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Bringing Retina display to iPad mini could add 30% to total parts cost

post #1 of 38
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With Apple rumored to be working on a next-generation iPad mini with Retina display, some market watchers estimate that adding the high-resolution panel to the 7.9-inch tablet could raise total parts costs by up to 30 percent.

iPad mini Teardown
Source: IHS iSuppli


According to commentary from DigiTimes, Apple's inclusion of a Retina display suitable for the iPad mini would raise the product's overall bill of materials by more than $12, bringing the overall tally to above $200 per unit. While the publication has been hit-or-miss with Apple hardware rumors in the past, its track record with display-centric reports has been fairly accurate.

If Apple adopts the Retina display, not only will the cost of the panel increase, but other parts as well, including an upgraded LED backlight to compensate for the increased pixel density. All told, the Retina display is estimated to raise the iPad mini's BOM by more than 30 percent.

Research firm IHS iSuppli in November conducted a teardown of the then-new iPad mini and estimated the 7.9-inch tablet's innards to cost Apple $188. Without factoring in labor costs, the low-end 16GB Wi-Fi only model is yielding 43 percent profit margins on the high end, with the 32GB and 64GB versions bringing in margins of up to 52 percent and 56 percent, respectively.

Of the components, the iPad mini's screen was the most expensive item at $80, representing about 43 percent of the total BOM. Costs for the panel are likely to have decreased due to increased production ramp.

It is unclear if Apple will raise the price of the iPad mini if and when the company decides to release a Retina display model, though when an identical spec bump came to the 9.7-inch iPad, consumer cost remain unchanged.

The publication goes on to say that the global market is looking to move 180-240 million 7-inch form factor tablets in 2013, accounting for 45-60 percent of total shipments.
post #2 of 38

Assumed, mythical number to increase (maybe) should assumed (presently mythical) parts exist.

post #3 of 38
Which is precisely why it won't happen in 2013.

The iPad mini is supposed to be an upsell from budget android tablets.

Adding a retina display to the mini at this point will remove the distinguishing feature that makes people pay more for a full-sized iPad.

I predict they will keep the mini more or less as is and use manifacturing ramp to drop the price while maintaining margin. The US$329 starting price is just too weird to not have been purposely within striking distance of US$299. An iPad for $300 is huge news.

Based on the backplate leak We already know Apple are working hard to make the iPad 5 more like the mini - specifically addressing the most common complaints about the full size iPad: heavy, thick and cumbersome.

Apple owns the centre of the market. It's fairly clear that their focus has to be on stopping encroachment by competitors at the bottom and top ends of the market. They can only do this by spreading out, not contracting, their price points.


7" Droids <--cheaper iPad mini <-- more compact iPad | iPad 128GB--> Microsoft Surface/Ultrabooks
Edited by Dunks - 2/18/13 at 5:07pm
post #4 of 38
I still think 2014 is most likely for that thickness and weight with the current iPad mini being the maximum allowed but I sure it hope it arrives this year.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Tallest Skil View Post

Assumed, mythical number to increase (maybe) should assumed (presently mythical) parts exist.

...and that previous mythical numbers are accurate.

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post #5 of 38
Quote:
Originally Posted by Dunks View Post

Which is precisely why it won't happen in 2013

 

It can still happen by charging $399 instead of $329 for the retina iPad mini. The current iPad mini will become $299, while the normal iPad 5 will be starting $499. 

 

I don't think AAPL can afford to sit there doing nothing major when others are producing 5" 1080p smartphones .... 

post #6 of 38
Quote:
Originally Posted by GadgetCanada View Post

30% extra cost for 100% more pixels. I'll buy.

100% higher resolution = 300% more pixels.

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post #7 of 38

I bet that most of the people who were whining about the iPad Mini not being retina are probably going to complain about the price, if Apple releases a retina iPad Mini which costs slightly more, and these very same people will just invent some new excuse to not get a Mini when the iPad Mini retina gets released, if it ever does get released.

