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The iPad mini with Retina display went on sale through the Apple Online Store early Tuesday morning in an uncharacteristically soft launch. The news was prefaced by an internal memo that leaked from Apple’s GSX tool. The device is available in the United States, Australia, China (no LTE models yet), Hong Kong, Japan, New Zealand, and Singapore.

The release comes at an unexpected time. Apple didn’t officially announce the release date ahead of time, saying only that the device would be available sometime this month. In fact, aside from a memo that was released to employees only hours before the tablet went live on the Apple Online Store, there was no indication that it would be released this week at all.

Availability dates for other iPad models, such as the iPad Air that went on sale earlier this month, have usually been announced in advance to give retailers and customers time to plan for the release.

The iPad mini with Retina display features all of the same internal components as the full-sized iPad Air, including Apple’s new A7 chip, M7 motion co-processor for improved motion data handling and battery life, a 1.2 MP front-facing camera, 5 MP rear camera, and 2048-by-1536 Retina display. The only difference between the two is the size of the tablet itself—the iPad Air has a 9.7-inch screen while the iPad mini with Retina display has a 7.9-inch screen.

The Retina iPad mini starts at $399 for the 16 GB Wi-Fi model and $529 for the LTE version.

Apple has also updated the design of its store for holiday shoppers, including several exclusive offers. These offers include the Anki Drive Starter Kit for $199.95, Infomotion 94Fifty Smart Sensor basketball for $299.95, and the Automatic smart driving sensor for $99.95. The updated store also includes a list of top gifts for holiday shoppers.

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29 Responses to “Apple Store comes back online with Retina iPad mini, exclusive holiday offers”

  1. cismen says:

    It’s also available in Germany.

  2. I just bought one from the Swedish store.

  3. It’s live in Switzerland. And I guess several other European countries

  4. Czech store also updated with retina iPad mini

  5. Sil says:

    Available in the Dutch Apple online store too.

  6. Daniel Dosen says:

    Ordered in Seattle. I wonder when they’ll show up in stores…

  7. just bought iPad mini retina 64gb wifi, no pickup avail on west side LA, express 2-3 day shipping avail for extra 10 bucks.

  8. Also available in the Canadian store

  9. is also available in Germany – just bought one – 5 – 10 days

  10. Also available in Germany (same shipping days as US)

  11. longtu9 says:

    I just bought one from the Swedish store.
    Lear more

  12. Martin Read says:

    UK store accepting orders – thanks for the tip-off.

  13. Just ordered one in the UK, 1-3 business days! Woohoo!

  14. Also available in Hungary, with 5-10 days delivery

  15. anyone know if it’s going to be for sale in stores (not in store pickup). I called the 5th avenue store in NYC and they said the news is new to them and to call back later when they know more.

  16. I visited the Apple site at the right time by pure luck, thank god as I was banking on this as a Christmas present for a very important person :) (not me!)

  17. ezybzy says:

    Also available in Thailand, sans LTE models.

  18. It’s also available in austria! 5 – 10 shipping days

  19. ellzworth says:

    Spent a good 15 minutes trying to decide if I wanted the 32gig Wifi or Cellular version. Went for the cellular for $140 more after taxes and what-not. I’m also on the west side of the US in LA.

  20. gminato says:

    Just ordered a 16GB WiFi model from Australian Online Store, 1-3 days to deliver. Oh, to be 9 years old on getting on of these for you birthday!

  21. kpom1 says:

    11/12/13! It makes sense. Anyway, I went ahead and ordered a 32GB T-Mobile model. It is supposed to ship in 5-10 business days, arriving between November 26th and December 4th. I think in stores it might be as hard to come by as the iPhone 5s was the first month.

    • ellzworth says:

      Agreed but unfortunately, no one in cyberspace had access to a test model/version of the Mini Retina. That means it’s either going to blow billy-goat or be one of the most amazing gadgets in Apple History and no one knows it yet.