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When Apple first introduced the iPad Mini last year there was some surprise it didn’t have a Retina Display, and yet it still managed to cost more than competing tablets that had higher resolution screens. Even so, the iPad Mini seems to be selling well and even cutting into sales of the iPad in some markets.
But what about the second generation iPad Mini we expect to arrive this year? According to the supply chain, Apple is already planning to add a Retina Display to the next Mini, and with it set the bar much higher for what constitutes a high resolution 7-inch tablet.
The 2nd gen iPad Mini is expected to include a 7.9-inch panel with a resolution of 2048 x 1536 supplied by AU Optronics. That’s 324ppi. By comparison, the 7-inch Kindle Fire HD and Nexus 7 only manage 216ppi. The 4th gen iPad is 264ppi, and the iPhone 5 manages to just beat it with 326ppi, albeit it on a much smaller display.
Such a high resolution display on the smaller iPad will certainly make it stand out from the competition. However, it could also see Apple lose even more sales from its larger iPad . But then, we’re probably going to see a 5th generation iPad appearing later this year, too.
A second generation iPad Mini will also require higher performance components in order to drive that new display. It will be interesting to see if Apple can retain the price point and the high level of profit it so desires while managing to deliver both.