Crazy rumor suggests an ‘iPad mini’ this year

The iPad 2 hasn’t even been announced yet and already people have begun speculating about the iPad 3…or as some are calling it, the iPad Mini.

Well-connected blogger John Gruber, who is known for having iron clad Apple contacts, wrote yesterday, “If my theory is right, they’re not only going to be months behind the iPad 2, but if they slip until late summer, they might bump up against the release of the iPad 3.”

Given Apple’s track record, we wouldn’t be surprised if it was in fact planning two iPad releases this year, in a bid to stifle the growing competition from Android-based tablets coming from multiple manufacturers.

This gives Apple a disadvantage since it is just one company. If it releases one tablet a year, it already starts to look outdated.

This particular story is the culmination of rumors and takes a look at Gruber’s history – he sometimes “leaks” big stories by trying to conceal them and make them sound nonchalant.

Beyond Gruber’s story, people are running with previous Apple comments about how the company is interested in making a smaller version of the iPad – one that is actually usable with one hand and could fit more easily into a purse or shoulder bag.

The current iPad is about 10 inches diagonally, which makes for a nice computing experience but isn’t exactly portable. Samsung’s Galaxy Tab, as well as other competing tablets, sit more around 7 inches.

Clearly it will be a while before we know if any of this comes true, but it’s fun to think about, isn’t it?