During the event earlier this week, Apple announced that the iPad Air will take over the top-of-the-line spot, starting at U$499, while the iPad 2 will keep on being sold for the same U$399 as before. The original iPad mini will also keep on being sold for a reduced price of U$299, while the Retina iPad mini will start at the same U$399 as the iPad 2.
The iPad 2 price doesn’t make that much sense to me. I completely understand the decision to keep on selling this model, as It appeals to those who want an iPad but don’t care about having the latest iPad. And the data disclosed today by Consumer Intelligence Research Partners is a proof of that, as it shows that the iPad 2 was responsible for 22% of the total US iPad sales in the last quarter.
Trusting data like this is rather risky, however, as they’re always based on estimates and… educated guesses. But assuming for argument’s sake that this data is accurate, the current price policy for the new iPad line seems unapologetically confusing.
You have the iPad 2 carrying a 2-year-old hardware (no Retina, A5 processor) being sold for the same price as the new iPad mini (with Retina and the A7), and for just U$100 less than the iPad Air (Retina, A7). Meanwhile, the first iPad mini (which has the same specs as the iPad 2) had its price cut from U$329 to U$299. Even if you leave aside the fact that in 2 years the production cost for this hardware (especially the A5 silicon) has been invariably reduced, the fact that the mini had a U$30 price cut and the iPad 2 didn’t is rather confusing.
If in the last quarter the iPad 2 was responsible for 22% of the total iPad sales in the US, the iPad mini represented a total of 32% of the pie. With the first mini costing less but not the iPad 2, I’m not sure what Apple expects to happen here. Reducing the iPad 2 price to something around U$349 would have seemed like a reasonable thing to do, although even so it would still seem a little costy, considering the options provided by the rest of the line.
As one sweaty soon-to-be-retired-CEO once said, “let’s just see what happens”. I am honestly hoping to see how my assessment of the situation is wrong 3 months from now. But I’m looking very hard and I can’t see it now.
Now it’s confirmed. The iPad mini in Brazil starts at R$1.300 (or U$576), up to R$2.150 (U$954) for the most expensive model.
I found an article by TechHunter UK which lists prices for the iPad mini around the world. Approximating the conversion, prices in the USA (U$329), UK (U$413), Germany (U$345), France (U$353), Switzerland (U$435), Spain (U$338), Japan (U$333), South Korea (U$404), Hong Kong (U$322), Singapore (U$371), Australia (U$333) and New Zealand (U$326) average to U$353. That’s U$223 less than over here.
It’s pretty frustrating to have held out for so long, just to buy it when it was officially released in Brazil. After the news came out that the iPad mini had been licensed by Anatel to start production at Foxconn in Brazil, I figured it would be a nice gesture to buy it when it came out over here. Maybe it would help to show that if there was an effort to push prices down, there would be a greater demand for the product, right? Nope.
Now not only will we have to pay almost as much as what a 32GB retina 4th gen iPad costs for a 16GB mini, but also the models being sold here are the same as the rest of the world, manufactured in China. What the hell are those iPads mini being produced in Brazil for?
U$576. That’s more expensive than the 64GB model in the US. I guess it’ll have to wait.
Note: The Dollar/Brazilian Real exchange rate has been extremely unstable in Brazil. While U$1 had been stable at around R$2 for a while, in the last month it has climbed to R$2.25, which is the conversion I used for these comparisons.
8 months and 2 days after its release, the iPad mini will finally start selling in Brazil, according to retailers such as Fnac.
I’m just really, really afraid of being put off by the prices (which naturally haven’t been disclosed yet). Despite Foxconn’s assembey of iPads mini in Brazil, it’s still uncertain if these are the devices that will be sold here, and if so, if this will have a (hopefully positive) reflex on prices, since the iPhones assembled and sold in Brazil are still the world’s most expensive ones.
But that’s excellent news. I was afraid that this first gen iPad mini would never make it here.
