The iPad 3 is rumored to be released in February 2012. It is expected to include a Retina Display, along with an upgraded battery and possibly a new form factor. Up until now the price hasn’t really been talked about for the release of the new iPad 3.
The success of the Kindle Fire has had many question the pricing structure of tablets, especially the Apple iPad. Amazon is having success with a device with not all the impressive specs, but a enticing price point. Apple of course is at the top of the list in terms of pricing. Like many technologies that Apple are involved with they are near or at the top in terms of pricing. For the iPad 2 the cheapest device you an purchase is $499 which give you the WiFi only 16Gb version.
Stephen Baker said during an interview with Macnewsworld, , “People think that Apple is not an aggressive pricing company but that’s really not the case. When they see the need to fill price points with different types of products they are very willing to do that. It will allow them to hold the value on the newer product while not letting more price-conscious customers walk away.”
It is unlikely that we will see the iPad 3 be released with a lower price. Apple always has a premium added to their new technology. With the iPad 3 expected to be the next revolutionary design to come from Apple, obtaining it at discount is unlikely. This however brings the iPad Mini rumors into light. The iPad Mini is expected to be a game changer from Apple. Similar to the Amazon Kindle Fire the iPad Mini wouldn’t be that impressive spec wise. The device however would turn heads for those interested in a economically priced tablet from Apple. If Apple was able to produce a device and price it around the $200 mark it would surely become the device to have. Of course there will still be those who are able and willing to pay the iPad 3 premium. However those who are on a tight budget would no longer be out of the Apple equation.
There have also been rumors that Apple may allow carriers to subsidize the iPad 3 price similar to the structure used for cell phones. This could potentially be a game changer in the tablet community. For those currently purchasing tablets equipped with 3G modems there is really no incentive outside the actual connection. Unlike cell phones providers are unable to give discounts to lure customers to their service. If this was offered you could potentially see an iPad 3 for $200 with a two year contract. We could see many people jump on this option and drop their data for their cell phone all together.