First launched in 2012, the iPad Mini's small size and lightweight design made it an attractive alternative to its bulkier cousin, the iPad. Of course, nothing lasts forever and the iPad Mini's time in the sun may soon be drawing to a close as reports suggest Apple is preparing to cease production of the tablet.
There are a lot of variables to consider when discussing a product's cancellation, but, in this particular case, the iPad Mini was a victim of Apple's own success as Apple's other products have rendered the iPad Mini obsolete.
A trusted source told BGR that the iPad had been "sized out of its own category" and that Apple was proud of the "fierce cannibalism of our own products."
Between A Rock And A Hard Place
When the iPad Mini was released in 2012, phablets weren't a thing. Smartphones, while certainly popular, still featured relatively small screens. Tablets, on the other hand, were often too bulky for many users, so the iPad Mini offered a middle ground between the two extremes.
In 2017, however, Apple fans have access to the 5.5-inch iPhone 7 Plus, which is large enough that many people use it in lieu of a tablet. This decision makes a lot of sense when you consider that you'll always have your phone with you anyway.
Of course, there are plenty of reasons someone might prefer a larger screen for gaming, web browsing, or reading. The problem is that the iPad Mini's 7.9-inch screen isn't that much bigger than that of the iPhone Plus. If you're going to invest the extra money on a tablet then most people will likely choose to grab a larger tablet.
Of course, Apple did the iPad Mini no favors by releasing a 9.7 inch iPad that is about $70 cheaper than the iPad Mini.
An Uncertain Future
Even leaving aside the fact that these reports are unconfirmed, the fate of the iPad Mini is far from certain. BGR's source indicated that Apple would cease updating the iPad Mini, but was unclear as to whether or not the current versions of the product would still be available in stores.
Further complicating matters are the rumors that Apple will be releasing an updated version of the iPad Pro, which will further dilute the iPad Mini's market share.
While these rumors have yet to be confirmed, it might be best to go ahead and buy an iPad Mini, if you want to get your hands on one.