Apple's iPad Mini is paired with a fourth generation iPad, both with twice-as-fast WiFi and software updates
Apple unveiled the iPad Mini and a fourth-generation iPad, along with thinner, smaller MacBook Pros, iMacs and Mac desktops at a special event in San Jose on Tuesday.
The new 7.9-inch iPad Mini and iPad have a series of software updates, making them twice as fast as the third generation of the iPad.
"This is iPad Mini," Phil Schiller, Apple's vice president of worldwide marketing, said. "To put it in context, it's as thin as a pencil … As light as a pad of paper."
Schiller aggressively ripped the new, smaller tablet's Android-run rivals, juxtaposing the Google Nexus 7's thinner web-browsing screen with the iPad Mini's display.
"It is every inch an iPad," Schiller said, adding that it shares its 10-hour battery life with the fourth-generation iPad.
The WiFi performance is also twice as fast and features the same new connector as the iPhone 5. It will sell for $499.
The Mini will sell for $329, and the WiFi version will be available on Friday. Cellular versions of the device will begin shipping in two weeks.
"These aren't scaled up phone apps," said the narrator of a video introducing the Mini's features, harkening back to Schiller's criticiam of competitors, saying they were scaled up smartphones. "These are powerful apps."
Before the announcement, Apple CEO Tim Cook touted the iPad's quick adoption by educators, noting that more than 2,500 U.S. schools use the tablet device. He revealed a new version of iBooks Author, allowing publishers to edit existing books and use new templates.
"One of the things that is so rewarding and so amazing to us is how quickly iPad has been embraced in education," Cook said in at the event broadcast live online.
The MacBook is 20 percent thinner than its current incarnation and has a retina display with more than four million pixels. It ships out to store today and, with its 128GB of memory, will sell for $1,699.
The new iMac is skinny, too. The display is 5 millimeters thinner.
Apple stocks rose .32 percent to $613.68 in after-hours trading.