by Joe White
October 31, 2013
One product listing for the iPad mini with Retina display indicates that the anticipated tablet, which Apple notes will be available "later in November," is actually set to launch in Apple Retail Stores, the Apple Online Store, carrier stores, and with U.S. retailers on Nov. 21. Though the iPad Air, which is reportedly in "plentiful" supply, will launch across the world tomorrow, Nov. 1, the same cannot be said of the 9.7-inch tablet's 7.9-inch sibling. Instead, Apple has remained quiet on when exactly the second-generation iPad mini will launch, with chief executive officer Tim Cook noting recently that the Cupertino, Calif. company could be unable to meet demand for the product. Given that the holiday season is fast approaching, this doesn't bode well for gift-buyers looking to pick up an iPad mini with Retina display. Now, a Target product listing for the new iPad mini indicates that Nov. 21 could be the day Apple's second-generation tablet launches - at least in the United States. The page, included below, outlines the features of the iPad mini with Retina display, and includes one important (and unintentional) addition: a Nov. 21 release date. As such, the above release date indicates that the new iPad mini would be available in time for Black Friday, which may seem to be a logical move for Apple to make. Of course, even if Apple does release its iPad mini with Retina display on Nov. 21, this doesn't guarantee that many customers - even those planning on queuing up during the cold, winter night before - will get their paws on the new 7.9-inch tablet. So far, countless reports have claimed that the smaller Retina displays required by the iPad mini are causing major delays in the production cycle. One such report came recently from the hit-and-miss publication DigiTimes, which explains:
The availability of the iPad mini with Retina display may not be enough to meet market demand because Sharp’s supply of 7.9-inch Retina display panels based on its Oxide TFT process is seeing low yield rates, according to sources with Taiwan’s supply chain. LG Display (LGD) is another supplier 7.9-inch Retina panels, the sources noted. LGD uses a-Si process and accounts for about 60% of the panels supplied for use in Apple’s iPad mini with Retina display, with Sharp accounting for 40%, the sources said.As iDownloadBlog rightly notes, the above, long-rumored supply concerns for the iPad mini with Retina display mean that taking on Black Friday's typically huge demand would be a big ask. This, combined with the fact that Apple usually launches new products on Fridays, leads the website to argue that the Nov. 21 launch date could be off. Though we'll know nothing for sure until Apple provides an official announcement. As usual, we'll keep you updated with further information as we receive it. In the meantime, see: Infinity Blade III Gets Its First Content Update: Soul Hunter Quest Available Now, "Plentiful" Stocks Of iPad Air Begin Arriving In Apple Stores Ahead Of Nov. 1 Launch, and Today's Best Apps: Fantastical 2, RGB Dots And Freeze It.