Report: Apple’s $329 iPad mini is an ‘absolute home run’

By , Oct 24, 2012

Analysts are fawning over Apple’s new iPad mini, one describing the smaller tablet as “an absolute home run.” Although investors concerned over the $329 price tag briefly sent shares of the Cupertino, Calif. firm down, Wall Street dismissed the worries.

“Due to the high quality of the hardware, we expect the device will be very well received by consumers once they have an opportunity to test it,” Deutsche Bank analyst Chris Whitmore said.

Although Whitmore described the iPad mini as “a modest disappointment,” he said the new iPad includes features “richer than we anticipated.”

Continuing that theme, analyst Charlie Wolf of Needham & Company said that while the mini’s $329 “left a modest price umbrella for competing 7-inch tablets, none compare with this device,” noting all iPad apps could run unchanged on the new tablet.

Shaw Wu, who maintains the iPad mini “is the competition’s worst nightmare,” Wednesday told investors some consumers who were considering the Nexus 7 or Kindle Fire HD “may consider [the] iPad mini instead.”

Several Wall Street voices consider the iPad mini as ensuring Apple continues to lead the overall tablet market.

“The refreshed iPad portfolio cements Apple’s competitive positioning, and we increasingly see the company sustaining a 60% share,” writes Credit Suisse analyst Kulbinder Garcha.

High-profile Apple-watcher Gene Munster of Piper Jaffray told investors price is the iPad’s headline feature. Price “is how Apple furthers markets in which it is dominant, using the iPod as a historical precedent.”

But all of Wall Street was not joining the iPad mini love-fest.

“The best is over for Apple,” according to Trip Chowdhry, analyst with Global Equities. The “iPad mini is playing catch up to Google Android, probably will have a mediocre customer adoption,” he believes.

In the case of the iPod, when Apple unveiled the iPod mini in 2004, total iPod sales rose 469 percent compared to the previous year’s 214 percent growth, according to Morgan Stanley analyst Katy Huberty.

“In other words, Apple has experience extending a product line to a smaller, cheaper form factor,” she said.

Price has never been the deciding factor for Apple fans. Unlike commodity products, such as Amazon’s Kindle or Google’s $199 Nexus 7 tablet, which are known for their low-cost offerings, Apple devices rise or fall on engineering and styling. In the case of the iPad mini, unveiling a tablet that costs less than previous Apple tablets will likely only expand the company’s leading position.

The iPad mini’s price should not be as worrisome as other concerns, such as getting enough of the tablets off assembly lines to meet the already-expected huge demand.

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  • http://www.facebook.com/joe.jonsen Joe Jonsen

    anything with an apple logo is a home run even if it total crap..lolol

    • Liu Zhenyu

      You’re total crap

      • http://www.facebook.com/joe.jonsen Joe Jonsen

        i have more apple stuff than you..

  • Johnathan Jennings

    I have an iPhone 5 and an iPad 2. Perfectly happy with both, I will not be getting one o these. Just another boring apple product. Their stuff needs a software update!!!

    • Liu Zhenyu

      Your boring. Apple is the best. Perfect!!!!!

    • http://www.facebook.com/joe.jonsen Joe Jonsen

      i have iphone4s and ipad3.. and they are only great due to being jailbrtoknen on ios5.1.1

  • http://www.facebook.com/dietermarkus Markus Hudobnik

    I like the ipad mini. Except for the price (should have at least been $300, maybe the lowest $250), A5 (I think it should have gotten A5X at the very least), and the non-retina screen. At $329 I thought it would have a retina screen and A5X. But I guess not. Apple is milking our money again because they know we apple fans will be buying one.

    • Telejeesus

      There is no use for A5X with 1024×768 display.
      CPU is as fast on A5 as in A5X(X has only double of GPU cores) and I bet games run very smoothly with that on that screen.

  • http://twitter.com/FootStepsOfTobi T0b1 Zoldyc

    i hope no one buys it.. then Apple cuts the price to $249..then BOOM!

    • http://www.facebook.com/kpango1 Kristi Pango

      Trust me, apple would never cut the price…

      • JamesR624

        Yeah! The iPhone on contract price is totally still $600. Oh wait, no it isn’t. They cut it down to $200 just months after.

