Rumour: No Retina iPad mini in 2013

iPad Retina display

The iPad Retina display

The new iPad mini will not have a Retina display.

That’s according to Richard Shim, an analyst with NPD DisplaySearch.

Ever since the iPad mini was announced, the display has been controversial. The 1024 x 768 screen is nowhere near as high res as some of its competitors in the Android arena, and Apple was seen to be cutting corners by some.

Predictions about the next iPad mini fall into two camps. There are people who think Apple will rush out the Retina model to compete with Samsung and Google as soon as possible. Others think Apple will stick to its normal upgrade pattern: give the next iPad mini a small spec boost, but save the really big revisions for the iPad mini 3.

Conflicting rumours have been emerging ever since the original mini was released, but the NPD DisplaySearch blog is the latest one to claim that the Retina mini is still a long way off. CNet seems to agree.

Apple could struggle to squeeze the Retina display into the small mini case, since it’s significantly thicker than the non-Retina. It would also make the mini tablet heavier. Both are good reasons for Apple to hold off and try to get more mileage from the existing design. After all, the mini is a phenomenally good seller as it is. Taking 2013 shipments into accounts, the mini it is expected to overtake the full-sized iPad with ease.

One thing is certain: the new mini will benefit from iOS 7. We also expect it to have an upgraded processor. Richard Shim’s blog post says that it could be thinner, but that seems unlikely if Apple will have to make it thicker again to incorporate the Retina display in the future.

As for a release date, we are still expecting to see something before Christmas. But that Retina model might not see the light of day until spring 2014.

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