Here are your Apple rumors and AAPL news items for Friday:
Smaller iPad May be in Development: According to DigiTimes, Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL) is working toward diversifying its tablet line. Compact tablets are increasingly popular, and Amazon (NASDAQ:AMZN) has managed to corner demand with its 7-inch Kindle Fire. According to supply chain leaks, Apple is moving forward with producing its own 7.85-inch model for entry into the compact tablet market. With the iPad 3 slated for release next Wednesady, Apple has been attracting notice for its tablet’s uniquely high price. However, Apple seems to be planning a broad line of less expensive iPads — with DigiTimes reporting that Apple’s 7.85-inch model may retail for as low as $249, and a pending 8G iPad 2 could sell for $349-$399.
Apple Pushes Forward With Plans for Streaming TV Service: The New York Post reports that Apple is determinedly moving forward with plans to launch its own streaming TV service by Christmas this year, despite ongoing difficulties contracting with content providers. Apple has been caught in negotiations stalemate with major media outlets, who feel frustrated by Apple’s strict demands for content and pricing control. Pay-TV services already represent a lucrative $150 billion market, with Comcast (NASDAQ:CMCSA) recently launching Streampix and Time Warner (NYSE:TWX) planning to debut its own streaming content service. Sony (NYSE:SNE) also has ambitions to enter the web-based TV market. However, Apple maintains steadfast in pursuit of a Winter 2012 launch, and is planning a unique version of the content streaming format — including purchasable apps for different channels. In the meanwhile, Apple is said to be negotiating deals with major telecom partners Verizon (NYSE:VZ) and AT&T (NYSE:T).
iPad 3 Facing Stiff Competition in Tablet Market: According to the Washington Post, the iPad 3 will be debuting in an increasingly competitive tablet market. Amazon is maintaining its status as an aggressive competitor, and its Kindle Fire retails for $199, undercutting the much pricier $499 iPad 2. Barnes and Noble‘s (NYSE:BKS) Nook retails at an especially conservative sum — with the Wi-Fi version of the Nook Simple Touch selling for $99 in the U.S. market. Acer and Asus also will have offerings. While Apple has a unique strength of brand name, the markedly elevated price of its iPad 3 may hand frugal consumers over to its competitors.
Adam Patterson is Assistant Editor of InvestorPlace. As of this writing, he did not hold a position in any of the aforementioned securities. For more from the company, check out our previous Apple Rumors stories.