As shown in the past, Apple has a tendency to stay true to the semiconductor vendors that provide its products with parts. The Apple iPad Mini is no exception to this practice. Broadcom is the first major repeat design winner we see in the new iPad Mini.
Broadcom picked up three major design wins, two of which for their touchscreen controllers. The Broadcom BCM5976, which have been found in the iPad 3, the MacBook Air and the iPhone 5 has two sockets on the Mini. The other major design win comes for their four-in-one combo wireless chip, the BCM4334, which was also found in the Samsung Galaxy S3 and the iPhone 5. Below is an image of the Broadcom ICs we've analyzed using our de-encapsulation (decap) process:
Inside the Murata module containing the Broadcom BCM4334.
From a functional perspective, one has to wonder if Apple's decision to not use a retina-based display and a faster processor, like the A6 or the recently introduced A6X, was in line with their thinking of iterative improvements (i.e. giving people something to look forward to in the iPad Mini 2) or if it was a design decision as a faster processor and more vibrant display may put heavy demands on the 16.5Whr battery and jeopardize the characteristic of Apple products as energy-conserving electronics.
In terms of its design, the Apple iPad Mini takes advantage of Apple's previous design methodologies to create a product that Apple feels will address the growing consumer demand for 7-inch tablets. The Apple pessimist will point to the iPad Mini as half an iPad 2. But the Apple optimist will call the Mini a supersized iPod Touch. Consumers will decide if the $329 price tag is worth the spend.
Allan Yogasingam is a technical research manager at UBM TechInsights, owned by the same company that publishes EE Times, UBM plc.
Click through the following pages for images from the UBM TechInsights of the Apple iPad Mini.
I am not so sure how well 7" tablet sell in the US market. It seems to me Americans are looking for laptop replacement that 10" tablet suits the demand. I have a friend working at http://www.123move.org who has got a Samsung note 2.
It still baffles my mind that all tablet makers still limit cellular usage to data only. To me, it only makes sense that you could use a bluetooth headset for phone functions and have one truly useful device instead of lugging around multiple products.
Alas, businesses seemed to be more focused on maintaining a quarterly revenue stream than providing products that make sense.
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iPad Mini looks like a beautiful product and just the right size - thank you for the analysis.
One item is missing, however. A phone modem (BB) is offered as an option. Who is the supplier for the phone BB and transceiver ICs? Is it Qualcomm - or somebody else - like Intel or ST-E?
Many thanks in advance
I have a MacBook Air, iPad (3rd Generation), and now an iPad Mini. While their functions overlap, each has specific jobs to do for me. I'd like to get down to two devices for travel, but while I'm sorting this out, the three together weigh significantly less than the Dell notebook my company issues. As an extra bonus, each is a whole lot more pleasurable to use.....
I have the smallest Kindle which weighs 6 oz. I LOVE the size and portability - great for reading, but terrible at surfing. Thus I was waiting for the IPAD mini. But it's disappointing for 3 reasons, price, mediocre resolution, and its too heavy. Maybe in a couple of years someone will make I tablet for me - 7", 6 oz, HIRES, fair price.