 

As for me, I just bought a non-retina iPad Mini last week, and I do not want retina on my iPad Mini. Why in the world wouldn't I want retina?

 

Well, there are a few reasons.

 

One, I already have a retina iPad 3, so that takes care of my retina needs when I need it.

 

Two, one of the things that I like about the iPad Mini is that it's so damn light. I like both my iPad 3 and iPad Mini, but picking up and using an iPad 3 after using the iPad Mini for a while, feels like you're picking up a huge brick. The weight difference is considerable, and I don't want a heavier iPad Mini.

 

Three, I don't want a slightly thicker iPad Mini either.

 

Four, I don't want any less battery life than what I get on the iPad Mini now. The iPad 3 did have slightly less battery life than the iPad 2, especially the newer version of the iPad 2, with the new CPU chip.

post #8 of 38

You may not want th extra heat coming from the mini too.  I have both iPad form factor.  I prefer the iPad because of a larger screen for home use.  I like the mini just the way it is.  Its size is just perfect for people to carry around.  If Apple adds the cell phone capability, that if add with a bluetooth headset can run over the Galaxy Note. 

 

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Apple ][ View Post

I bet that most of the people who were whining about the iPad Mini not being retina are probably going to complain about the price, if Apple releases a retina iPad Mini which costs slightly more, and these very same people will just invent some new excuse to not get a Mini when the iPad Mini retina gets released, if it ever does get released.

 

As for me, I just bought a non-retina iPad Mini last week, and I do not want retina on my iPad Mini. Why in the world wouldn't I want retina?

 

Well, there are a few reasons.

 

One, I already have a retina iPad 3, so that takes care of my retina needs when I need it.

 

Two, one of the things that I like about the iPad Mini is that it's so damn light. I like both my iPad 3 and iPad Mini, but picking up and using an iPad 3 after using the iPad Mini for a while, feels like you're picking up a huge brick. The weight difference is considerable, and I don't want a heavier iPad Mini.

 

Three, I don't want a slightly thicker iPad Mini either.

 

Four, I don't want any less battery life than what I get on the iPad Mini now. The iPad 3 did have slightly less battery life than the iPad 2, especially the newer version of the iPad 2, with the new CPU chip.

post #9 of 38

Hmm...I think it would be a bad idea to increase the price on a retina mini.  When the 3rd gen iPad was released they didn't raise the price over iPad 2, they just continued selling the iPad 2 at a lower price.  I don't think Apple should release a retina mini unless/until they can keep it thin and light with amazing battery life and keep the price at $329.  I don't get why a retina display would have to increase the price anyway.  There are competitor tablets that are cheaper than the mini that have better displays.

post #10 of 38
Quote:
Originally Posted by drobforever View Post

 

It can still happen by charging $399 instead of $329 for the retina iPad mini. The current iPad mini will become $299, while the normal iPad 5 will be starting $499. 

 

I don't think AAPL can afford to sit there doing nothing major when others are producing 5" 1080p smartphones .... 

I agree completely.  Your pricing speculation makes perfect sense.

post #11 of 38
Quote:
Originally Posted by drobforever View Post

 

It can still happen by charging $399 instead of $329 for the retina iPad mini. The current iPad mini will become $299, while the normal iPad 5 will be starting $499. 

 

I don't think AAPL can afford to sit there doing nothing major when others are producing 5" 1080p smartphones .... 

 

Actually if they keep a non-retina mini around it could work:

 

7" Droids <-- cheaper iPad mini |  iPad mini w/ retina --> <-- more compact iPad | iPad 128GB --> Microsoft Surface/Ultrabooks


Edited by Dunks - 2/18/13 at 5:23pm
post #12 of 38
Quote:
Originally Posted by rsdofny View Post

You may not want th extra heat coming from the mini too.  I have both iPad form factor.  I prefer the iPad because of a larger screen for home use.  I like the mini just the way it is.  Its size is just perfect for people to carry around.  If Apple adds the cell phone capability, that if add with a bluetooth headset can run over the Galaxy Note. 