      • http://www.facebook.com/kpango1 Kristi Pango

        Yeah, i know but i’m talking about an up to date product….in this case an ipad mini and of course they are going to cut the price of an old product.

    • Kaptivator

      I was thinking 249.99 or even 299.99. That 3 in the front may be a dealbreaker for some people. I know I will be ordering one for the wife, so I doubt that the price will be going down anytime soon. Maybe 2, because my daughter is at that age.

      • jgr627

        I feel u, but how old is ur daughter? I have a 3 yr old son n was wondering when is it cool to get him his own

      • Kaptivator

        My daughter is 10 but she has had access the my iPad since the first generation iPad and the iPhone ever since the 3g. We started her out with her own Kendel to see if it would be a “phase” where she would get tired of it and it would sit and collect dust. Well it has, but because she is always on one of the iPads. 3yrs old to me, may be young for their own, but great to share yours so you can sit, monitor, and teach them. Then start small with your old iPhone or something that you wouldnt mind them dropping and go from there.

    • http://twitter.com/FootStepsOfTobi T0b1 Zoldyc

      but March is coming, I expect the iPad Mini 2 to be release by then

  • ChiefSpecialK

    I’ve got a friend debating a celluar iPad mini to replace his phone. Cheaper monthly sub plus plenty of apps for VoIP.

    • http://twitter.com/jaredgibbs Armed in the Villa

      Not a bad idea actually and with Google voice, u could text too #hmmm

    • http://www.iTechBlog.in/ taran

      ipad mini don’t have normal calling feature…am i wrong..??

      • ChiefSpecialK

        It does not, but with apps like Skype or vonage you could have calling. Plus talkatone with gv is free.

      • http://www.iTechBlog.in/ taran

        ohh….if it had that calling feature…man it would have been a killer…:))

    • http://twitter.com/jmarsh5 Justin Marshall

      Is he gonna wear a trench coat all the time to be able to carry it around? Would be cool except for the size of it. Not pocketable, at least not jean pocketable.

      • ChiefSpecialK

        He wears JNCO jeans.. lol

  • http://www.facebook.com/jamie.tilden.9 Jamie Tilden

    The display looks like a big step backwards. Even in this picture I can easily tell that the colours aren’t as rich as my iPhone 5 (the purple of the iTunes icon isn’t as deep, along with that of the Messages app). Granted, the iPhone 5 has the best display on the market and is hard to match, even for other Apple products. I just think that in creating a whole new slew of iOS products, Apple could have gone the distance to create a Retina display for this iPad Mini. If it’s a family of iOS devices, why not unify them with the ideal screen resolution. (And I’m sure the technology is there; saying it’s not is kind of bullshit…especially for a powerful company like Apple.) And for a $329 price tag, I’m sure they could have met at least the standard they set with the 5th generation iPod at $299. What’s most infuriating about this is that the next iPad Mini will undoubtedly have the Retina display we all want, and that, along with other subtleties, will be the nuance of the next generation that they will market, but it won’t really be a major change at all. It’s all just very discouraging…and although the sales will surely be a “home run”, I don’t think the device really is.

    • Voice of Reason

      These promotional pictures do not show the actual display, but a screenshot applied and enhanced in Photoshop (that gloss effect isn’t real either *wink*). So it’s pretty useless trying to judge entirely on that.

      It’s obvious however that the iPad Mini’s display will be inferior when compared to the iPhone 5′s due it not being a “Retina” display. You’re right about the next iPad Mini though. You should know by now that that’s the way Apple does business so people will buy their next product. Just wait it out or find a better alternative.

    • Liu Zhenyu

      iPhone doesn’t have the best display

      • http://www.facebook.com/joe.jonsen Joe Jonsen

        yes it does

      • http://www.facebook.com/alexander.gardner.73 Alexander Sir-Cheezitz Gardner

        No, it doesn’t. There are several with better displays. Hell, the upcoming HTC J Butterfly has a full 1080p screen. Not that the difference will really be noticeable on such small screens, though.

    • http://www.facebook.com/dietermarkus Markus Hudobnik

      Unfortunately that one Nokia phone has a higher ppi. But I do agree te iphone 5 has the best display.

