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No 7-inch Apple iPad for 2012 says analyst

Apple iPad 7 InchRumors that Apple will launch a 7-inch version of their iPad tablet have been circulating ever since the very first model came out a couple of years ago. They’ve recently resurfaced too, suggesting that a 7-inch version could be unveiled alongside the iPad 3 in 2012.

This resurgence is almost certainly related to the success of the Amazon Fire, which boasts a 7-inch screen with a 600 x 1024 pixel resolution that has been described as “just right.”  However the late Steve Jobs didn’t agree, famously denouncing tablets of that size as “dead on arrival”.

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Now, an analyst from Wedge Partners has joined in the discussion, telling not to expect an iPad 7-inch in 2012. He adds that the company has been testing prototypes for some time, but are not expected to release them, at least certainly not next year.

A smaller tablet is associated by many with a lower price point, however Apple could follow the same strategy it has employed with the iPhone 4 and iPhone 4S to cover this sector of the market.

The dual-core iPad 2 is hardly a creaky old beast and easily keeps up with a high percentage of newly released tablets, making it sensible to keep it in production and drop the price accordingly when the iPad 3 launches. Like the iPhone 4 it’ll sit alongside its sparkly new brother quite happily. The analyst agrees, saying they see Apple offering a single 16GB iPad 2 model at either $349 or $399.

Recent speculation places the iPad 3 for launch around February to March 2012.

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