Claimed prototype of iPad mini 2 goes on sale on eBay with starting bid of $5000

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A claimed prototype of the cellular model of the iPad mini 2 is being auctioned on eBay, with a starting bid of $4,999. No bids had been placed at the time of writing. The reason bids go for so much on these prototypes is that security experts, hackers and jailbreakers like to understand the software that’s loaded on them to get a better idea of what’s going on behind the scenes on iOS devices.

The seller, whose 95.8% feedback rating shows only low-cost sales previously, cites the lack of serial number and FCC markings, together with SwitchBoard software, as evidence that the device is genuine.

For sale is a Apple iPad Mini 2 Cellular Prototype without FCC logos, and is a 64 bit A7/M7 chip/processor. Apple normally does not let these devices out of their possession and you can see from the photos, it is running a version of iOS 7 Apple’s SwitchBoard software and is in the true developer mode. There is no FCC markings on the rear/back of the device or a model/serial number 

There is no information on how the device was acquired. The location of the seller is shown as Charlotte, North Carolina.

That iPhone 6 Prototype we told you about last month is also for sale again on ebay with bids around $6100 currently.

The rest of the Prototype Mini photos can be seen below. Read more

DisplayMate tablet shootout puts Retina iPad Mini in last place, with ‘out-dated technology’

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DisplayMate, a company specializing in scientific display testing and calibration, gave the Retina iPad Mini third place in detailed lab tests of three leading 7-inch tablets, criticising Apple for “really bad planning” for what it considers to be out-dated display technology.

And finally… the iPad mini with Retina Display unfortunately comes in with a distant 3rd place finish behind the innovative displays on the Kindle Fire HDX 7 and new Nexus 7 […]

All of this reliance on IGZO is really bad planning… Right now there is a readily available display technology that has much higher performance than IGZO. It’s Low Temperature Poly Silicon LTPS, and it is used in all of the iPhones and in all of Samsung OLEDs (so it’s available in large quantities). Two innovative tablet manufacturers, Amazon and Google, have significantly leapfrogged Apple by introducing Tablet displays using LTPS (in the Kindle Fire HDX 8.9 and the new Nexus 7), and they are significantly outperforming the IGZO and a-Si displays in the current iPads. Apple is now lagging in displays, an area where it was once the leader…  Read more

The Retina iPad Mini teardown reveals cross between iPad Air & iPhone 5s

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Following close behind its teardown of the iPad Air, iFixit has now taken its toolkit to the Retina iPad Mini. While the company understandably focuses on repairability – that’s how it makes it’s money – we’re betting most people just want to have a peek inside.

Unsurprisingly, the new iPad Mini is essentially a cross between the iPad Air and the iPhone 5s …  Read more

Retina iPad Mini supplies expected to remain tight through the holidays

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If you’re planning to give anyone a Retina iPad Mini as a holiday gift, it might be advisable to buy it sooner rather than later. Retina iPad Mini supplies are expected to remain constrained for the rest of the year, with two analysts both estimating production at around two million units. This is a very small number in what is likely to be a quarter with high demand.

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KGI’s Ming-Chi Kuo and IHS iSuppli’s Rhoda Alexander had both previously said they expected supply to be very tight, but this is the first time we’ve had sight of KGI’s estimates of the numbers.

We maintain our iPad mini R shipments forecast of around 2.2mn units for 4Q13. Considering production yield improvement at the supply chain, we forecast shipments will grow 102% QoQ in 1Q14 to 4.5mn units.

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Report: GlobalFoundries Apple tie-in not as big a deal as it sounds, might be overflow supply line

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Suggestions that Apple is looking to chipmaker GlobalFoundries to reduce its reliance on Samsung chips are rather wide of the mark, according to sources cited by AllThingsD. The rumors followed a story in the Albany Times Union that Apple might be looking to the Malta, New York, chipmaker to make iPhone and iPad chips.

In the most likely scenario, Samsung will still be the primary manufacturer of Apple’s chips for the iPhone and iPad, they said, continuing the role it has played since the earliest days of the iPhone: Building the chips that Apple designs under contract […]

Samsung will use GlobalFoundries for what is known as “flex capacity.” This is a long-standing industry practice under which a chip manufacturer pays to occasionally use another company’s factories when demand on their own factory is running higher than they would like, and they need a little help …  Read more

Retina iPad mini could be the new gold iPhone 5s, with ‘ridiculously tight’ supplies

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A second analyst has warned that supplies of the Retina iPad mini are likely to be “ridiculously tight”, after KGI Securities analyst Ming-Chi Kuo previously predicted they would be “highly constrained.” The comment comes from Rhoda Alexander, director of tablet research at IHS electronis and media, quoted in the Telegraph.