Today Tecnoblog posted a story about an exciting finding regarding the iPad mini for Brazilians. It is a document by ANATEL (our FCC) that authorizes the production of the iPad mini (model A1454 / WiFi+3G) in Brazil, at the Foxconn plant in Jundiaí. This was the first piece of news since November, when the iPad mini was ratified by ANATEL for commercialization in Brazil.
Since then, the iPad mini has been released in countless countries, including Argentina, but up until now there was absolutely nothing that hinted at a Brazilian release of the iDevice. I wonder if Apple was waiting for this approval to begin producing and finally selling the iPad mini in Brazil.
If that is the case, it does make sense. In Argentina, the iPad mini starts at what would be R$1559. Since Brazil has the most expensive iDevices in South America (and pretty much the rest of the world too), the fiscal incentives for a domestic production could result in a very positive surprise for Brazilians when the iPad mini finally hits the shelves here.
Cult of Mac brings a story reporting how users appear to be having battery issues after updating their iPhones 5 and iPads mini to iOS 6.0.2, “even when the devices go unused for long periods of time.” Long periods of time? The update came out 2 days ago!
The story brings the information that if you look up “iOS 6.0.2 battery” on Twitter, you’ll see several people reporting problems. I did the same on Google for 6.0.1, 6.0, 5.1.1, 5.0.1 and 5.0 also found users reporting how their batteries are doing worse compared to the last update. On the other hand, I also found people saying that their batteries are better after these same updates.
Towards the end of the story, Killian Bell writes something that I think is fundamental to understanding these update/battery issues that keep coming up:
“Personally, I haven’t noticed this issue on either my iPhone 5 or my iPad mini, but to be honest, I haven’t been looking out for it.”
To be clear, I don’t deny that there may be a battery issue with iOS 6.0.2. Since I don’t have an iPhone 5 or iPad mini, so I can’t test it for myself. But it’s curious to see how every single iOS update brings the same problems, the same news, and how the problems seem to disappear as the news about them start to get less pageviews.
I feel certain the Mini will go retina, and that when it does, it will do so exactly like all previous iOS devices: same physical size, double the pixel resolution. The only question is when. The iPhone went retina in the fourth generation; the full-size iPad in the third. Seems like too much to ask for the Mini to do so in its second.
I think it’s unlikely that the next iPad mini won’t go Retina. While the iPhone 4 introduced the technology, the 3rd gen iPad was a statement that it wouldn’t be restricted to the iPhone, being even extended to MacBooks later on.
When the iPad 2 came out non-Retina, it was ok because people were still hung up with the fact that they wanted a front-facing camera, and there was the fact that it also brought a gyro. Retina came to the iPad when the 3rd gen brought internal-only improvements.
Now the iPad mini already has all of that. It actually has the exact same hardware and features as the iPad 2. This is why if a second generation Mini (which will likely have the same hardware specs as the 3rd gen iPad) doesn’t go Retina, I’m not exactly sure of what they could do with. Unless they come out with an iPad mini S, with under-the-hood-only improvements, which wouldn’t be that exciting. Especially if this only happens a year from now.
The first iPad mini ad is excellent. Simple and cute, it makes Heart and Soul plays on a loop in your head all day long.
Today Apple began the campaign rollout, running two new ads on TV, and they just put it up on their website. The first one is called Photos, and shows in an interesting way, pictures that tell little stories through both devices. The second one is called Books, and I think it’s a little bit sillier. It shows books with opposing elements in the titles, like East/West, Sun/Moon, and so on.
Now that Apple has added the iPad mini to its already extensive product lineup, it got even harder to decide which device to buy. If you’re in doubt, there are a few factors to be considered. Price, usage and relevance should be taken into account, in order for you to make the right decision and not end up regretting the choice a few months down the road, getting to the conclusion that you should have made a different choice. Here are a few tips that might help you decide: Continue reading iPad, iPad mini, or iPod Touch?→