Opponents of the rumored iPad mini have continued to recall Jobs’ disdain for a smaller screen as evidence that it won’t happen. And technically, they’re right. The CEO has been quoted as saying 7-inch displays are too small.

But that doesn’t mean it won’t happen. And in fact, according to an internal email that just popped up in the ongoing Samsung-Apple trial, the CEO actually showed some interest in the idea as recent as January 2011.

Updated: screenshot of the actual email thread after the break…

CNET shares a copy of the email thread:

The email came up during a line of questioning with Apple’s SVP of iOS software Scott Forstall on the stand. The Verge reports:

“Wow. Forstall is shown a 2011 email from Eddy Cue, in which Cue forwarded an article that a journalist wrote about dumping the iPad after using a Galaxy Tab. Cue writes “Having used a Samsung Galaxy [Tab], I tend to agree with many of the comments below…I believe there will be a 7-inch market and we should do one. I expressed this to Steve several times since Thanksgiving and he seemed very receptive the last time.”

This is interesting, to say the least, as it comes amidst a flurry of rumors and reports claiming that Apple will be unveiling an all-new 7.85-inch tablet this fall.

Many folks believe that a smaller iPad would be Apple’s response to Google’s new Nexus 7 tablet, but it’s obvious they’ve been thinking about it for quite a while.

  • I really don’t understand why everyone is obsessed with this 7″ tablet.

    • Cause it’s cheap. I wonder if iPod touchs wouldn’t be cannibalized by a cheap iPad though…

    • Me too. 7″ tablet have a too small screen. iPad is way way better

    • Geeks on Hugs

      You can do real work on a larger screen but for pure consumption 7″ is for teh win.

  • Matthew Agostino

    I gotta say, I’ve had the nexus 7 for 9 days now, and my ipad is sitting in the corner of my office crying. I love it, its my first android device, and I’m pretty impressed. It seems that Google is catching up to apple. A year ago, an Android device looked and preformed terrible compared to what it is now. There is a free port of Counter Strike in the Android market, its awesome, i cant put it down. With the option to connect a PS3 controller just makes it that much better. And for the price $250 it can’t be beat.

  • Lol crying huh, this is because u pirate games which ppl work so hard on

    • Matthew Agostino

      pirate games? Its a FREE port of Counter Strike..and open source game? OPEN SOURCE…..but your probably 15 years old and have no idea what counter strike is.

      • Counter Strike isnt open source…

  • even if its a mod, its not open source because it requires the purchase of half life. CS is now its own standalone game and costs money. If anything, the “android version” is just illegal copy or just a ripoff. I couldnt say for sure because ive never seen it.