Much has been made over the $329 sticker price of the iPad mini — to the point where Schiller had to defend the price to Reuters yesterday. However, one report puts the blame for the high price on low screen yields, marking one of the key components tricky to get hold of.
The often unreliable Digitimes has published a report citing low yields in the production of the screen for why the iPad mini is pricey:
The US$329 price tag for Apple’s iPad mini is largely due to low yield rates for the device’s GF2 (DITO film) touch screen technology, according to industry sources.
The sources said the DITO film sensor is having mass production issues, which has been a big contributor to why the device is approximately 40-50% more expensive compared to other 7-inch tablets that have OGS or G/G structures.
While a Digitimes report isn’t always wise to use as a basis for, well, anything, this does tie into another industry report. Earlier this week, CNET published a report from an analyst claiming that the iPad mini might be in short supply because on of the screen suppliers hasn’t produced as many components as Apple needs.
Together, these reports seem to indicate that those small, high quality screens are a bit hard to come by. However, if they’re true, it could also mean that once Apple gets the production apparatus properly up and running, we might even see a price reduction.