GB iPad 2 starts at $399. Apple is going to come somewhere in the middle — and the $330 price seems appropriate.
There were rumors that Apple would release an 8GB version, but that too doesn’t seem plausible. You can’t buy an iPod Nano today that’s under 16 GB. Space would fill up awful quickly on an 8 GB iPad Mini.
9to5 Mac pressed on the price issues this morning.
“Apple’s entry price for its upcoming smaller iPad is between the base model of the new, fifth-generation iPod Touch ($299) and the currently shipping WiFi-only 16GB iPad 2 ($399),” according to the report. “According to our sources, the base model of the smaller iPad will likely be priced at a minimum of $329 in the United States.”
Is that too high? My guess is no. It’s certainly not starting at $500, which probably scares a lot of consumers, but it’s expensive enough to show that there is a certain level of quality behind it.
Apple isn’t going to pull an Amazon and price it so cheap that they don’t make any profit off their tablet, and just rely on revenue from content purchased on it. It’s not their style.
The iPad Mini will feature a thinner body and a 7.85-inch screen — down about two inches from the current-generation iPad. Based on this price, it should include a Retina display and will give consumers the option of buying a tablet that can access the 4G LTE network.
The smaller tablet should appeal to first-time tablet buyers, students and children and commuters.
The iPad Mini should be a great tablet for consuming lots of media — especially iBooks — which Apple will touch on at a special media event that will unveil the new gadget, scheduled for Tuesday, Oct. 23. Preorders would likely begin that Thursday or Friday.