Apple Announces iPad mini

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Apple Announces iPad mini

Update: As expected, Apple unveiled a smaller version of the iPad today that will, in fact, be called the “iPad mini.” The mini’s screen measures 7.9 inches diagonally and has a surface area of 29.6 inches. It is 7.2 mm thin, or “as thin as a pencil,” and .68 pounds, or “as light as a pad of paper.” The presentation revolved around the fact that the iPad mini is small enough to hold in one hand, while still retaining the functionality of the full-size models.

Inside, the mini contains a dual-core A5 chip. There is a frontside HD camera for Face Time, as well as a five megapixel backside camera. Battery life is 10 hours. It also features a Lightning connector, making it compatible with the latest iPod touches, the iPhone 5 and the fourth generation iPad, which was also announced.

The 16 GB iPad mini will start at $329, making it the cheapest iPad yet. A 32 GB version will go for $429, and the largest 64 GB size is priced at $529. You can pre-order the mini beginning this Friday, Oct. 26, with the WiFi versions shipping on Nov. 2. Cellular versions will ship two weeks later.

Barely a month after announcing the iPhone 5, Apple is expected to unveil the iPad Mini today at 1:00 p.m. EDT. The announcement can be viewed on Apple TV or online here.

As usual, Apple has held details of the new product close to the vest, but many expect the Mini to have a smaller 7.85-inch screen and a 1024×768 pixel display. A version with a Retina display could be available for a higher price. A nano-SIM card slot for wireless network support and anodized aluminum casing are also expected.

The iPad Mini is expected to sell for less than regular-sized iPads, but estimates of a specific price have fluctuated and will vary depending on factors such as storage size, Internet capabilities and display type.

The device’s name has also been a topic of discussion. While it has been commonly referred to as the iPad Mini, iPad Light and iPad Air are also possibilities.

Along with the announcement of the iPad Mini (or whatever it’s going to be called), Apple also is expected to announce a number of new computers, including a new MacBook with Retina display.