 

 

True, a retina device will generate more heat than a non retina device. Before I had an iPad 3, I had an iPad 2, and the iPad 3 definitely gets warmer when under load. 

 

I think that a retina display is great and it definitely has advantages, but that great screen also comes with a few compromises, compared to the non-retina versions. I guess that it all depends on what somebody is looking for and for what purpose and where they intend to use their tablet.

post #13 of 38
Quote:
Originally Posted by Rogifan View Post

There are competitor tablets that are cheaper than the mini that have better displays.

 

Are those the same competitors that sell their tablets at cost or even at a loss?

 

From an investor's point of view, I don't want Apple releasing a retina iPad Mini for the same price, because we all know what's going to happen. Apple is going to get slammed by all of the talking heads and other clueless people on Wall Street, since their margins will be decreasing yet again.

post #14 of 38
Just today I was in a local Apple store talking with an employee about this...first time I have held an iPad mini and iPad 3 side by side to compare pixels...I have to say, if no new iPad mini with retina is available by April, I can see me living with the current mini. It looks pretty damn good even not being retina.
post #15 of 38
I would bet Apple to offer both, regular and retina iPad mini
post #16 of 38
Quote:
Originally Posted by Rogifan View Post

There are competitor tablets that are cheaper than the mini that have better displays.

 

Apple wins here on the quality of the ecosystem. The App Store offers a critical nexus of ease of use, peace of mind, and broad selection that competitors aren't keeping pace with.

post #17 of 38

Baloney

 

Has anyone stopped to consider that iPad Minis high price might be the result of Apple looking ahead and trying to set a price to cover retina when it comes out?    In otherwords Apple has already set a price to cover retina without a price change when it is actually released.    

Quote:
Originally Posted by Dunks View Post

Which is precisely why it won't happen in 2013.

The iPad mini is supposed to be an upsell from budget android tablets.

Adding a retina display to the mini at this point will remove the distinguishing feature that makes people pay more for a full-sized iPad.

I predict they will keep the mini more or less as is and use manifacturing ramp to drop the price while maintaining margin. The US$329 starting price is just too weird to not have been purposely within striking distance of US$299. An iPad for $300 is huge news.

Based on the backplate leak We already know Apple are working hard to make the iPad 5 more like the mini - specifically addressing the most common complaints about the full size iPad: heavy, thick and cumbersome.

Apple owns the centre of the market. It's fairly clear that their focus has to be on stopping encroachment by competitors at the bottom and top ends of the market. They can only do this by spreading out, not contracting, their price points.


7" Droids <--cheaper iPad mini <-- more compact iPad | iPad 128GB--> Microsoft Surface/Ultrabooks
post #18 of 38
Quote:
Originally Posted by allenbf View Post

It looks pretty damn good even not being retina.

It does indeed. And I'm used to retina, but I don't mind using an iPad Mini at all, since it has other advantages. I haven't done much reading on the Mini yet, but I've used it for a few games and some Netflix and it looks pretty good to me. 

 

Just to prove my point, both of my iPads were not being used a few minutes ago, and my girlfriend went to get one to use, and guess which one she picked up? Hint: It wasn't the retina iPad 3.lol.gif

post #19 of 38
Quote:
Originally Posted by Dunks View Post

 

Apple wins here on the quality of the ecosystem. The App Store offers a critical nexus of ease of use, peace of mind, and broad selection that competitors aren't keeping pace with.

Also, it depends what he means by "better displays". A 16:9 display for a tablet is a non-starter as far as I'm concerned. They're horrible. I don't care if they were 4k displays, 16:9 is not good for a tablet, and is really awkward to use in portrait. iPads are meant to be used however you want to, either landscape or portrait.

post #20 of 38
Quote:
Originally Posted by Apple ][ View Post

Also, it depends what he means by "better displays". A 16:9 display for a tablet is a non-starter as far as I'm concerned. They're horrible. I don't care if they were 4k displays, 16:9 is not good for a tablet, and is really awkward to use in portrait. iPads are meant to be used however you want to, either landscape or portrait.

