ipad-mini 5Now that Apple has sent out invites for an event on Tuesday, Oct. 23, the rumors have begun to fly about the release of the rumored iPad Mini. It would make sense for the iPad Mini to be released now, right when the holiday shopping season is starting. It would also be competing with the Microsoft Surface tablet and, possibly, a new Google Nexus, setting up what should be an epic showdown.

If the rumors of its existence are true, the iPad Mini release date is expected to be Nov. 2, ten days after the Oct. 23 event (and a Friday to boot).

What are the Apple iPad Mini’s Specifications?

This new iPad would likely have a 7.8-inch display, and would have the same resolution as the current iPad 2. One wonders what other features this tablet would have, ranging from a possible camera to the incorporation of upgrades that have been seen in the recent iPod and iPhone incarnations.

The iPad Mini is also expected to be a very affordable option for consumers, starting somewhere around $249. While other tablets are still a cheaper option, this is a far cry from the iPad Mini’s more expensive predecessors.

Why Would You Need a Smaller iPad?

ipad invite for ipad miniThis is the biggest question surrounding the impending announcement of a 2012 iPad Mini. Why exactly is Apple developing a smaller tablet? The obvious answer, of course, is to make more money, but there has been a commitment from Apple to make iPads more accessible to children. A smaller iPad could end up being a much more useful tool in classrooms across the country.

For the rest of us, though, a smaller iPad might simply be more of a convenience. It never hurts to have options, and many consumers will be enticed by the new features an iPad Mini might offer.

Will you be buying the Apple iPad Mini? If you already have an iPad, will you be exchanging it for the new mini version?

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