The new and much-anticipated iPad Mini might only be released in October and may not share the launch date with the next generation and even more-anticipated iPhone 5.
It is widely expected that Apple will launch the next generation iPhone on September12.
Although initial reports had claimed that the 7-inch iPad Mini, would be released ahead of the new iPhone, tech blog AllThingsD now says the devices will be launched separately.
Apple has been under immense pressure to gain control of the existing market for smaller-sized tablets, dominated by Samsung and increasing competition from Kindle and Google’s Nexus 7.
Although it is widely believed that Apple co-founder Steve Jobs was not in favour of a smaller sized tablet, an internal Apple email sent in January 2011, that was presented during the trial between Apple and Samsung at a US court clearly pointed out that Apple was working on a smaller iPad.
In the email, Vice-President Eddy Cue had urged then-chief operating officer Tim Cook to build a 7-inch tablet.
Meanwhile, according to a CLSA Asia Pacific Markets, a Hong Kong-based brokerage, the market for 7-inch tablets is only going to grow further.
“We expect 7-inch tablets to become a large product segment as their utility/cost ratio becomes very attractive at US$250 to US$300,” Nicolas Baratte, head of technology research at CLSA said in a research note.
According to him the tablet market will reach 108 million units in 2012 and148 million units in 2013, with Apple holding 63 per cent and 50 per cent market shares, respectively.
Apple will continue to dominate the 10-inch tablet market with an 81-per cent market share in 2012 and 72 per cent in 2013.