iPad mini launch may see new full-size iPad 4G unveiled

The iPad mini is due to launch tomorrow, and alongside it a tweaked 9.7in iPad with the Lightning connector and worldwide 4G may also be introduced.

Tomorrow’s iPad mini launch may be an even bigger deal than we thought. 9to5Mac writes that its sources say a new version of the 9.7in iPad will also get a grand unveiling tomorrow, alongside the iPad mini and the rumoured 13in Retina display MacBook Pro.

Before you get too excited, the changes are largely functional rather than the “magical”, life-changing Apple norm. The new edition of the iPad is expected to replace the 30-pin Apple connector with the Lightning socket that was introduced with the iPhone 5, and pack-in proper worldwide 4G connectivity.

A new 4G iPad would let you connect with EE’s 4G network, due to launch fully in the UK later this year. At present, we only have access to slower 3G connections here in the UK.

The revamped iPad is likely to be a minor footnote during the launch presentation on the evening of 23 October. Tomorrow night will be mostly about the iPad mini, the small tablet that may well decimate rivals like the Google Nexus 7 and Kindle Fire HD.

Judging by Apple’s standard release timing, the iPad mini will be available within early November, well in time for the bulk of the pre-Christmas shopping rush. However, there have recently been conflicting rumours on how accessible the iPad mini price will be. The latest suggests it’ll cost $329.

This price is just $30 above the cost of the new iPod touch, which retails for £249 in the UK. Doing a few basic calculations, this means we could be looking at a base cost of £269 or £279 for the iPad mini, over a hundred pounds greater than the cost of the base-model Google Nexus 7.

Is the draw of Apple strong enough to keep its acolytes away from Android alternatives when they could end up paying 50 percent more? What do you think?

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