In a research note, Freedman says Apple is gathering parts from companies like Texas Instruments for the new iPad Mini. Freedman is visiting China, and his report is based on talks he had with sources in Apple's supply chain.
He's not the only analyst who thinks a new iPad Mini will launch soon. Piper Jaffray's Gene Munster says Apple will release an iPad Mini with a high-resolution Retina display in the first half of 2013.
Even though Apple typically sticks to annual releases for its big-name products, the consensus now seems to be that the company will push up its schedule to remain competitive. For example, Apple released its fourth-generation big iPad just seven months after the third-generation model launched.
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