The iPad mini with Retina Display has reportedly entered full-scale production and the volume of supply reportedly matches last year's model.
When Apple announced the iPad mini it also announced its fourth-generation flagship iPad. The iPad mini's 7.9-inch display also brought with it a new design from Apple. The mini has much thinner side bezels around its screen compared to its older siblings and uses a special glass panel for its display that allowed Apple to reduce the overall size and weight of the slate. Apple is going to use the iPad mini's design in the upcoming iPad 5 and leaked images have shown the new design allows for the 9.7-inch display but the new panels allow it to be smaller, thinner, and lighter than previous models.
The iPad mini was loved for its design and features, but faced criticism from the moment its display resolution was announced at its event - iPad mini would not have a Retina Display. Its screen has a much lower resolution display compared to similar Android tablets, but consumers still bought millions of the smaller iPad. It is believed that the iPad mini sold more units than the fourth-generation iPad. Apple is not going to repeat the same mistake twice and will be launching an iPad mini with Retina Display alongside the iPad 5 sometime this fall and the slates are already in production.
"Based [on what] we are seeing in the [production] pipeline...The volumes are similar to the iPad mini that we saw in Q4 of last year," said Vinita Jakhanwal, director of mobile and emerging displays at IHS iSuppli, referring to display production, as cited by CNET.
The iPad Mini with Retina Display is expected to use a 7.9-inch 2048 x 1536 display. This would match the resolution of the current 9.7-inch fourth-generation iPad. Since the display is smaller, its pixel density will increase from 264 pixels-per-inch (ppi) on the iPad 4 to about 324 ppi on the Mini as noted by CNET.
If this report is true, the new mini will be in high demand. Many people passed on the first-generation due to its display and it still was completely sold out for a few weeks after its release.
Apple is expected to launch the iPad mini with Retina Display and the iPad 5 sometime in the fall.