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New rumors: iPad Mini to sport 7.85-inch Sharp IGZO display and cost $249-299

July 4, 2012

Although we here at Android Authority are first and foremost preoccupied with bringing you all the news that matter regarding Android devices, we like to keep an open mind and have a perspective on the technology world as a whole. That’s why we’re also interested in what Apple will be coming up with in the near future to face the growing competition and great progress of Android.

The newly released Nexus 7 tablet, but also the upcoming Kindle Fire 2 device(s), are widely seen as the primary gadgets that can cripple the new iPad’s sales, which, according to some reports, are not that great. This already complicated “equation” will, however, most likely get even more complicated by the end of the year, with rumors these past several months pointing towards the imminent release of an “iPad Mini”.

The iPad’s supposed little brother hasn’t been officially confirmed by anyone at Apple, but rumors, leaks and reports are piling up from all possible sources to pretty much confirm it’s coming. The latest such report comes from “anonymous industry sources”, so it’s not to be taken very seriously, but shouldn’t be ignored either, as we’ve seen numerous such rumors in the past proving to be accurate after all.

One of the details mentioned by this latest report fits pretty nicely with the already existing rumors, which is why we can say with almost certainty that the future iPad Mini’s price is set in stone. If all these speculations prove to be true, Apple will be pricing its upcoming gadget between $249 and $299, making it a true and savage “Nexus 7 killer”.

For that price, you might not expect much from Apple in terms of tech specs and features, but at least when talking about the tablet’s display, things are set to be looking surprisingly good. It’s therefore very possible for the iPad Mini to sport a 7.85-inch Sharp IGZO panel with 330 ppi pixel density.

IGZO stands for “indium gallium zinc oxide” and is a relatively new technology that allows TFT (thin-film transistor) screens to be thinner than usual, but at the same time to be as reliable as possible. Japanese multinational corporation Sharp has announced the mass production of such panels for tablets and TV sets to be launched in 2012, and the company’s collaboration with Apple has been rumored for a pretty long time, even before the iPad Mini was speculated upon.

Unfortunately, MyDriversreport on the iPad Mini only mentions these two pieces of information, leaving all of the other supposed specs and features of the tablet hanging, as well as its availability details. Still, this is enough to start viewing Apple’s future gadget as a possible very strong competitor for Google’s and Amazon’s 7-inchers.

Do you guys agree? Would you ditch the Nexus 7 and the upcoming Kindle Fire 2 for this rather mysterious iPad Mini? And most importantly, do you buy into these rumors? Will Apple actually do what was unthinkable until a couple of years back (release a budget-friendly 7-inch tablet)?