Steve Jobs said it would never happen. Yet a smaller Apple just fell from the iPad tree.
Apple execs have finally unveil the company’s long-awaited iPad mini — something Jobs once declared the company would never do. The new $329 product is meant to compete with smaller, 7-inch tablets from companies like Google and Amazon that are nipping at the tech giant’s heals.
“You knew there’d be something called Mini in this presentation,” joked vice president of marketing Phil Schiller before revealing the hotly anticipated gadget. Apple has sold 84 million iPads since their debut in April 2010, he said.
“So this iPad mini is just 7.2 mm thick. That’s about a quarter thinner than the fourth-generation iPad. Thinner than a pencil,” CEO Tim Cook told the crowd earlier. The new product has the same resolution as the larger display 1,024 × 768, but it should look sharper thanks to the smaller screen.
“You can hold it in one hand,” he said. It’s not just a shrunken down iPad. It’s an entirely new design.” Yet the new mini will run all of the software designed for the full-size siblings, he said. The mini will start with 16GB of storage at $329; a 4G model will cost an additional $129.
Cook announced an update to the iPad prior to that that he labeled a “fourth-generation” model with updated specifications. But he began the event by touting the company’s success in software — especially the app store.
“We’ve reached another milestone — customers have downloaded 35 billion apps from the store. This is jaw dropping,” Cook said.
The event comes just days before Microsoft starts selling a new version of its Windows operating system, one designed to work on both traditional computers and tablets. Microsoft will also release its own tablet, the Surface, on Friday.
It will be slightly larger than the full-sized iPad.