I noticed on Black Friday (the day after Thanksgiving; this year, November 29) that Apple had discounts on seemingly all of their iPad models: iPad 2, iPad Air and iPad Mini. Usually, Apple discounts prices that day (for many products, the only time they’re ever discounted); this year, the discount took the form of a gift card for the Apple Store. Tricksy Apple — we don’t actually get a cheaper price, we just get more for our money.
When I went to order the one I wanted (the new retina-display version of the iPad Mini), I realized they didn’t have discounts on quite all the iPads. The “iPad Mini with Retina Display” is considered a different model and product than the normal “iPad Mini” (fair enough, I suppose) and there was no discount available.
My question: if Apple was discounting all other iPads including the equally-new and presumably hot-selling iPad Air, but not the Retina Mini, what does this indicate about the Retina Mini?
I have 2 theories:
The Retina Mini is in such high demand and/or short supply they have no need to discount it to sell it faster than they can make it.
The Retina Mini is already priced much closer to breakeven, and they can’t sell it significantly cheaper without losing money.
I have no idea which of these (if either) is true. I will note that, having ordered both an iPad Air and an iPad Mini with Retina Display that same day (identically configured, and given the $75 near-rebate on the Air, for nearly the same price), the Mini showed up a full week before the Air. That might put a hole in theory #1. Or it might just mean that the $75-off-an-Air promotion was such a huge hit that it created a huge backlog for the Air.