This probably isn’t the first time you’ve read about this rumor somewhere on the Internet, but it’s back again. Analyst Glen Yeung of Citigroup is suggesting that Apple is under pressure right now to produce a cheaper iPad mini and sell it at around $200.
He blames this primarily on two factors. The first is Apple’s falling stock price, which reached its peak last year but since then has yet to even come close to it again. The second is market share. Apple currently has a wide lead on tablet market share against Android, but as more Android tablets are produced and sold, the lead will inevitably begin to narrow.
Yeung says Apple will have no other choice but to release a cheap iPad mini by the end of the year to stay competitive. He believes the cheaper tablet will have a “similar screen resolution with a cheaper mechanical design” and will be “priced at around US$200-250, to defend its market share.”
Is this a likely scenario? In my view, probably not. While Apple does have good profit margins on the iPad mini compared to other vendors, when you compare the profit margins to Apple’s other products, they’re small. Not only has Apple never been willing to make a “cheap” device, but the company is very well known for prioritizing profits over market share. That’s already very clear with the Mac and iPhone.
Perhaps Apple should address the falling stock price, but the likelihood of it doing so by creating a cheap iPad mini is slim.