Apple planning to release an iPad mini?

A new Apple rumor (take with regular pinch of salt) states that a smaller version of Apple’s hit tablet will come to market in the third quarter.

The report from Chinese portal Netease, says that 6 million units will be ready for launch, and the smaller tablet could sell for $249 to $299.

While these rumors have persisted almost as long as the iPad has existed, it’s still interesting to pay attention to.

There is speculation that Apple may be preparing the smaller iPad as a response to the expected launch of competitive devices running on Windows 8.

If this does happen at some point, this would be absolutely DEVASTATING for Microsoft. As the established leader in the tablet space, Apple iPads are considered the premium device in the market right now.

The major barrier to even more sales of the iPad is it’s premium price ($499 and above for the new iPad). A substantial drop in the price coupled with the introduction of a new form factor would virtually lock down the tablet market for Apple in my opinion.

It would be (to all intents and purposes) game over.

What do you think?

Would Windows 8 tablets stand a chance against a $249 iPad?

Use the comments below and let me know…

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