Tru App users may have yet another iconic device with which to make their VoIP calls. According to an unnamed official at Samsung, Apple plans to launch a smaller version of its popular iPad tablet later this year.
While speaking with The Korea Times, the anonymous Samsung official said that Apple will likely spend a record $11 billion on Samsung-sourced parts for its various devices in 2012.
“The amount of the current contract is around $9.7 billion,” The Korea Times was told. “The contract is expected to rise to $11 billion by the end of this year as Apple is planning to release a smaller iPad, probably with a 7.85-inch screen, and to sell more of its MacBook Air PCs using Samsung’s faster solid state drive (SSD) storage.”
The disclosure comes with Apple just days away from releasing the new iPad, which has an enhanced resolution display, but remains the same 10-inch size as previous models. Steve Jobs had previously dismissed the size and usability of a 7-inch tablet, saying it was too small to be used as a touchscreen tablet device.
Still, with the success of the lower cost Amazon Kindle Fire, which is a 7-inch tablet, Apple may look to get into that segment of the market as well.
Apple’s 7.85-inch iPad Mini, which is what it is referred to in technology circles, has been rumored on a number of occasions, and Samsung Securities mentioned the unconfirmed tablet recently in a confidential report. Samsung currently supplies a variety of parts for Apple’s PCs and mobile devices, and the company is reportedly the sole supplier of Retina Displays for Apple’s new iPad, which goes on sale Friday, March 16th.
Until confirmed by Apple, we’ll stash this in the Rumors bin, but we hope this will see the light of day.