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Apple iPad 3 Mini: an Apple rival to the Amazon Kindle Fire?

It seems that all we’re able to talk about in the world of technology at the moment is Apple and its next big device – the iPad 3.

As the launch date gets ever closer (there’s been no official date given, but you’ve got to assume we are getting closer to it with each passing day), more and more details are coming out.

All speculation of course, but some pretty convincing pictures of the next-gen tablet’s body have spurred the rumour mill on even more.

The debate over their authenticity will rage on until the iPad 3 is released, in what looks like being sometime in March.

Apple iPad 3 Mini?

But a far more interesting rumour has been doing the rounds for a while now is that of a seven-inch iPad making an appearance this year.

This rumour first started doing the rounds last year, but has been largely ignored as we approach the iPad 3’s launch.

But new weight has been lent to the claims, and it looks like we’ll see Apple enter the seven-inch market in the latter stages of 2012.

Dubbed the iPad 3 Mini, the device would be the first time Apple has dropped its display size for an iPad. The original iPad and the current model both have 9.7 inch displays, with 1024 x 768 resolutions.

Challenge to Amazon Kindle Fire?

But is a smaller iPad really a good idea for Apple? And will it be able to compete against the successful Kindle Fire?

Steve Jobs didn’t think it was a good idea, saying that a small version is not able to express the software aptly. A slightly odd stance, given the success of the software on the (even smaller) iPhone.

There have also been suggestions that there would be a case-keyboard for the iPad 3 Mini, as Apple targets the student market with ebooks and textbooks.

But the success of the Kindle Fire is down in no small part to its price, so Apple would have to seriously cut the price of a Mini to compete.

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