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Here’s why Apple’s Retina iPad mini launch was so surprisingly quiet

Retina iPad Mini Launch

Apple surprised anxious fans around the world earlier this week when it quietly launched its new second-generation iPad mini tablet in the middle of the night with no warning. Those who had been eagerly awaiting the new high-definition mini slate scrambled to place their orders as soon as they woke up and read the news — and therein lies Apple’s logic in debuting the new Retina iPad mini so quietly. According to Internet Marketer Ed Dale, this was a carefully calculated move on Apple’s part, and a smart one as well.

Apple’s Retina iPad mini supply is ridiculously constrained. We all read the rumors that had been trickling out over the past few months, and this quiet launch solidifies them. According to a recent report from a very solid source, manufacturing difficulties will mean Apple only ships about 2.3 million Retina iPad mini tablets this quarter. Unfortunately for consumers, that will likely only cover a fraction of demand.

So, how does Apple ensure that its loudest, most dedicated fans procure their new iPad minis when supply is so short?

From Ed Dale:

By soft releasing the iPad Mini Retina, Apple achieved three crucial things.

  • Apple’s biggest fans got theirs first. Who knew about this first? The people who follow the Apple blogs and digerati. Judging by Twitter, this worked perfectly.
  • The grey market queueing for the iPad Mini Retina was going to be immense. By going online the incredibly poor optics (the front of Apple lines, which attracts a lot of media, was full of people who were not fans but paid to be there) are mitigated.
  • The last thing Apple wants is hundreds of customers turning up everyday to be dissappointed [sic] in a store which is meant to be a happy place — Apple does not want their stores to be associated with disappointment and frustration!

No further explanation needed.

Apple’s iPad mini with Retina display is available now — if you can find one — starting at $399 with Wi-Fi only and $539 with 4G LTE.

Zach Epstein

Zach Epstein has been the Executive Editor at BGR for more than 10 years. He manages BGR’s editorial team and ensures that best practices are adhered to. He also oversees the Ecommerce team and directs the daily flow of all content.

Zach first joined BGR in 2007 as a Staff Writer covering business, technology, and entertainment. His work has been quoted by countless top news organizations, and he was recently named one of the world's top 10 “power mobile influencers” by Forbes. Prior to BGR, Zach worked as an executive in marketing and business development with two private telcos.