Apple to unveil 7.85in iPad mini on 23 October

Apple will unveil the eagerly anticipated, heavily rumoured iPad mini at a special launch event on 23 October, according to AllThingsD.

The publication reported that the iPad mini will be unveiled later this month at an invitation-only event.

Sources says that the iPad mini launch will be a more 'intimate' affair than the blockbuster unveiling of Apple's latest iPhone 5 smartphone last month. The iPhone 5 launch was held at the Yerba Buena Arts Centre in San Francisco and closed with a performance by the Foo Fighters

The launch also happens to be just three days prior to the release date for Microsoft's new range of Surface tablets.

The rumoured specs for the iPad mini include a 7.85in liquid-crystal display and a Lightning connector. It's expected to be thinner than the existing iPad, though it will reportedly lack any 3G or 4G connectivity. Rather, the slate will be Wi-Fi only, which will make it cheaper to produce and, therefore, help it compete better in the market.

With a screen size of 7.85in it will be slightly larger than its biggest rivals, Amazon's Kindle Fire and Google's Nexus 7, which both have 7in displays.