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iPad Mini 2 Q4 2013 Release Date Almost Certain as Apple Mulls 2014 Rollout of Budget iMac & iPad Mini 3 – Analyst

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By Erik Pineda | October 14, 2013 12:45 PM EST

Doubts remain hovering over the rumoured iPad Mini 2 release date in the final months of 2013 but a new report seems to confirm that the second-gen small iOS 7 slate is coming out as scheduled.

Ming-chi Kuo of KGI Securities never mentioned any specifics on when the Mini 2 is getting unleashed though other analysts have been predicting that the original Mini successor is making its way to the market anytime between November and December this year.

Its is widely expected that the first Mini and the trimmed down iPad 5 are set for a grand debut in Oct 22, with the release date to follow 10 days after or Nov 1 at the earliest.

However, Mr Kuo is signalling that the Mini 2, said to tote a high-resolution Retina display panel, is a done deal as his latest note points to the 2014 production of the iPad Mini 3, according to Apple Insider.

This third iteration, the KGI analyst said, will pretty much reflect what the Mini 2 will strut once it hits centre-stage. The best bet would be a 2048 x 1536 screen resolution beamed out via its 7.9-inch viewer, an A7 processing chip and a higher RAM numbers from the 512MB that was deployed in the first edition.

Of course, iOS 7 will be part of the package though some quarters are suggesting that the platform to power the compact tablet could be iOS 8, that is if Apple would push out the device by the second half of 2014.

Mr Kuo expresses confidence that the Mini, which apparently is very different from the cheaper iPad Mini build he had earlier forecasted, should be out by next year, adding that Apple is also working on another product that is set to lure price-sensitive shoppers.

The tech giant is gunning to increase its overall PC shipment by adding a budget iMac to its 2014 line up, the analyst said.

Following the alarming decline in PC ship outs that the company posted in Q3 2013, Apple sets its eye on up to 20 per cent jump in 2014, which it hopes to achieve by introducing an iMac build that is priced below $1300.

The latest 21.5-inch iMac that was unveiled in September 2013 retails at the same starting price, which for most PC users is too expensive.

So to make the desktop OS-powered computer more attractive, Apple could be looking on a sticker price that is below the $1000 mark with possible specs downgrade to pave the way for the so-called budget iMac.

It remains unclear if the unit will be part of the Intel Haswell CPU class, which Apple has introduced both on its laptop and desktop build starting this year, as affordability and moderate capabilities seem to be the core emphasis of the budget iMac line up.

But what should be clear at the moment is the Retina-flavoured iPad Mini 2 release date, which the world should finally see between late October and early November 2013, that is if Apple's rumoured production problems have been dealt with.

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