While it is likely that Retina on iPad Mini 2 will come out this year, Google will beat out Apple in the tablet high resolution race with the Nexus 7 possibly flashing denser screen pixels a bit earlier, a new report said.
The 7-inch Google tablet will be bumped up to 323ppi from last year's 216ppi, according to research firm Display Search, and the likelihood is consumers will get a hold of the tablet within Q2 2013.
The projection is based on estimates furnished by various display panel manufacturers in Asia, Display Search analyst Paul Semenza told CNET in a report.
The refreshed Nexus 7 will sport a 1920 x 1200 HD resolution, considerably boosting what Google and Asus had served in the popular tablet.
However, the longer wait for an iPad Mini 2 with Retina will lead to crisper screen rendering that outpace its former resolution of 1024 x 768, which was inferior to the first Nexus 7's 1280 x 800.
By the time the Mini 2 gets out this year, its display prowess will be upgraded to 2048 x 1536, making the Apple tablet the best in the 7-inch plus class in terms of display screen superiority, Mr Semenza said.
"We're seeing potential in the third quarter of panel production for a higher-resolution iPad Mini," the analyst said, adding that the small Apple tablet will be commercially available by "third quarter or fourth quarter."
The delay, Mr Semenza said, is due to the difficulties encountered by the display component suppliers contracted by Apple for the iPad Mini 2 project.
It was a long puzzle to solve for the contractors, which were made to figure out how to fit in the Retina panel to the mere 7.9-inch chassis of the Mini 2. Note that Retina was originally designed for the 9.7-inch iPad.
And after the long wait is over, consumers can expect the Mini 2's pixel density to jump from 163ppi to 324ppi, Mr Semenza said.
The strongest candidate to provide Retina-compatible components for the iPad Mini 2 is LG Display, the report said, though Apple appears bent to tap other major players to keep up with the expected demand surge for the small tablet once it is released.