September launch of 'iPad mini' seen boosting education sales

Posted:
in iPad edited January 2014
If Apple releases a smaller, less expensive iPad this September, a new analysis suggests it could be a big success with schools under budget constraints, and students looking for a lighter, more portable iPad.

Analyst Brian White said in a note to investors on Tuesday that he has continued to hear on his trip to Taiwan that Apple plans to launch a so-called "iPad mini" this September. White began to sound the drum for a September release on Monday, when he revealed that supply chain sources indicated Apple is gearing up for what could prove to be an "exciting" month.

White said on Tuesday that he thinks a smaller iPad would expand Apple's addressable market opportunity. By offering a new iPad at a lower price point, it would attract more price sensitive customers, and also offer an alternative for those who want a smaller tablet.

In particular, White believes that schools under budget constraints who cannot afford the current entry-level $399 iPad 2 might show interest in a smaller iPad. He also believes that some students might prefer to carry around a smaller and lighter iPad for classes.

Continued whispers of a new, smaller iPad from Taiwan come as a new survey, released earlier on Tuesday, found "highly encouraging" interest in a prospective "iPad mini" from Apple. Data from ChangeWave Research showed that 14 percent of North American consumers looking to buy a tablet would be "somewhat likely" to purchase a smaller iPad, while 3 percent indicated they are "very likely."

iPad


In fact, the numbers suggested to Dr. Paul Carton, ChangeWave's vice president of research, that a so-called "iPad mini" from Apple would be the greatest challenger to Apple's own market dominating full-sized iPad.

"At the moment, the greatest competitive threat to the new iPad could well be the iPad Mini — which doesn't exist yet, but even if it does, it too will be made by Apple," Carton said.

Rumors of a smaller iPad have persisted for years, even though late Apple Chief Executive Steve Jobs famously panned smaller tablets, saying 7-inch devices were too small for users. Jobs said in October of 2010 that manufacturers of 7-inch tablets would need to ship sandpaper with the hardware, so users could file down their fingers to the point where they could hit smaller targets on the screen.

But in recent months, rumors became more specific, and suggested Apple has been experimenting with a prototype iPad with a screen size of 7.85 inches and a resolution of 1,024 by 768 pixels — the same resolution as the first-generation iPad and the iPad 2.
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Comments

  • Reply 1 of 101
    mstonemstone Posts: 11,510member


    Lighter is probably better for kids. As I experience when on a trip, I am carrying the MBP and the iPad so it is more weight than I used to carry before the iPad came out. I still need the MBP for many tasks that the iPad can't do however I want to have the iPad handy for quick access and entertainment. I think it will be similar with school kids. Since the iPad won't be a total textbook replacement, at least in the beginning, they will be toting their books plus the iPad.

  • Reply 2 of 101
    monstrositymonstrosity Posts: 2,206member


    Has anybody considered that this 'mini iPad' might have an E-Ink style display to compete with the kindle? 

  • Reply 3 of 101
    jragostajragosta Posts: 10,473member
    Has anybody considered that this 'mini iPad' might have an E-Ink style display to compete with the kindle? 

    It has been suggested, but it's not likely. E-ink is too limited for multimedia devices - even the Kindle Fire dropped e-ink in favor of LCD.
  • Reply 4 of 101
    Note previous Appleinsider post on "Collapse of Kindle..". All probably due to it not being an iPad. New form factor may be a iTouch replacement but it would not be a mini iPad. Why add a smaller competitor line that could conceivably take away from the premier product of the Apple line up?. Silly to suggest it.
  • Reply 5 of 101
    solipsismxsolipsismx Posts: 19,566member
    Has anybody considered that this 'mini iPad' might have an E-Ink style display to compete with the kindle? 

    I don't see it. I also don't see any colour eInk on the horizon. I can, however, make a case for Apple dropping the iPhone 3GS in major markets as they will keep only the last 3 years of iPhones and then continuing to use the same display production to make these larger panels. It is rumoured to be the same 163 PPI of the of the first 3 iPhones so that should mean the cost is very low for Apple.

    Note previous Appleinsider post on "Collapse of Kindle..". All probably due to it not being an iPad. New form factor may be a iTouch replacement but it would not be a mini iPad. Why add a smaller competitor line that could conceivably take away from the premier product of the Apple line up?. Silly to suggest it.
    I have trouble seeing the benefit of Apple weakening their iPad brand with a smaller, non-Retina, non-IPS panel that is using other components from several years prior and likely having some reduced components like the Kindle Fire to keep costs down.
  • Reply 6 of 101
    williamhwilliamh Posts: 667member


    I think the iPad screen size is right for education.  They could come out with a cheaper education model that's based on iPad2: the same screen size, but with tough plastics instead of aluminum and perhaps a cheaper screen like the iPad1 LCD.  No need to go to smaller size to get the price point down.

