It's a ridiculous article. It assumes:
1. Apple would compete on price rather than features.
2. Apple would need to cut corners to offer a product that is competitive on price. Keep in mind that with Apple's incredible supply chain, competitors can't beat the price of the 10" iPad or MBAs (or even the 27" iMac) even while Apple is getting very attractive margins.
3. Consumers would not pay a premium for a genuine iPad rather than a cut rate POS that doesn't work well.
He didn't provide a shred of evidence to support any of those assumptions.
Originally Posted by SolipsismX
Me too. I can see another line but it can't be something that weakens the iPad brand. The Kindle Fire might be nice for the price but you get what you pay for an it's the same price as the low-end iPod Touch with only 8GB that was released in 2010. Even the iPod Touch goes up to $400, double the cost of these cheap tablets.
Why in the world do people assume that an 8" iPad would weaken the brand? Does the 11" MBA weaken the brand? Does the 21" iMac weaken the brand? It's entirely possible to offer different sizes without weakening the brand.
Conceptually, start with the iPad 2 at $399. The hypothetical 7" iPad would have half the area. That means roughly half the screen costs (if using the same generation screen), half the metal costs, half the machining costs, slight reduction in battery costs, etc. Hitting a $299 price point doesn't sound all that difficult without cutting ANY corners.
As far as brand is concerned, the iPad brand is far, far stronger than the iPod brand. If they release the exact same product as an iPod, it will get far less attention than if it's released as an iPad. It's not logical, but that's the way it would work.
Originally Posted by thejd
Has anyone ever used one of these 7" devices? I have and so has one of my Apple hating coworkers. For two weeks I used one as a phone/tablet while traveling abroad (a Samsung Note) and came to the conclusion that it was nothing more than clunky to carry and use. My wife, who does not usually comment on gadgets and such, agreed. As for my coworker, he carried around his Nook Color for maybe two months for his everyday work needs. Now I never see it anymore and a 4.5" Droid has taken its place.
My point is that Apple doesn't need to introduce a device this size because people don't use devices this size like iPads. They use iPads like iPads and iPhones like iPhones. I think this "mini" iPad is actually the new, larger iPhone or the remote for the new AppleTv.
So since YOU don't use a 7" device the way others do, it doesn't make sense?
Lots of people use 7" tablets in ways very similar to the iPad. And quite a few people have expressed an interest.
If no one would ever want a 7" tablet, please explain why 7" Android tablets outsell 10" Android tablets by a wide margin.