Apple (Nasdaq: AAPL) stock fell by more than 1.5 percent Tuesday morning despite mounting anticipation for the day’s announcement about the heavily-rumored iPad Mini, in addition to several other iterative current product line-up improvements.
Share prices, which rose steadily on Monday, started trading Tuesday below the previous day’s closing price of $634.03 and fell as low as $621.64 in late morning trading. Share prices continued to wobble below $630, more than $30 lower than the all-time high the Cupertino, California-based company’s reached in late August as anticipation for the latest model of its acclaimed smartphone, the iPhone 5, rose to a fever pitch.
Apple is widely expected to announce a new version of the iPad. At a possible 7.85 inches and with a correspondingly smaller price tag, the device that has come to be referred to “iPad mini” would be the company’s first new hardware class introduced since the company first unveiled the original iPad in 2010.
Since that device was first released, however, the tablet marketplace has become increasingly crowded as competing tech giants such as Amazon (Nasdaq: AMZN), Google (Nasdaq: GOOG), and Samsung (KRX: 005930) have tried to undercut Apple with cheaper and smaller devices of their own. While Amazon and Google’s comparative market share is still hard to assess since the former does not usually release sales numbers for its Kindle Fire tablet and the former’s Nexus 7 tablet was only released four months ago, the fact that a historically unblinking company like Apple may be interested in shrinking one of its own devices hints that even the world’s most valuable tech giant is feeling the pinch of competition.
During Apple’s iPhone 5 announcement last month, the company’s stock jumped to $668.79, rising as high as $671.20 in the immediate aftermath of the smartphone’s triumphant debut.