Apple could face supply issues for the iPad mini 2 with Retina, as its supply is one third the size of its shipments from this time last year, an analyst said.

Rhoda Alexander, director of tablet research at IHS electronis and media, said: “The supply of the Retina Mini is going to be ridiculously tight in the fourth quarter …  Read more

Apple Store goes down for updates in run-up to launch event (Update: iWork on iCloud goes down as well)

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As always in the run up to a launch event, the Apple Store has been taken offline for updates ahead of today’s iPad-focused event. Apple has also taken down iWork for iCloud, promising that it will be back in a few hours with “great new features.”

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Additionally, Apple has updated its homepage with a promo for the event …  Read more

Apple will be live-streaming today’s launch event on web & Apple TV

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Apple will be live streaming today’s launch event, first revealed by the Apple Events channel returning to Apple TV, the icon displaying the theme for the event and a message saying “tune in at 10 am for the live stream.”

The event will also be streamed on the web when it begins at 10am Pacific/1pm Eastern. As usual, live streaming requires Safari 4 or later on OS X v10.6 or later; Safari on iOS 4.2 or later. Streaming via Apple TV requires second- or third-generation Apple TV with software 5.0.2 or later.

Details below of what we’re expecting to see …  Read more

Apple announces October 22nd iPad event: ‘We still have a lot to cover’

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Apple has announced that it will be holding its next media event on October 22nd, which is in line with expectations. The event will take place at 10 AM Pacific/1 PM Eastern Time at Yerba Buena Center for the Arts in San Francisco, California.

The event will likely showcase new versions of the iPad, including a redesigned full-sized model that looks like a larger iPad mini and a new iPad mini that boasts a Retina display.

Also in Apple’s pipeline are new iWork suites, a new version of the Apple TV, new MacBook Pros with faster chipsets, OS X Mavericks, and the new Mac Pro. It’s unclear which of the aforementioned products will actually get stage time this time around, but the new Mac Pro, MacBook Pros, and OS X Mavericks are the most likely to appear in addition to the tablets…

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Report claims iPad 5 & Retina iPad mini will sport 8MP rear cameras w/ larger aperture

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With Apple’s rumored next-generation iPads expected to be launching as early as this month, often reliable KGI analyst Ming-Chi Kuo is sharing some new details on the expected iPad 5 and second generation iPad mini. Kuo is still expecting both products to launch later this year sometime in 4Q13, but in his latest report claims that Apple is prepping a camera upgrade for the new iPads that would include a bump up from the current 5 megapixel iSight camera to 8 megapixels along with other improvements:

Apple could upgrade the camera as a selling point for the new iPad in a bid to increase competitiveness.

We expect the upgrade will include 8MP rear camera, up from 5MP, and larger aperture. Lens module ASP will rise 10-20% on this optics spec upgrade.

As a reminder, the new iPhone 5s includes a new five-element lens designed by Apple that also includes a larger a F2.2 aperture with an 8 megapixel sensor. The device also brings a sensor with a 15 percent larger active area, auto stabilization, and bigger 1.5 micron pixels.

That would indeed be a nice camera to put on iPads. Read more

Reuters: Retina iPad mini supplies will be constrained, full production now pushed into 2014

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Reuters is reporting that problems with the rumored retina display for the iPad Mini 2 mean that it will be available only in limited quantities when it launches this year, with full-scale production pushed into 2014.

Apple Inc will be unable to widely roll out a new version of the iPad Mini with a high-resolution “retina” display this month, people who work in the company’s supply chain said […]

Given the time required to ramp up screen production, a retina display-equipped iPad Mini would not be available in large volumes until early next year, the sources said.

The delays are said to be due to the display suppliers – believed to be Samsung, LG and Sharp – having difficulties meeting the strict power-saving specifications laid down by Apple …  Read more

Chinese site shows two photos of claimed gold iPad Mini 2 with Touch ID

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Chinese site DoNews has posted two photos of what it claims is a champagne-colored iPad Mini 2 with Touch ID fingerprint sensor.

Concept photos and outright hoaxes are commonplace in the run-up to an anticipated product launch (we debunked one of these just yesterday), so there is no telling whether or not these are the real deal, but it’s obviously logical to expect Apple to release both the iPad 5 and iPad Mini 2 in the same colour schemes as the iPhone 5s. It’s also pretty likely that both will be fitted with the Touch ID fingerprint sensor (shown below the fold), though we have heard some whispers that it doesn’t …  Read more