There is a lot of speculation about whether Apple will be releasing a mini iPad. At this point, it really is not logical for them to make such a product. They may be able to sell more if they had a cheaper iPad product on the market, however whether the margin of profit would be worth it for Apple to do so is questionable.
Mashable.com has said that in order to compete in the tablet market, Apple has to produce a 7” iPad before the end of the year. I just don’t think this is true. In terms of tablet operating systems, there are two competitors to watch in the race against Apple: Microsoft Windows tablets and Android tablets. Android tablets are far less popular than Android phones. Many Android phone users prefer to have iPads, and we have already discussed the Microsoft Surface tablet (to be released in October) versus the iPad [article: “The New Microsoft Surface Tablet goes Toe-to-Toe with the iPad”]. There is no competition to someone who wants an iPad. The sales now show that the iPad will continue to be successful just as they are.
The iPad is the dominant tablet on the market currently, and it doesn’t look like that is going to change. IF Apple were to offer an alternative to the current model iPad, it would make more sense to wait until early Spring. The new iPod and iPhone releases are coming up in the Fall, and the regular iPad releases are usually in March.