Fake iPad Mini pic sparks debate again

A blurrycam snap of what appears to be a seven-inch iPad is doing the rounds of the Internet at the moment, but we're not convinced.

Several tech sites are covering the story but as yet no-one seems to have been taken in by the low-resolution snap of minor Taiwanese celebrity and racing driver Jimmy Lin clutching the diminutive device.

Rumours of a shrunken iPad persist despite Steve Jobs saying in no uncertain terms that he thinks tablet computers below the iPad's 9.7 inches are a bit pointless, and we're calling shenanigans on this one as well.

We've analysed the shot carefully but the quality is not good enough to make a definitive call on Photoshop fakery. We suspect that if the image hasn't been doctored, the device might just be a cheap knock off which you can pick up for a few dollars all over Taiwan.

Even if Apple had decided to go against its Messianic leader's diktat, which we very much doubt, the Cupertino company is notoriously secretive about new products and certainly wouldn't be handing prototypes out to local sports personalities.

Now if it had turned up on a stool in a California beer bar, that would be a different matter.