When Apple announced iPad Mini with Retina display, they didn’t provide its release date. Which was very unusual for Steve Jobs’s company.
But there was a very good reason for that. Apple simply can not make enough iPad Minis with Retina display.
And why is that? Because of the displays, of course.
Turns out, the screens with the pixel density Apple requires for Retina iPad Mini, are not so easy to come by. They’ve been talking to 4 potential suppliers: Taiwan’s AUO, Samsung, LG and Sharp. AUO wasn’t ready to compete in the big leagues, and Samsung, well it’s Sammy – and you know how Apple loves to have them as a key supplier.
Only now, they may not have a choice. There are some technological issues in mass producing that sized tablet Retina displays, only Samsung was able to solve. For more details check out these a-Si and LTPS display tech descriptions.
What matters in the end, is that neither of Apple’s chosen iPad Mini Retina display suppliers (LG, Sharp) was able to solve manufacturing yield issues, to deliver enough displays for this tablet. The problem is with something called “LCD burn-in” nobody can see, but which still falls below Apple’s standards.
So now, Retina iPad Mini is delayed, and Apple is hard at work renegotiating display supply terms with Samsung. Which is the only company in the World that can supply Apple with enough Retina Mini displays to satisfy the demand.
Unfortunately, after being kicked-out as a potential display supplier early this year, Samsung will be ready to deliver enough Mini Retina screens only sometime early next year.
Before that – expect weeks of waiting time for Retina iPad Mini, or be ready to hugely overpay in grey market.
IPad Mini production volumes will meet its demand next January, at best.