Apple’s iPad Mini is now a reality

Rumors about Apple’s iPad mini have been swirling around the Internet ether for months now. Today the 7.9-inch tablet – with a 1,024 x 768 display – became official.

The new tablet measures 7.2mm thick, weighs in at .68 pounds – and is 23 percent thinner and 53 percent lighter than the third generation iPad.

The iPad mini also boasts FaceTime HD and iSight cameras, ultrafast wireless performance and 10 hours of battery life. 

“iPad mini is every inch an iPad. With its gorgeous 7.9-inch display, iPad mini features the same number of pixels as the original iPad and iPad 2, so you can run more than 275,000 apps designed specifically for iPad,” said Apple exec Philip Schiller. “iPad mini is as thin as a pencil and as light as a pad of paper, yet packs a fast A5 chip, FaceTime HD and 5 megapixel iSight cameras and ultrafast wireless―all while delivering up to 10 hours of battery life.”

According to Schiller, the 7.9-inch Multi-Touch display delivers the same iPad experience users have come to expect, in a design that has 35 percent more screen real estate than 7-inch tablets and up to  67 percent more usable viewing area when browsing the web. Plus, says Schiller, the dual-core A5 chip delivers responsive graphics and a fast, fluid multi-touch experience – while providing all-day battery life.

Additional specs include dual-band 802.11n Wi-Fi support for speeds up to 150 Mbps, a personal hotspot,  Bluetooth and Lightning connector. In addition, iPad mini data plans will be available with no contract so users can simply sign up and activate service directly from their devices.

iPad mini with Wi-Fi models will be available in black & slate or white & silver on Friday, November 2, for a suggested retail price of $329 (US) for the 16GB model, $429 (US) for the 32GB model and $529 (US) for the 64GB model.

iPad mini with Wi-Fi + Cellular will start shipping a couple of weeks after the Wi-Fi models, beginning in the US on AT&T, Sprint and Verizon. iPad mini with Wi-Fi + Cellular will be offered for a suggested retail price of $459 (US) for the 16GB model, $559 (US) for the 32GB model and $659 (US) for the 64GB model. Customers can begin pre-ordering all models of iPad mini on Friday, October 26 via the Apple Online Store.