    • abujafer

      How can you tell how much better a screen is on your computer screen? If you say the iPhone screen is the best out there, you won’t see the same quality on your computer screen, even if it’s a picture of the iPhone 5 itself.

      I never understood that, I found it hilarious whenever a commercial for an HDTV came up when I used to watch SD.

  • http://www.facebook.com/adrian.andrews.180 Adrian Andrews

    $329 is reasonable. The starting price in the UK works out at $430 which is a bit much.

    • Yuri

      And all the products are imported from China so every where the price must be the same

      • abujafer

        Tariffs my friend. Don’t get prices up that high (nowhere near $100 increase), but they still affect the price alot. Also, I do believe the VAT is factored into the price.

  • M Last

    all of you want to be ipad mini cheaper than ipod touch?
    crazy idea!
    you have to think about it :)

  • ic0dex

    Here is what I think Apple is trying to do; they did not use a Retina display and a an A6 chip because they want to have a higher profit margin. Then when it comes to the second generation iPad mini they will invest some of that money for the Retina display and the A6 chip. If you really look at it they did rush this product to the market. They have to figure out how to cut costs down for the next-generation iPad mini. When the second generation iPad (iPad2) is out of the picture they will focus on the iPad mini. This is just my opinion!

    • http://twitter.com/MCaudebec Maxim∑

      They didn’t put retina display to avoid fragmentation and ensure the 225,000 iPad apps will be compatible with iPad mini right out of the box.

      • abujafer

        Doesn’t anyone think it’s because it’s difficult to put a damn 2058×1536 display on such a small screen? We’ve barely hit 1080p for 5-inch screens, let alone 1536p(?) for ~8-inch ones. People act as if it’s a matter of just paying an extra $20 to put one in there, and don’t realize the problems it would cause.

        And if you’re just asking for a Retina Display (not the same resolution as the iPad 3), you’re just looking for specs; that would be a horrible idea, with major incompatibility (fragmentation) issues. You should just go with Android if specs are so important to you.

  • Andrew Weissman

    $329 is a tiny bit steep, but it was probably necessary to avoid a direct clash in pricing between the base iPod Touch 5 and the iPad Mini. It does bring up an interesting argument though: iPad Mini or iPod Touch 5?

  • iUser2012

    Apple was once proud to set the trends and introduce the innovations to the market like iPad, iPhone, iPad and retina display etc.however as the market catches up easily they fail to keep up the pace and with iPad mini they become a follower of Google and amazon. If they don’t prevent it through patent wars some other company might take the lead away and Apple might face the same fate as it did for Macs early 90s.

    iDevices are still cool and will attract customers up to certain point (not at iPad Mini price most likely, though there are Apple fans will buy it at any cost) despite their so called newer generations becoming not a new generation but hardware updates toctach up with rivals and iOSremaining primitivewhen it comes to personalization.

  • http://www.facebook.com/dietermarkus Markus Hudobnik

    I will we extremely happy with apple if they give us a really good software upgrade next year. (Ios 7). Devices keep coming out, but we need an upgraded OS that has more functionality

    • http://www.facebook.com/joe.jonsen Joe Jonsen

      dont hold your breath

  • mwpitt52

    Wi-Fi version will not have GPS for turn by turn directions.

  • http://twitter.com/GuyBey0ndC00L eDDie

    Reasons Apple didn’t make the iPad mini more powerful or the same has iPad 3 or now iPad 4.
    1. Keeps the cost down by using iPad 2 processor, and Resolution.
    2. If iPad mini had Retina display it would cost more and there would be no point to buy an iPad 3 or now iPad 4
    3. It very easy to build since and cheap since there no Retina display and iPad none retina apps are ready to use right out the box with no adjusting Apps Resolution.
    4. This is a Testing Ground for future iPad minis with Retina displayin the future. Remember iPod Touch got Retina for the first time this year and uses the same screen has iPhone 5.
    5. Most people still use iPad2 and this will make them finally update to something new without breaking the bank.
    Bonus: New Share Data Plans now have a real reason. iPad Mini 32 gb Wifi Only will the sweet spot.

    Other Thought: iPad Mini name is such a Stupid Name. It should have been called ” iPad Air” like Mac Book Pro and Mac Book Air.
    Apple did say the mini is 50 something % lighter.