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iPad 4 rumor rollup for the week ending April 16

When it comes to iPads, smaller is better, and so is older for now

By , Network World
April 17, 2012 12:50 PM ET

With the New Unnumbered iPad or NUiP just weeks old, rumors of the Next New iPad or NNiP are still thin on the ground. But the iOSphere, like nature, abhors a vacuum.

This week, more speculation on a smaller iPad, and why Luddites with iPad 1 are still holding out for iPad 4.

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"So, is a miniaturized iPad mini just a pipe dream or a valid proposition? Hard to tell. What we do know is that Apple likes to keep things simple." 
    -- Christian Zibreg, iDownloadBlog.com, eschewing the chance to clarify whether the miniaturized mini (or mini mini) is a simple pipe dream or a simple valid proposition

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iPad 4 will be bigger than iPhone 4S but smaller than iPad 3

You just can't keep a bad rumor down. In 2011, it was repeatedly rumored that either iPad 3 would have a smaller-than-9.7-inch screen or that Apple would release a second iPad with a smaller screen. That didn't happen, so one can start rumoring about it all over again.

QUIZ: Do you know the new iPad?

The Wall Street Journal reported in February that "Apple Inc. is working with component suppliers in Asia to test a new tablet computer with a smaller screen, people familiar with the situation said, as it looks to broaden its product pipeline amid intensifying competition and maintain its dominant market share."

And now new rumors swirl. "Rumors of an iPad Mini Swirl in China," according to the headline at Gawker's video game website, Kotaku.com, which picked up a Chinese language post from a mainland site, NetEase. Although a Google translation of the original indicates that NetEase picked up the rumor from "Taiwan media reports."

"The Chinese rumor mill has hit full blast today claiming to have details about the imminent release of an iPad mini," the anonymous Kotaku post announced.

Somehow no one seems to have noticed that NetEase avoided mentioning the most important detail of all: namely the actual screen size of the Next New iPad (or NNiP).

Rollup took the Chinese text from the original NetEase post and ran it through Google Translate. As usual, GT leaves a lot of room for interpretation, such as this opening: "Apple intends to launch the iPad Mini news rumored long-standing, according to Taiwan media reports, the recent market came iPad Mini supply chain has been finalized, with the exception of David overseas, and the master also won the assembly order."

Just so, grasshopper.

Anyway, the iOSsphere is pretty sure what this means. "NetEase claimed that the device will be released around the third quarter of this year to 'counter attack' the upcoming Windows tablets," Kotaku reported breathlessly. Nothing like a counter-attack or even an attack to get the iOSphere's blood racing. "The report further claims that the devices will cost anywhere from US$249 to $299 and that there will be an initial 6 million units ready for launch."

"Apple is allegedly looking to launch a 7.85-inch iPad model sometime in the third quarter of this year," reveals Christian Zibreg, posting at iDownload Blog, and apparently pulling that screen size out of thin air.

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