The Wall Street Journal Says Apple Already Manufacturing iPad mini

The latest iPad mini mockup, courtesy of 9to5Mac.

This week is quickly turning into iPad mini rumor week. First we heard from a financial investor who claimed to have confirmation that Apple will be mailing out invitations to an event on Oct. 10. Then, we were told that production had already begun on the iPad mini in Brazil.

We also saw new images of the purported smaller sized tablet that showed a nano-SIM tray and an anodized aluminum back. Today, the Wall Street Journal is reporting that, “Asian suppliers for Apple Inc. have started mass production of a new tablet computer smaller than the current iPad.”

The, still unofficial, iPad mini is rumored to be 7.85 inches with a display screen that won’t be as detailed as the third-generation Apple tablet, but still Retina quality for its size. It supposedly will come in at a price point of around $250 and may or may not be 4G LTE compatible, depending on which rumor you are reading this week.

Analysts have been talking about the effects of an iPad mini on the market for months now. Christine Wang of Daiwa Capital Markets told the Wall Street Journal that the smaller tablet would appeal to consumers who find the iPad to be too pricey and cumbersome. “Many people use the iPad to play games and watch videos, but they cannot hold it with one hand,” said Wang.

Apple is predicted to sell as many as 10 million iPad minis in the fourth quarter of 2012. Four to six million units are estimated to sell during the holiday season alone. That is, if the smaller tablet is even real, and if Apple really launches the product this year, which it looks like is a real possibility.

[via The Verge]

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About Lory: Writer of all things app related, traveler of the space-time continuum, baker of really great cookies. Follow me @appaholik