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Tepid Demand Seen for iPad Mini

Stocks in this article: AAPL AMZN BKS

NEW YORK ( TheStreet) -- With rumors continuing to persist about an Apple (AAPL) "iPad Mini," it appears that demand for such a device may not be there.

Of the 1,049 readers who voted in a poll by TheStreet, just 32.12%, or 337 of respondents voted, "Yes -- I'll buy anything Apple related."

There may be some hope, however, if Apple is able to make a 7.85-inch tablet, and not compromise on the user experience. More than 35% of voters said they might purchase a smaller iPad, but they would need to see it first. Rumors of a smaller iPad have persisted for months, and have grown stronger in recent days, as Apple gets set to sell its latest tablet on Friday.

Nearly a third of those who participated in the poll, 32.79%, agreed with former CEO Steve Jobs that a 7-inch tablet was "dead on arrival." Jobs once said during a 2010 earnings call that he didn't think the size was right for the software. "The reason we won't make a 7-inch tablet isn't because we don't want to hit a lower price point, it's because we think the screen is too small to express the software."

Amazon (AMZN) and Barnes & Noble (BKS) have shown that there is a demand for 7-inch tablets, but at significantly lower price points. Both Amazon's Kindle Fire and Barnes & Noble Nook are priced far lower than the iPad, but offer less features. Apple recently cut the price of its iPad 2 to $399, as it introduced a new iPad last week.

Apple shares are surging in afternoon action, rising 4.4% to $593.17 at last check. The session's peak of $594.73 is yet another all-time high for the stock, which has soared more than 40% since the start of the year.

Interested in more on Apple? See TheStreet Ratings' report card for this stock.

Check out our new tech blog, Tech Trends. Follow TheStreet Tech on your wireless devices.

-- Written by Chris Ciaccia in New York

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