Next Wednesday, Sept. 12, Apple will reveal the latest… something. We don’t know what, but speculation leads us to believe the newest generation iPhone will be announced, as well as the much-anticipated iPad mini.
Anticipated in the tech media world, but according to a recent survey by PriceGrabber.com, not so much. It appears that the new iPhone will be on consumer shopping lists this fall.
The survey, conducted August 21-30 included 17,40 online shopping consumers. When asked which rumored Apple product they would prefer to debut this September, 34 percent of respondents selected the iPhone 5 while 28 percent selected the iPad mini. That being said, most consumers want to see Apple announce both devices at the Sept. 12 event.
It appears that consumers plan to buy cautiously when it comes to the iPad mini. If the device turns out to be real, only 15 percent said they would buy within the first week. Nearly half of those surveyed said they planned to buy one before the end of 2012. It looks like consumers are thinking of the device as a good Christmas present. In fact, of the respondents surveyed, 30 percent said they would purchase an iPad mini because it makes a great gift.
A year ago, no one would have believed that Apple planned on releasing a smaller iPad. A week away from the potential release, it is still hard to believe. It makes sense for Apple to throw its mini hat into the ring now, since the Amazon Kindle Fire made such a dent in the tablet market in 2012. Granted, it didn’t even come close to catching up with the iPad, but the 7-inch tablet made waves.
The Kindle Fire’s popularity, as well as Google’s low-cost Nexus 7, may be why Apple had a change of heart, but it might also be Apple’s biggest mistake in a decade. Will consumers be willing to spend the money on an iPad mini? Sure, it will probably be a better-quality tablet with more features than the Kindle Fire or the Nexus 7, but the public has already gotten used to a $200 price tag. The chances that the iPad mini will come in under $300 are pretty slim. Even if Apple could strip the cost down to $250, it might not be enough to get people to switch.
The PriceGrabber.com survey suggested that the most popular feature of the iPad mini is smaller size and portability. You really could fit one in your purse. Sixty-one respondents chose size as the best feature, while 42 percent were interested in the lower cost. This may indicate that money is not a factor in the potential market share for the smaller iPad. If that is the case, then Apple will be making the smartest decision in a decade by releasing the iPad mini.
Hopefully, we will be able to speculate about sales of the iPad mini starting next week, instead of just speculating on the possible existence of it.