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Tim Cook reiterates Steve Jobs' view, says Apple will 'never' make 7in tablet

When rumours about an iPad mini started making the rounds, many in the tech community pointed to comments Steve Jobs made two years ago in which he said the "current crop of 7-inch tablets are going to be DOA: Dead on Arrival."

The 7in form factor is "too small," Jobs said at the time, prompting many of us to conclude that Apple would never stray from its 9.7in iPad form factor. But earlier this week, Cupertino took the wraps off a 7.9in iPad mini, so what gives? Is Apple going against its co-founder and exploring a tablet size he apparently abhorred? Absolutely not, current Apple chief Tim Cook said today.

"Let me be clear, we would not make one of the 7-inch tablets," Cook said during the company's third-quarter earnings call. "We don't think they're good products, and we would never make one."

Cook reiterated what Apple's Phil Schiller said during Tuesday's iPad mini unveiling: apps look horrible on 7in tablets like the Google Nexus 7.

"The difference in just the real estate size between 7.9, almost 8, versus 7 is 35 percent, and when you look at the usable area, it's much greater than that," Cook said. "It's from 50 to 67 percent and also, the iPad mini has the same number of pixels as iPad 2 does, so you have access to all 275,000 apps that are in our App Store that have been custom designed to take advantage of the full canvas."

The iPad mini is "fantastic," Cook continued, "not a compromised product like the 7-inch tablets. It's in a whole different league."

Cook, meanwhile, was also not impressed by Microsoft's new Surface tablet.