iPad mini goes on sale in UK; moderate excitement ensues

iPad mini goes on sale in UK; moderate excitement ensues

Summary: The mid-sized tablet's launch on Friday did attract queues, but not on the scale of those that greeted devices such as the iPhone 5.

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TOPICS: Apple, iPad, Mobility, Tablets
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The launch of the iPad mini on Friday has attracted moderate queues in London, with fans lining up to get in early on the mid-sized tablet.

ipad-mini-queue-main

ZDNet's sister site CNET UK visited Apple's flagship store in Covent Garden early in the morning, to find what appears to have been a couple of dozen people waiting for the doors to open — not an insubstantial number, but not the scores of people that queued for mega-launches such as that for the iPhone 5.

"I did expect it to be slightly busier than this," one customer, who had been waiting since 3.30am, told the site. "I did an iPhone 4S event and we had to be ushered and split apart because it was overcrowded."

The iPad mini is the cheapest of Apple's tablets, starting at £269 for the 16GB, Wi-Fi-only model — 4G-enabled versions will go on sale later this month.

Those who buy the device through Apple's website will get free engraving, but will also have to wait two weeks for delivery.

Apple's new tablet has a 7.9-inch screen and, as such, is up against much cheaper devices such as Google's Nexus 7 and Amazon's Kindle Fire HD. The Nexus 7, for example, costs £169 but offers a much more powerful processor and better screen resolution (although the dimensions of the iPad mini's screen allow more content to be shown when browsing the web).

Topics: Apple, iPad, Mobility, Tablets

David Meyer

About David Meyer

David Meyer is a freelance technology journalist. He fell into journalism when he realised his musical career wouldn't pay the bills. David's main focus is on communications, as well as internet technologies, regulation and mobile devices.

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9 comments
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  • Typo

    Nexus 7 starts at £159 for the 16GB, not £169.
    DTJ29
  • moderate excitement ensues

    I think this may end up being Apple's first real mis-step in quite some time. Compared to the competition, and even the larger iPad 4... this device just doesn't seem to have a place. It's too high priced, and too low spec'd to be a huge hit.

    I'm sure it will sell quite a few, and it will work well for some... I just doubt seriously it will be the mega hit tablet we're used to seeing from Apple.
    Badgered
    • It is not a "misstep"; iPad min is more mobile device, so it has to have ..

      ... cellular connectivity. Yet this variant of device will only appear few weeks later.
      DDERSSS
  • Naive resellers?

    These are naive flippers who hope they would make some quick bucks reselling the item on eBay. The iPad Mini is a scam, only the uninformed would fall for it. A Nexus 7 is better in every way and cost 40% cheaper!
    RelaxWalk
    • better is subjective

      I've said it before but some people feel locked into apple because of the apps and music and easy of use for what they want, tech heads no, but common people don't understand tech so for them Apple is better if alot more expensive which is the only reason normal people will buy andriod at the moment, sad but true.
      dragonblack
  • Fanboi Fatigue

    Looks like Apple's attempt to avoid becoming a seasonal seller by upping the ti‌thing from its followers has failed.
    ldo17
  • They probably got lost using Apple Maps

    and thought they were queing up for pizzas.
    JulesVerny
  • Great product

    Here the first iPad mini buyers in Covent Garden: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ioz07MsiffM&feature=plcp
    EXIV
  • The Microsoft Surface queues

    Any pictures of those at the Microsoft Store?
    johnsmith9875