  • Reply 7 of 101
    MacProMacPro Posts: 18,352member
    I personally doubt this. More likely an even cheaper iPad 2 for education. The form factor, as is, is perfect for Apple's iBooks in education. Being any smaller would make it a pain to use. Having used a Kindle Fire I can see why they are declining.
  • Reply 8 of 101
    rabbit_coachrabbit_coach Posts: 1,114member

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by williamh View Post


    I think the iPad screen size is right for education.  They could come out with a cheaper education model that's based on iPad2: the same screen size, but with tough plastics instead of aluminum and perhaps a cheaper screen like the iPad1 LCD.  No need to go to smaller size to get the price point down.



    Ditto!


     


    I don't believe any of this miniPad rumors. If at all it's probably just the remote control that is to be included with the upcoming AppleTV.

  • Reply 9 of 101
    gazoobeegazoobee Posts: 3,754member

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post



    If Apple releases a smaller, less expensive iPad this September, a new analysis suggests it could be a big success with schools under budget constraints, and students looking for a lighter, more portable iPad.

    ...


     



    Separate from the issue of whether Apple will in fact make a smaller iPad, all his reasons here are crap IMO.  


     


    If a school can't afford a $399.00 iPad, they are a school that has never had technology in the class before, because a $399.00 iPad is yards and miles cheaper of what schools that *do* use technology in the classrooms have had previously, i.e. - laptops.  


     


    In Educational institutions all over North America, some classrooms use sets of laptops as a teaching tool and typically have carts that contain and maintain them.  Replacing these carts and laptops with iPad sets is a cost saving, not an expense.  Any school that sees this as "expensive" is a school that didn't do the laptop thing before and is therefore an untapped market.  No one can know if this untapped market will in fact jump in if a lower cost product is available.  This is pure speculation on his part. 


     


    Also, this year, for the very first time, the infrastructure necessary to support iOS devices in the classroom is barely existing, and even then it's only 70-80% there. There are numerous bulk-purchasing and provisioning problems to be worked out.  Those using iPads in the classroom this year will require a lot of patience and have to deal with more than a few hassles to get the job done.  It's far too early for iPads to be even common in classrooms let alone for those adopting them to worry about costs.  Those that can afford them are already gingerly putting their toes in.  


     


    The same kind of arguments could be made against his idea that the current iPads are too heavy and "not portable" (enough).  Sure, they are heavy, and sure they could be lighter and smaller.  So could laptops.  So could almost everything.  The point is they are the smallest, lightest classroom computer technology that's ever been available and much lighter, and much more portable than the tool they are currently replacing ... the laptop. 

  • Reply 10 of 101
    lkrupplkrupp Posts: 7,162member

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by monstrosity View Post


    Has anybody considered that this 'mini iPad' might have an E-Ink style display to compete with the kindle? 



     


    Why in the world would Apple need to "compete" with the Kindle?

  • Reply 11 of 101
    monstrositymonstrosity Posts: 2,206member

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by lkrupp View Post


     


    Why in the world would Apple need to "compete" with the Kindle?



     


    Because Apple don't currently have an E-Ink display device, and if they did, the would be 'competing'. As Apple currently has nothing to offer in terms of battery life, viewable in the sun, and cost.

  • Reply 12 of 101
    mstonemstone Posts: 11,510member

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Gazoobee View Post


    Separate from the issue of whether Apple will in fact make a smaller iPad, all his reasons here are crap IMO.  


     


    If a school can't afford a $399.00 iPad, they are a school that has never had technology in the class before, because a $399.00 iPad is yards and miles cheaper of what schools that *do* use technology in the classrooms have had previously, i.e. - laptops.  


     


    In Educational institutions all over North America, some classrooms use sets of laptops as a teaching tool and typically have carts that contain and maintain them.  Replacing these carts and laptops with iPad sets is a cost saving, not an expense.  Any school that sees this as "expensive" is a school that didn't do the laptop thing before and is therefore an untapped market. 



    In the past the laptops were multiuser, shared among the students and they didn't take them home. iPad is single user so they will need many more iPads than they did with laptops.

  • Reply 13 of 101
    tundraboytundraboy Posts: 1,620member


    Any school district that spends money to equip each kid with a laptop or tablet is wasting your taxes.  Ask any educator who's not a paid shill for some software or hardware company.

  • Reply 14 of 101
    ericthehalfbeeericthehalfbee Posts: 4,079member


    I used to think the chances of Apple making an iPad Mini were slim at best for all the usual reasons everyone gives.


     


    Now I think they will introduce an iPad Mini, and for one reason only: to completely dominate the tablet market. The only Android tablets that are actually selling in quantity are the low-end models. High-end tablets like the Prime and Galaxy have dismal sales. By making an iPad in the $250 range Apple would probably wipe-out the competition at the low end.

  • Reply 15 of 101
    paxmanpaxman Posts: 4,607member

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by lkrupp View Post


     


    Why in the world would Apple need to "compete" with the Kindle?



