Apple is preparing a Retina version of the iPad mini for release in the third quarter of 2013, according to DisplaySearch NPD analyst Richard Shim. This is not the first time we are hearing about a Retina-equipped mini, however Shim's claim goes further suggesting that Apple is already working on a third generation iPad mini as well, which would be slated for a first quarter 2014 release.
The upgrade for the second-gen Q3 2013 model will bring the 7.9-inch iPad mini in line with the rest of the company’s current offerings, and the third-gen model will feature the new display and an updated processor. This would be a similar product roll out to the third- and fourth-generation iPads, which were released roughly six months apart.
No information is currently available about which type of display technology Apple would use for the new mini, but Shim is speculating that the same low-temperature polysilicon (LTPS) display used in the iPhone 5 is a likely option.
As we previously reported, Apple was potentially facing delays in the manufacturing of the new iPad mini. This corresponds with what we are now hearing from Shim, as delays pertaining to the iPad mini could be related to the LTPS display technology. LTPS production yields become increasingly slim as screen size increases, and thus would be more difficult to manufacture for the iPad mini's 7.9-inch display than the iPhone 5's.