Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL) has started accepting orders for the latest Retina iPad mini in the U.S. and several other countries, beginning at midnight (Pacific Time) on Nov. 12.
According to the U.S. Apple Store website, the Wi-Fi version of the Retina iPad mini will be shipped within one to three business days, while the Wi-Fi + Cellular version of the device will shipped within five to 10 business days.
Although Apple did not make any announcement related to the surprise release of the Retina iPad mini, reports surfaced online on Monday citing a mention of the Nov. 12 launch of the device on the company’s Global Service Exchange website for service providers. The leak on the GSX website suggested that the Retina iPad mini would go on sale beginning on Tuesday in Australia, China, Hong Kong, Japan, New Zealand, Singapore and the U.S.
Following the leak, all of Apple's online stores around the world went offline, leading many to assume that the shutdown was due to preparations for an imminent Retina iPad mini launch.
According to MacRumors, the reason behind Apple’s quiet launch of the Retina iPad mini can be attributed to the widely rumored supply constraints of the device. Recent reports have suggested that issues related to production of the device's display panels could limit the initial supply at launch.
Here are the pricing details of the Retina iPad mini, based on storage capacity and connectivity:
16GB -- $399
32GB -- $499
64GB -- $599
128GB -- $699
Wi-Fi + Cellular version:
16GB -- $529
32GB -- $629
64GB -- $729
128GB -- $829
The Retina iPad mini features a 7.9-inch screen with a resolution of 2048 x 1536 pixels. It sports the powerful and power-efficient Apple-designed A7 chip with 64-bit desktop-class architecture and the M7 coprocessor, which was originally introduced in the iPhone 5s.