    Yes, Apple is not in competition with the Kindle. I think the Kindle might just beat itself out of the market place without too much help from Apple ;)


     


    But I can totally see a smaller form iPad. It makes good sense for Apple to offer a different form factor. Yes yes - there are technical issues and yes, some compromises will have to be made, but this is the reality. When Laptops first came on the market there was basically one size screen. This has evolved into sizes targeted for different purposes. This is inevitable for the tablet, too. The market has matured quickly and tablets are becoming the new laptop of choice for an awful lot of people. The regular iPad is the 15" MB in the tablet market and there is a need for a smaller form factor. I am sure there will be some cannibalisation  of the regular iPad but I am not so sure educational institutions will automatically opt for  a smaller less expensive variety. If it it can serve the educational purpose as well as a larger version, then yes. 


     


    Personally I spend a LOT of time on my iPhone and often find it too cramped. I go from that to my MB to my 24" monitor. A small iPad would be great to have around the house.

  • Reply 16 of 101
    jragostajragosta Posts: 10,473member
    tundraboy wrote: »
    Any school district that spends money to equip each kid with a laptop or tablet is wasting your taxes.  Ask any educator who's not a paid shill for some software or hardware company.

    Really? Care to provide evidence to back your claim?

    There were a number of reports a few months ago showing that students who used iPads did far better than students who did not. For example:
    http://www.acu.edu/technology/mobilelearning/research/ipad-studies.html

    So where's your evidence that it's a waste of taxes?
    solipsismx wrote: »
    I have trouble seeing the benefit of Apple weakening their iPad brand with a smaller, non-Retina, non-IPS panel that is using other components from several years prior and likely having some reduced components like the Kindle Fire to keep costs down.

    No, but that's not to say that they can't sell something equivalent to the iPad 2 at 7".
  • Reply 17 of 101
    gs turngs turn Posts: 30member

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by lkrupp View Post


     


    Why in the world would Apple need to "compete" with the Kindle?



    They do not need to compete with Kindle, they need to compete with the lower price point where millions of people are stuck.  My daughter's family wanted an iPad for Christmas but could not afford it so they settled for a Kindle Fire.  Not because they wanted a Kindle but because they wanted an iPad and could not afford one.


     


    The argument about sandpaper for fingers that Jobs made makes no sense since iPod Touch only has a 3.5" screen and sells very well without sandpaper.  Jobs is known for saying things like that then doing a 180 and doing just the opposite.  His argument would be greater justification for enlarging the iPhone and iPod than for not producing a iPad Mini.


     


    An iPad Mini with the same resolution and aspect ratio as the iPad 2 would have a near retina display because the smaller size would almost double the pixels per inch.  It also would not be as small as the Fire because the iPad aspect ratio would give a lot more square inches in 7" than 7" does in a 16:9 aspect ratio. 


     


    Screen.png

  • Reply 18 of 101
    anonymouseanonymouse Posts: 6,581member

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by MacKrazyinKC View Post



    Note previous Appleinsider post on "Collapse of Kindle..". All probably due to it not being an iPad. New form factor may be a iTouch replacement but it would not be a mini iPad. Why add a smaller competitor line that could conceivably take away from the premier product of the Apple line up?. Silly to suggest it.


     


    Yeah, this "analysis" article is pretty funny stuff coming right on the heels of the other article.

  • Reply 19 of 101
    solipsismxsolipsismx Posts: 19,566member
    jragosta wrote: »
    Really? Care to provide evidence to back your claim?
    There were a number of reports a few months ago showing that students who used iPads did far better than students who did not. For example:
    http://www.acu.edu/technology/mobilelearning/research/ipad-studies.html
    So where's your evidence that it's a waste of taxes?
    No, but that's not to say that they can't sell something equivalent to the iPad 2 at 7".

    1) You can't just change display sizes at will with iOS and expect to maintain the user experience. There are very specific reasons and methods for Apple's display changes. Apple planned for the iPad (3) to scale the display by 2x resolution at the cost of making it thicker, heavier, and warmer than the previous iPad. It's probably even costlier to Apple.

    2) Apple created the iPod Touch after the iPhone using inferior components that help reduce costs. Having the iPod Touch without an IPS Retina Display, less RAM, etc. didn't hurt the iPhone brand because it's not an iPhone. They have to tread carefully. Many companies have ruined brand names by trying to convince buyers that premium, well respected brands were still of high quality when they weren't. It might take awhile but customers catch on and it's hard to recover. Just look at Sony. Who still thinks Trinitron is a respected brand?

    3) If they call a 7.85" tablet-like device an iPad I have a hard time thinking it would be sold to everyone, especially if it uses the same 163 PPI TN displays of the iPhone 3GS. And how will they do the OS, SDK and App Store? Those will all take time and money to adjust, it's not like the iPhone and iPod Touch where the resolution and size are exactly the same.
  • Reply 20 of 101
    anonymouseanonymouse Posts: 6,581member

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by monstrosity View Post


     


    Because Apple don't currently have an E-Ink display device, and if they did, the would be 'competing'. As Apple currently has nothing to offer in terms of battery life, viewable in the sun, and cost.



     


    If Apple were Google or Microsoft, companies with a "take over the world" mentality, they might actually think a "reason" like that makes sense. Since they aren't Google or Microsoft, and have a "let's make great stuff" mentality, they likely view this kind of "reason" as insanity.

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