Apple has made its iPad mini tablet available for UK punters to purchase as of this morning.
The iPad mini is available from £269 for the base 16GB model, with the 32GB model costing £349, and 64GB version £429. That’s Wi-Fi only, as the cellular version (which adds support for 3G/LTE) won’t go on sale until later this month.
However, the buzz around the launch has been muted, and the queues are considerably smaller than they normally are.
Apparently only 100 folks lined up outside the Apple store in Regent Street, London – and reports suggest that globally, there wasn’t as much clamouring for the new compact slate.
Despite this, though, the online UK Apple store is indicating that units are shifting, and indeed there’s a stock shortage and two week wait for the cheapest model (though you can have the 32GB iPad mini within a few days or so, if you don’t mind paying a bit more).
The more cynical might suggest Apple manages its online store to be short on inventory around launch times – either that, or they’ve simply put a lot of stock out to shops.
It’s too early to declare the launch a flop – we’ll just have to see what initial sales figures emerge, with Apple normally pretty quick to boast about launch weekend figures the following week. If all is quiet next week, we’ll know that all isn’t well at Cupertino.
We’re betting this model won’t see the same demand as previous tablets, though. The price point is considerably higher than the cheap Nexus and Kindle tablets, which are £100 less – and indeed Apple’s cause isn’t going to have been helped by the announcement of the new Nexus 10 earlier this week.
That’s a full-sized tablet with an iPad-crushing resolution display (iPad 4, that is, not mini) for only £50 more than Apple’s little slate.