The number of consumers wanting to own the first-gen iPad Mini is on the decline, an alarming trend that could prod Apple to speed up the planned release date of the iPad Mini 2 with Retina display.
According to Apple Insider, Apple supply chain player Cirrus Logic has earlier reported a softening demand for the small iOS tablet that its maker said is already owned by some 30 million people around the world.
In a separate report, Bloomberg pointed to the downgraded revenue guidance issued recently by Apple contractor Pegatron. The iPad Mini maker has cited the retreating demands for the iPad Mini as the main cause of its projected 30 per cent drop in revenue for the June quarter.
The same goes for LG Display, which has replaced Samsung as the main provider for the display components used both in the 7.9-inch iPad Mini and the 9.7-inch iPad.
These sobering indicators, however, could prompt Apple to fast-track the production of its 2013 iPad lineup, composed by the redesigned and more compact iPad 5 and the iPad Mini 2 that analysts said will finally be given the Retina display.
In order to arrest the downward spiral of the industry-leading iPads, Apple would do well to advance their release dates, analysts said. Earlier reports have suggested that the two iOS slates will get their scheduled refresh between late September and early October.
In the event that production activities for the two tablets are ramped up, the earliest could come between July and August. However, Apple's manufacturing division could likely be stretched thin by the adjustments in light of recent reports that the tech giant has given the go signal to start the production of iPhone 5S and its low-cost edition.
At any rate, the iPad Mini 2 set for release this year is expected to introduce Retina display component, meaning the popular small will see a significant boost in screen resolution, doubling its current specs of 1024 x 768 with a pixel density of 162ppi.
Some analysts, however, are convinced that the Mini 2 will be quickly followed by a more powerful iPad Mini 2, which apart from Retina is seen to receive faster processing chip and other hardware bump ups.
And it is almost certain that the two upcoming Minis will get the iOS 7, which reports said will debut via the Worldwide Developers Conference on June with new and slimmer interface but with more powerful features.