Apple is rumoured to be considering dropping support for the iPad mini line as it looks to focus on the new super-sized iPad Pro.
Apparently, when the iPad range receives its annual update in a little under a year’s time (we’ve only just had one, remember?), Apple is considering ditching the smaller tablet in favour of a new, larger iPad model.
That’s the suggestion being made by Taiwan’s Economic Daily News, which claims to have sourced its information from the Apple supply chain.
Of course, supply chain reports are famously unreliable. While there may indeed be a solid indication that Apple is looking at alternative tablet strategies, the ever-changing nature of these decisions (which suppliers are rarely a part of) makes such far-out projections unreliable at best.
But there is a certain logic to this prediction. Apple surprised many recently when it launched a gently warmed over iPad mini 2 and called it the iPad mini 3.
Sitting alongside a considerably improved iPad Air 2, the contrast was unflattering to say the least, and the reviews have been predictably damning.
Apple often pulls resources from product lines that are no longer profitable, or that it no longer sees a future for. This could be a prelude for a complete ditching of the iPad mini form factor – or at least a holding pattern where only minimal hardware improvements are made compared to other models.
There’s also the fact that Apple recently released the iPhone 6 Plus which, with its 5.5-inch display, renders the iPad mini a whole lot less useful than it used to be. Now that Apple has finally succumbed to pressure to create a large phone (or two), it’s possible that the company no longer sees any point for a compact tablet in the range.