Originally Posted by Carmissimo
And that select group would leap at the chance to let the rest of the world know they had been invited to such an exclusive event. In other words, what does it matter. Big event, exclusive event. Either way, us regular folk would know about it the instant invitations were issued. There is no reason to conclude that this is a done deal. Rather the opposite holds. For all the chatter, where's the logic in this claimed addition to Apple's product line. Despite many claiming otherwise, this tweener tablet would be the least loved of Apple's Touch devices.
It lacks the portability of the iPhone/iPod Touch and the screen real estate of the regular iPad. It's not something that would be attractive in terms of price, either, consideirng bang for the buck. It's claimed this device would be great for a school setting but the tweener form factor is not ideal for such a setting where a larger screen offers the flexibility to accomplish more different tasks with a wider group of kids of varying ages and needs. Children donor have a problem handling the current iPad. They take to the device instantly. No complaints from them. No, to serve the education market, Apple would gain more traction by dropping the price of the iPad 2by a few dollars more and now and again refreshing the internal components, while retaining the perfectly adequate, lower resolution screen. For commuters, the iPhone/Touch with the larger screen works extremely well. The bigger screen does make a difference. Picked up my new iPhone the other day and I find the new taller screen is more enjoyable to use than the previous 3.5-inch screen.
Basically there is likely a weak market for such a tweener tablet among those who have one of the smartphones with larger displays, including the millions like me who already own the iPhone 5. If you already have a portable device like the iPhone, especially the larger new edition, how likely is it that you'd also bring along the Tweener tablet. And how many smartphone owners leave home without their smartphone.
Around and about when you're not on the road wiith your smartphone, doesn't an iPad with the larger screen make more sense? The biggest complaint is weight but that will soon be addressed. If Apple devoted a lot of engineering effort into making an already light iPhone even lighter, guaranteed the next iPad is going to be significantly lighter than the current model. If anything, a slightly larger tablet would seem more viable than the rumoured tweener, once the technology allows for a lighter device.
Then again, maybe the invitations go out this week after all. Or maybe Apple really pulls a fast one by holding the event to unveil not the iPad Mini by the long awaited TV.
I don't think you understand that well how Apple does business. Your arguments are weak, WADR, but I'll hold you to them, nonetheless.
You're saying that price point sensitivity is not viable and sensible as a marketing and sales advantage over the full-sized iPad? We're still in an economic slump and last time I checked $199/$249/$299/$349 < $399.
Mark my words, when the smaller iPad launches, it will be a huge hit, sell more than the iPad 2, and the iPad 2 will disappear shortly thereafter. Continuing to sell the iPad 2 was about squeezing value out of legacy production lines and older components and using it as a placeholder device, price-wise, until the 8" is ready. That is a core aspect of Apple's business and operational strategy and is key to their enormous margins; it is a key way for them to maximize profits, all while closing price umbrellas. At $349 or less, the 8" iPad will fill the price/feature space even better than the iPad 2. Personally, I simply do not need a $500 device that does all that, nor do I want to buy a device with components that are 1-2 old. I buy the latest available hardware at the time I am ready to buy. When the 6th gen 2013 iPod touch arrives, the 4th gen touch will disappear.
Given reduced keyboard and screen real estate, the "Mini" will be marketed more as a consumption device rather than a general purpose tablet.
There also are portability advantages. I ride the subway everyday in NYC and I drive. I'm not small nor am I a weakling by any means, but the iPad is just bigger and has more features than I need. I do not read eBooks on by iPhone; maybe longform articles, but not books. I'm not gonna whip out a laptop on the train for any reason. And I do not need a full-sized iPad to read a magazine or book or edit some pictures or email on the go. On the subway, people appear vulnerable with such an expensive device; thefts on the train are legendary. Also the large size appears awkward on a packed train, especially when you are unlikely to have a seat during the morning and evening rushes (when people will want to use them). If it's lost or stolen, the replacement cost is less. (A secretary at my office had her iPad stolen from her handbag. It's gone for good. She decided to wait on a "Mini" because it's cheaper, more easily replaceable, and better overall for her daily commute and remain connected without using her office desktop.) I think she's a typical price-conscious urban buyer. Use cases in the 'burbs would be a bit different, I imagine, but not dramatically so. In a car, kids and adults will have a more manageable device. Don't underestimate how large and heavy a full-size iPad can be for a kid, or the elderly, or someone with a disability. By design, accessibility options are not-very-much-talked-about killer features of Apple's products.
I've said this before elsewhere on AI and have been deafened by the sound of crickets: how does anyone explain the existence of iPods in pretty much every imaginable storage capacity, size, pixel count, connectivity option(s), and so on? There's clear precedence for this in Apple's product offerings. How do you explain the 11" MBA, which I believe currently outsells the 13" MBA? The former is significantly lighter, noticeably smaller and $200 cheaper at base. These things do matter. The 11" Air was too small for me, so I got the 13". The New iPad is too large for me (and my wife already has one), so I'll get the 8" model. I think we'll be switching up in our use; if one day I need a larger iPad and she's ok with the smaller one, it'll be a plus-plus. I'm trying to put my wife's Dell out to pasture and wil get her an 11" Air; she'll have that a full-sized iPad. See the pattern? Mobility means very different things to very different people and very different things to the same people in very different scenarios of use. Appreciating that, especially when design, manufacturing, etc. overlap in a relatively small product lineup. Apple's profitable ecosystem effect is not simply about hardware/software integration, but also about hardware/hardware integration. Satisfaction is not simply about build quality, but also about whether the buyer perceives that a product fill his or her specific needs at a reasonable price.
Finally, news organizations on par with the WSJ and Reuters, and bloggers like Dalrymple, to my knowledge, have not recently been wrong about these product announcements. By all accounts, they are directly in communication with senior Apple management. Can we be shocked by an entirely new or otherwise different product? Absolutely. A smaller iPad will arrive, the question is of exactly what it will look like, which components and features it will have, and how it will be marketed and priced.
Edited by Carthusia - 10/14/12 at 9:42am