While there may be a significant amount of rumours surrounding the second generation Kindle Fire, another unannounced tablet has also been creating waves around the Internet. This tablet is none other than the rumoured Apple iPad mini. This time around, the news of this tablet comes from CNET who have obtained information via Japanese website Macotakara who state that the smaller iPad would be as thin as the third generation iPod touch.

Expected to be as slim as the thrid generation iPod touch

Expected to be as slim as the thrid generation iPod touch

The report states, “Japanese-language Web site Macotakara claims the iPad Mini — rumored to use a 7.85-inch display — will be almost as thin as the iPod touch (4th generation), citing “reliable Chinese sources.” That would indeed be thin. The iPod touch is a mere 7.2 mm thick — a couple of millimeters thinner than the Retina iPad. The dimensions are similar to Google's Nexus 7: the height is about the same, while the width is a “little bit” bigger, Macotakara said.”

The report goes on to claim that the design of the iPad mini would not be similar to that of the current generation iPads but instead would be pretty different and incorporate a third generation iPod nano-like design. The report states, “Some models may come with 3G, too, though not all carriers may necessarily offer a 3G version, Macotakara said. And the interesting tidbits don't stop there. Though trial production is being done in China, mass production will take place in Brazil.

According to a recent report, Apple component suppliers in Asia are preparing for mass production in September of a tablet computer with a smaller screen than the iPad, confirming that the launch of the device is near. The report went on to mention that officials at the component suppliers, who did not wish to be named, said this week that Apple has asked them to prepare for the mass production of the smaller tablet. Earlier this year, there had been reports doing the rounds that indicated that Apple was testing a tablet with a smaller display, but hadn't decided yet whether to proceed with the production.

It may be really interesting to see if Apple does launch an iPad with a lower budget as the brand has lost a significant amount of market share to 7-inch tablets. The main competitor is the Amazon Kindle Fire, which has eaten quite a bit of Apple’s share in the tablet market, in comparison to other tablets. Former Apple CEO, Steve Jobs, had always been against a smaller-sized tablet as he believed that only the 9.7-inch form factor was the way to go.

An interesting thing is that Apple has never succumbed to competition by launching products with lower prices. The brand faced stiff competition when netbooks running Windows were launched. However, they did not concede and instead unveiled the MacBook Air, which is still quite costly in comparison to netbooks. On the other hand, to tackle the competition they unveiled a new product altogether, the iPad.

With ASUS and Google already releasing the Google Nexus 7 and Amazon readying to release the Kindle Fire 2, it would make sense for Apple to launch a smaller tablet. In the past, there had been rumours of Apple launching an iPhone nano, but it did not bear fruit. As of now, however, these are mere rumours and speculations regarding a smaller iPad and all will be known in the next few months, if Apple does intend to launch an iPad mini.

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