four iPad mini retina display

Apple just issued a press release, announcing that it will begin offering NTT DoCoMo versions of its iPad Air and Retina iPad mini in Japan next month. The carrier, which is the largest in the country, began offering the iPhone for the first time last fall.

The new iPads will be available for pre-order starting June 2, and will officially launch in retail stores a week later on June 10. Those interested in picking up one of the tablets can choose from a variety of purchase plans, some of which call for $0 down…

Here’s the press release:

TOKYO and CUPERTINO, California—May 28, 2014—NTT DOCOMO and Apple® today announced that iPad Air™ and iPad mini™ with Retina® display will be available on the DOCOMO network beginning on Tuesday, June 10. iPad Air and iPad mini with Retina display offer the power and capability of the A7 chip, advanced graphics on a Retina display, and high-speed LTE performance,¹ making everything you do faster and better, all while delivering all-day battery life.²

“With the addition of iPad alongside iPhone, we now offer the complete lineup of Japan’s most popular mobile devices on the nation’s most reliable LTE network,” said Kaoru Kato, President and CEO of NTT DOCOMO, INC. “We know our customers will enjoy using iPad Air and iPad mini, and anticipate that new customers will look to experience these amazing devices on our high-quality network with our new billing plan.”

“We are extremely happy for iPad to join iPhone on NTT DOCOMO’s network,” said Tim Cook, Apple’s CEO. “The results on iPhone have been tremendous, and we look forward to delivering iPad to NTT DOCOMO customers.”

Apple has been extremely successful in Japan in recent years, despite its initial struggles. Citing an MM Research study, Bloomberg reported earlier this month that the iPhone now accounts for more than one-third of the country’s mobile phone market.

The iPad Air and iPad mini with Retina display originally launched in November of last year, and both are expected to get a refresh this fall. We’ve heard very little about what new features the updates will bring, but rumor has it that Touch ID is in the mix.