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Supply chain issues may delay iPad mini 2 launch

Apple’s manufacturing partners fail to ramp up production in time to meet volume demand

The successor to the iPad mini may not be released until next year.
The successor to the iPad mini may not be released until next year.

Problems with Apple Inc’s manufacturing partners in integration of Retina displays in the new iPad mini may delay the launch or limit availability of the device, Reuters reported.

GALLERY: The Apple iPad mini

The ultra high-definition Retina system, designed to hide pixilation from the human eye, is already part of full-sized iPads and similar systems have been developed by Amazon and Google.

Companies that are making the Retina displays on Apple’s behalf will be unable to escalate production to significant volume until early next year, insiders said. In an increasingly crowded market, screen definition and imaging capabilities are vital components of competitive products and Apple will be under additional pressure to cut costs following the launch of the pricier-than-expected iPhone 5C.

"Right now the iPad mini is more expensive than everyone else in the 7- to 8-inch tablet segment," said Arthur Liao, an analyst for Fubon Securities in Taipei. "If it could reduce its price by even just $50, it would appeal to more consumers."

GALLERY: The Apple iPad mini

Apple’s South Korean nemesis Samsung has been rapidly swallowing more of the tablet market, as it did in the smartphone segment, where it now leads comfortably. According to figures from IDC’s Tracker series, the iPad's market share slid to 32.5% in the second quarter, while Android devices, which include Samsung's Galaxy series, grabbed 62.6%.