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Rumoured iPad Mini to be cheaper, compete with Nexus 7, Kindle Fire

The next Apple event is likely months away, but that hasn't stopped the rumour mill. Most of the leaks or inside tips making the rounds are focused on size - namely a bigger iPhone and smaller iPad. If they do make their debut, how will those devices fare against rivals like Samsung's Galaxy S3, Google's Nexus 7, or Amazon's Kindle Fire?

On the iPad front, the New York Times has joined the Wall Street Journal and Bloomberg to report that Apple is prepping a 7.85in iPad that will sell for "significantly less" than the current Apple tablet.

The Journal had a similar story earlier this month, as did Bloomberg.

Last week, meanwhile, posted photos of what the blog said were iPad Mini engineering photos. They show a tablet that's thinner and smaller than the current iPad with the rumoured 19-pin dock connector and two speakers instead of one.

Much of the discussion has focused on how the iPad Mini might compete against - or crush - the Nexus 7 or Kindle Fire. Google's Nexus 7 started shipping on Friday, and Amazon is rumoured to be unveiling a second-generation Kindle Fire 2 later this summer. The Times said Amazon is prepping a Fire tablet with a larger screen.

With respect to the iPhone, Chinese blog posted photos of what it claims to be the next-gen iPhone frame, with a centred FaceTime camera, 9to5Mac noted.

According to reports earlier this week, US retailers have already begun selling out of Google's Nexus 7, just days after its release.