Just like a new born baby takes attention away from older siblings, Apple’s iPad Mini has been the centre of attention for Apple fanatics, while iPad 4 sales have reportedly gone down. Reuters has recently reported that Sharp has significantly reduced production of full-size iPad screens. The production of 9.7 inch screens has been halted to dedicate increased resources to 7.9 inch screens.

iPad Mini Killing iPad 4

Sharp did keep the productions of 9.7 inches to the minimum, just to keep the line running, but the Kameyama plant in Japan will be producing an increased amount of 7.9 inch screens. Representatives from Sharp did not specify a reason as to why this was done, but it is being speculated that the demand of iPad 4 might be decreasing due to the increasing demand of iPad mini.

Rough estimates suggest that Apple has sold between 8 million to 12 million iPad mini units since its release. The iPad 3 and 4 sold a lot less units than their predecessors, and with the option to buy a mini or an iPad 4, a buyer is most likely to go for an iPad mini.

The news that Sharp had minimized the production of 9.7 inch screens has resulted in a 1 percent drop in Apple’s shares, and the stock value has gone below 500 dollars for the first time in ages.

From the news, it seems as if iPad mini has cannibalized iPad 4, but that may not be the reason why the Sharp minimized the production. Tablets are durable, faster, and reliable devices that last for years and do not need to be replaced every couple of years.

The number of Tablet users out there is finite, and is not increasing at an exponential rate, mostly because the new smartphones are providing better alternatives when it comes to processor speed. Most of the Tablet users already have a Tablet, and those who are looking for a new one would have to choose between the slick iPad mini and the classic iPad 4. The rate at which iPad mini is flying off the shelves indicates that the buyers have made their choice.

The production for iPad 4 is nowhere near halted, and we can expect a few million units to sell in 2013; however, we can also expect iPad mini to be the top earner for Apple this year, unless they come up with something newer and better.