 

I agree. I much prefer the proportions of a 4:3 screen.

post #21 of 38

So this report is assuming that Apple will put in a battery-draining Retina screen and keep the same size battery? That makes no sense.

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post #22 of 38
"Digitimes"

Nuff said.
post #23 of 38
Quote:
Originally Posted by wizard69 View Post

Has anyone stopped to consider that iPad Minis high price might be the result of Apple looking ahead and trying to set a price to cover retina when it comes out?    In otherwords Apple has already set a price to cover retina without a price change when it is actually released.    

I think that's extremely likely but it could be they planned on the Retina for 2013 and figured out that price would be $70 more than the current iPad mini thus making it debut at $399 instead of the odd $329.

As you know, it's not just about the Retina display but the GPU, memory bandwidth, etc., as well as also making sure the weight, thickness and battery still within the Retina mini's usable parameters which I believe is a much smaller window for such a small device.

Plus, if the price difference was less than $70 the difference might not be enough to warrant even having an undated non-Retina Mini and the old Mini can reach much closer to $200 if they keep it on.

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post #24 of 38
If Google can release retina level panels in their 199 Nexus 7 tablets, and Amazon can so the same in their 249 Fire HD tablets, I'm not understanding why Apple can't do likewise in their 329 iPad mini. Sorry but the math isn't adding up.
post #25 of 38
Quote:
Originally Posted by Cash907 View Post

If Google can release retina level panels in their 199 Nexus 7 tablets, and Amazon can so the same in their 249 Fire HD tablets, I'm not understanding why Apple can't do likewise in their 329 iPad mini. Sorry but the math isn't adding up.

The math adds up when one listens to the quarterly earnings report. Apple reports a profit.......and a nice, FAT one, at that.

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post #26 of 38
Quote:
Originally Posted by Dickprinter View Post

The math adds up when one listens to the quarterly earnings report. Apple reports a profit.......and a nice, FAT one, at that.

Or when you consider the performance of the device and how many more pixels the 7.9" 4:3 display has over a 7" 16:9 display with the same PPI. The problem is that Cash907 didn't actually do any math to reach his conclusion and when there is math presented he discounts it because he can't understand it.

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post #27 of 38

Now we see why they made the iPad mini $329... Here's why...

 

1) Drop the price of the entry level iPad mini to $299

2) Introduce the iPad mini with Retina at $399

3) Redesign the iPad to be thinner and lighter at $499

 

Apple could also continue to drop the price of the entry model to attack low-end tablets, while maintaining an easy upgrade price.

post #28 of 38
Can AppleInsider writers do basic arithmetic?

$12/$188 = 0.064, i.e. $18 is a 6.4% increase in the BOM not 30%.

As the piece also asserts, increased production volume is likely to have reduced the BOM anyway. Ergo: don't expect any price increases for iPad Mini 2.
post #29 of 38
Igzo will take care of that.
Isn't the igzo display thin, retina+, and power efficient?
That means apple might not have to add bigger batteries.The resolution will be even higher, and the screen might actually be thinner.

Also, the basic manufacturing cost is the same as the LCD. It will be up to Sharp when they will be ready to ship such display.
post #30 of 38
Here's what I think.
iPad mini $299
iPad mini with retina $329
iPad 5 same price as the current iPad 4 and the iPad 4 will decrease.

I'm also guessing that they will be discontinuing the old iPad(haven't they?) and iPad 2.They are pushing the lightning connector as fast as they can.

iPad 3 is out so.......

iPhone 4S with the same 3.5 screen but lighter and have lightning???
post #31 of 38
Quote:
Originally Posted by iforgot View Post

Igzo will take care of that.
Isn't the igzo display thin, retina+, and power efficient?
That means apple might not have to add bigger batteries.The resolution will be even higher, and the screen might actually be thinner.

Also, the basic manufacturing cost is the same as the LCD. It will be up to Sharp when they will be ready to ship such display.

