Report: iPad mini with Retina display 'likely' coming this year

By on August 1, 2013, 11:15 AM

Apple apparently isn't quite finished with its component deals with Samsung, as it is "likely" to use a 'Retina' display from the Korean firm in their upcoming iPad mini refresh. Despite the two companies being bitter rivals, Apple has been forced to switch back to Samsung alongside Sharp and LG Display for high-density displays as their current provider, AU Optronics, is not able to deliver the volume it requires in a timely fashion.

The report, which comes from The Wall Street Journal, claims Apple is preparing a high-resolution iPad mini for release in Q4. The tablet is roughly the same size as the existing model, featuring a 7.9-inch display, and Apple is reportedly "contemplating" colored back panels for the device.

If the next iPad mini is to have a Retina display, it goes against what recent iOS 7 code revealed: an upcoming "iPad 2,8", "iPad 2,9" or "iPad 2,10" should feature the same display resolution as the current model, with a performance boost thanks to Apple including their A6 chipset in the device.

The increased pressure from Google in the tablet market, especially with the release of the new Nexus 7 with high-resolution 1920 x 1080 display, is essentially making it hard for Apple to ignore an improvement in the area. While a high-resolution iPad mini is likely, we don't expect Apple to match the $229 starting price of the Nexus 7.

Despite Apple's continued reliance on Samsung for device components, the company has been trying to distance itself from the number one smartphone OEM. Rumors suggest that starting next year Apple will begin transitioning some chip production to TSMC. Samsung is to remain a supplier for various components but if the trend continues, soon all that's left between the companies could be lawsuits.

User Comments: 3

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Guest said:

Too late for some, since discovering the pure google 4.2.2 (now 4.3) nexus devices, I have replaced all my idevices in my family with the nexus line. My own phone and tablet, my parents iphones replaced, my nephews iPhone replace, my daughters iPhone replaced, my parents ipad replaced. Sorry apple, your products are awesome, but just wayyyyy too much over priced for lesser of a product.

MilwaukeeMike said:

Retina Mini Likely? Perhaps. Anandtech had a interesting piece on the possibility of retina mini back when they reviewed the first Mini. There were quite a few technical reasons why they felt Apple wouldn't make a mini with a Retina screen. (

However, that was (as the article mentions) before the new Nexus 7. Although I would assume Apple would have had to been planning for the new Mini before the details for the new 7 were out.

The other reason they might have one is Apple loves to resell the same products with incremental improvements.

St1ckM4n St1ckM4n said:

I still don't know how they can make a retina mini, purely from a software standpoint. iPhone 3 > 4 was okay, because it was 4x the resolution. iPad > ipad Retina was okay, because 4x resolution. iPad mini was okay, because same resolution as original iPad.

The Apple Dev Kit doesn't support display scaling. This is why we got those ridiculous bars on the iPhone5 when it came out and also why iPhone apps on the iPad used to just be blown up. Apple needs to either:

a) Make a retina display using a multiple of a previous resolution.

b) Re-write their entire dev kit and philosophy.

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