Cantor Fitzgerald analyst Brian White has had his fair share of hits and misses over the years, and millions of Apple fans around the world will be hoping his latest report falls into the latter category. White wrapped up a week of meetings in China and Taiwan recently and he came away with a number of interesting claims. In his most recent note, the analyst claimed that Apple is indeed working on a new HD version of its popular iPad mini tablet but it will not be unveiled next week alongside the completely redesigned fifth-generation iPad. Instead, White says Apple has a minor mini update in store next week and then the new high-definition iPad mini will launch sometime in the first quarter next year.
“Interestingly enough, the accessories for a potential new iPad mini were not updated at the trade shows we attended, and the data points around a new iPad mini during our discussions were few,” White wrote in a note to clients on Monday morning. “Some of our contacts at the trade shows believe that minor changes (e.g., faster processor, etc.) will be made on the next iteration of the iPad mini for the Special Event on October 22 but that a major upgrade with Retina Display will not occur until 1Q:14. As such, we expect Apple’s October 22 Special Event to be more important for the larger iPad family, with the iPad 5 enjoying a meaningful overhaul, but we anticipate only a modest upgrade to the iPad mini and without the Retina Display.”
Apple fans shouldn’t despair, however. In reporting the timing of Apple’s upcoming iPad event, AllThingsD noted that the new iPad mini next week will indeed feature a high-definition Retina display on top of other enhancements. Considering the site’s track record, the smart money is probably on Retina heading into next week’s event.
We’re also expecting to see new color options on the second-generation iPad mini that match Apple’s iPhone 5s, as well as a few more improvements.