Rumors surrounding a possible 7.85-inch version of the iPad, often dubbed the “iPad mini,” have been anything but scarce, with the first rumors dating back to shortly after the release of the original iPad. A new confirmation from Apple guru John Gruber, however, seems to add more weight to the idea that Apple is indeed testing such a device.
“What I do know is that they have one in the lab, a 7.85″ iPad that runs at 1024 x 768. And it’s just like the 9.7-inch iPad shrunk down a little bit. The apps wouldn’t need to be redesigned or recompiled to work on it — it’s just the iPad smaller.”
Gruber is typically a very accurate source of information relating to Apple, and is very well connected with Apple and with people that are familiar with the company’s inner workings. As such, his comments are definitely worth taking note of.
It’s also important to note, however (as Gruber points out), that Apple creates and tests many prototypes that are never released to the public. Steve Jobs has also notably spoken out against the notion of a smaller version of the iPad.
There have been strong indications in the past that Apple has been testing a 7.85-inch iPad, with some reports even claiming that Apple may even be getting quotes and working with suppliers on possibly producing the device at some point. None of these things are clear signs that such a product will ever be released, however.