The display is only one aspect of increased power use for a Retina display.
Edited by SolipsismX - 2/18/13 at 10:21pm

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post #32 of 38

So what? Apple obviously is going to eat the cost, no way it's going to increase the price of the mini. As for keeping the current resolution model.. I really doubt it. Would be way too may SKUs, and right now the iPad mini is the 'ugly ducking' in screen quality of ALL their devices. I'm sure Apple is looking forward to upgrading the screen, so they can be fine optimizing everything for retina. I can't see how it would be acceptable to continue selling such a low dpi device in the future. 

post #33 of 38

Bring it on... I don't care if it's 500€, I will buy...

 

Nota: I hate it, Retina or not, but my lovely lady wants one. Her wishes are my command ;)


Edited by lightknight - 2/19/13 at 1:07am

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post #34 of 38

iPad mini is fine the way it is now, we have been obsessed with screen resolution on tablets for a while now...you'll reach a point where the function, battery life and ease of use is more important than a few more pixels. If Apple is going to up the price on mini it better have something more than just retina, just saying. Otherwise, they will shoot themselves in the foot.

post #35 of 38
who thinks that the ipad mini price of 330 is odd?... meaning they priced it at that level because they knew that there would be a retina ipad mini in the future so they(apple) priced it at the retina ipad mini level.
or should the ipad mini have been priced at 250?... because 330 minus 30% is (330 / 1.30) is 253.48...

TL;DR... they will release an Ipad mini with a retina display and it will be 330...
post #36 of 38
Originally Posted by Cash907 View Post

If Google can release retina level panels in their 199 Nexus 7 tablets, and Amazon can so the same in their 249 Fire HD tablets, I'm not understanding why Apple can't do likewise in their 329 iPad mini. Sorry but the math isn't adding up.

 

Seriously, how is it you're posting here on AI, but apparently don't read tech news?

 

Google and Amazon are perfectly willing to sell at breakeven, or even at a loss.  With Google, you are buying their product so they can sell you (in essence, don't get pedantic).  Every unit they sell is increasing their inventory (their user base), so their profit maximization point is right around or just below breakeven. Amazon is similar, but they're selling a device that gives their customers easier access to their products.  Their profit doesn't come from the device, but from the increase product sales they make through Amazon.com, so it makes perfect sense that they too are willing to sell at a slight loss.

 

Amazon also gains value from the fact that they are monitoring Every Single Page you visit across the web when using their device.  That's incredibly valuable data, and another reason why I would never use a Kindle-based device.

 

This doesn't even consider the difference in build-quality, but the above is enough to understand the price differences.

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post #37 of 38

Retina is my buy trigger.

post #38 of 38
Quote:
Originally Posted by Dunks View Post

Which is precisely why it won't happen in 2013.

The iPad mini is supposed to be an upsell from budget android tablets.

Adding a retina display to the mini at this point will remove the distinguishing feature that makes people pay more for a full-sized iPad.

 

 

As someone who uses a tablet primarily as a reader, I totally disagree.  The full-sized iPad is a bit large to curl up with in bed, while the mini is the perfect size to hold for hours of reading.  Some people will undoubtedly buy a Retina Mini because they don't want to spend extra money on a full-sized iPad, but many others will buy a Retina Mini because it's simply the right size for their needs.  

 

Some of the comments here make me wonder if the commenters have actually compared the display on a Mini to that of Retina iPad in person, because there is simply no comparison.  The Retina display looks like the future, while the Mini's display looks like 2001.  

 

My 1st gen Nook Color has a slightly higher PPI than the iPad Mini, so there's little incentive to upgrade.  Slap a Retina display on the Mini, and I'm there, even at a higher price.    A Retina display will set the mini apart from similarly sized tablets, and it will be hard for other makers to copy it well given Apple's expertise in packaging thin displays and components together.  In fact the Mini is a very odd product for Apple.  What other iDevices lack Retina displays?  The iPod Classic.  Not very impressive company for the Mini. 

 

I'd like to see:

 

iPad Mini, $329

iPad Retina Mini, $399

 

Both with a base of 32GB memory since Apple's NAND costs only keep falling.

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