Tablet talk intensifies: Apple and RIM planning new devices

7.85-inch iPad mini concept by John Anastasiadis of iMore

iPad Mini

Steve Jobs rubbished the idea of smaller tablets back in 2010, calling them “dead on arrival”. Too small for a decent user experience, he said.

But in recent months, the chatter surrounding the possibility of Apple releasing an iPad Mini has increased markedly, with many observers now believing it a real possibility. Amazon and Google will not be pleased.

The latest report pointing toward the launch of a smaller version of the massively popular iPad comes from Bloomberg. It said on Tuesday that according to “two people with knowledge of the plans,” the device will have a display of between seven and eight inches, a little smaller than the iPad’s current 9.7-inch screen. However, the tablet won’t have Apple’s Retina display, but instead go with the pre-new-iPad resolution of 1024×768 pixels. According to Bloomberg’s source, Apple may unveil the device in October.

Since Apple launched the iPad in 2010, no other maker has been able to come close in terms of sales figures. If the company prices the iPad Mini competitively (OK, if they launch one), it’ll cause a real headache – no, worse, a head-thumping skull-bashing migraine – for Amazon and Google. Their 7-inch Kindle Fire and Nexus 7 devices, both priced at $199, are positioned at the low end of the tablet market – precisely where the rumored iPad Mini is heading. Apple’s current 9.7-inch iPad costs between $499 and $829, depending upon its memory capacity and wireless capabilities. What would you think for an iPad Mini – around $249?

Shaw Wu, an analyst at Sterne Agee & Leach, underlined the trouble it could cause other tablet makers, telling Bloomberg that any such creation by the Cupertino company would be “the competitors’ worst nightmare.”

And if anyone had any doubt about whether there’d be a market for a smaller iPad, cast your mind back to May where a survey of over 2,500 online shoppers in the US found that 52 percent said they’d be interested in a 7-inch iPad priced at $250.

Blackforest

No, RIM isn’t about to branch out into selling rich, heavy cakes in order to save the company from meltdown (though it might be worth a try) – it’s actually the name (or at least, the codename) of a new tablet it’s expected to release in the third quarter of 2013.

The BlackBerryOS fan site claims to have come into possession of what it believes is a BlackBerry 10 roadmap for next year, part of which shows the scheduling of the Blackforest tablet.

tablet talk intensifies apple and rim planning new devices blackforestThe device is thought to have a 10-inch screen, but little more is known at the current time. However, the image of the tablet on the roadmap has “128” printed beneath it, with BlackBerryOS suggesting it could indicate it’ll be equipped with a whopping 128GB of memory.

But with the poor sales of its smaller PlayBook tablet, many will wonder at the wisdom of bringing out a larger tablet which will find itself competing with Apple’s iPad as well as Microsoft’s forthcoming Surface offerings.

RIM’s problems have been well documented in recent months, the most recent disappointment being the delay of its next-generation BlackBerry 10 OS until next year. But it’s the success of these BlackBerry 10 devices, which will include several handsets, that will determine if RIM sinks or swims.

Smart Home

Amazon’s hardware event is today. Here’s what we think they’ll announce

Amazon's hardware announcement likely means a whole bunch of new Amazon Alexa gadgets. From a microwave to stereo equipment, here are our guesses on which devices we'll see, which could total as many as eight.
Computing

AT&T’s new 5G network could adopt tiered billing, including a gaming plan

AT&T may be leveraging its 5G's fast speeds and low latency in order to create a special plan for gamers. AT&T didn't disclose what the 5G gaming plan will cost, but gamers could be free from Wi-Fi in the future.
Mobile

Code found in iOS 12.1 beta suggests we will see a new iPad this fall

The new iPhone XS, iPhone XR, and Apple Watch aren't the last devices we'll see from Apple in 2018. There are plenty of rumors about a new iPad coming this year too, and it may share some design similarities with the new phones.
Deals

The best laptop deals for September 2018

Whether you're getting ready for a new school year, shopping for a special student, or just need a new computer, we've got you covered: These are the best laptop deals going, from discounted MacBooks to an on-the-go gaming PC.
Mobile

Not sure about updating to iOS 12? Here are five reasons why you should

If you’re on the fence about whether to install iOS 12 or not, allow us to explain why the update is worthwhile. Here are five of our favorite features from Apple’s mobile platform.
Mobile

Google Maps is available on Apple CarPlay with iOS 12

After months of betas, the final version of iOS 12 is here to download. The new OS comes along with tons of new capabilities from grouped notifications to Siri Shortcuts, here are all the features you'll find in iOS 12.
Mobile

Updating to Apple’s iOS 12 will make your iPhone a whole lot smarter

iOS 12, the latest version of Apple’s iOS, is officially here. We took it for a spin to check out its new noteworthy features, and if it truly changes our smartphone habits for the better.
Mobile

Find out how Apple's new iPhones measure up to the most bezel-less designs

As the smartphone industry marches toward a bezel-less future, we compare the shrinking bezels on the latest and greatest devices. Find out which manufacturers have the smallest bezels on their smartphone as we measure them side by side.
Mobile

iOS 12's Siri Shortcuts help Apple close the digital assistant gap

Siri may be lagging behind the competition, but Apple is finally supercharging the digital assistant with Siri Shortcuts, which allows you to perform tasks quickly and easily. Here's how to use iOS 12's new Siri Shortcuts app.
Mobile

Apple iPhone XS vs. Samsung Galaxy S9: 2018’s biggest flagships clash

The iPhone XS has been revealed, and it's one of the best phones of the year. But even though it's Apple's latest and greatest, it's up against a lot of competition. Is the iPhone XS better than the Samsung Galaxy S9?
Mobile

The best weather apps for the iPhone

Don't rely solely on your local meteorologist to stay up to date on the weather. Take matters into your own hands with one of these weather apps, each of which brings something unique to the table.
Mobile

Be an online phantom and web surf safely with Ghostery’s mobile browser

Keeping your private information to yourself has become progressively harder in the internet age. If you're worried about your personal information, check out the new version of the Ghostery browser for iOS and Android.
Wearables

Fitbit Versa vs. Apple Watch Series 4: Which wearable is the best?

Smartwatches are the health-conscious wearables that everyone wants. We wanted to see how the brand-new Apple Watch Series 4 matches up with the beloved Fitbit Versa, so we compared them in various categories to help you choose.
Deals

Cyber Monday 2018: When it takes place and where to find the best deals

Cyber Monday is still a ways off, but it's never too early to start planning ahead. With so many different deals to choose from during one of the biggest shopping holidays of the year, going in with a little know-how makes all the…