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Apple's Rumored 'iPad Mini' Could Be Big Hit Abroad

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If Apple were to accompany its expected September launch of an iPhone 5 with an “iPad Mini” announcement as well, it may ignite revenue in markets such as China and Europe because a smaller tablet would be more attractive in those countries, according to an analyst.

Apple will debut its new iPhone and an iPad Mini on Sept. 12, according to iMore.com, a site devoted to Apple rumors. Shares of Apple, which did not yet return call for comment, jumped 2 percent on the report Monday.

“A smaller-sized iPad would prove beneficial to Apple by expanding the company’s reach in developing countries such as China and elsewhere, while also catering to more price sensitive consumer in developed parts of the world, such as the U.S. and Europe,” wrote Topeka Capital’s Brian White, who has speculated Apple would make such a move for a while, in a note.

Apple got hit last week initially following its earnings report after sales missed expectations. Apple executives said on the conference call that rumors about the iPhone 5 release were hurting current sales of the iPhone 4S.

The growth figures on the iPad continue to be shocking.

Apple sold 17 million of the device last quarter, an 84 percent jump over a year ago. But the company was only able to launch the tablet officially in China last week because of a trademark dispute and reports suggest sales have not been as robust so far in the region as in other countries. A smaller device may help that.

“A 7.85-inch iPad Mini would likely prove less obtrusive during social outings and more easily tucked into a purse or jacket than a 9.7-inch iPad,” said Topeka’s White. Also “a smaller, more portable device would prove more suitable for younger children, while schools would appreciate the lower price point given the growing budget constraints.”

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