Apple raised iPad Mini prices while our heads were turned and it sucks

iPad mini 2021
(Image credit: TechRadar)

Off the back of new entry-level iPads and iPad Pros being released on October 18, non-US markets have seen a significant price increase for the existing iPad mini models on Apple’s website. 

In the UK the 64GB iPad Mini is now listed at £569, up from £479, while the 256GB model now costs £749 from £619. All in all that's a 19%-21% increase, which is no small amount. Similar price hikes can be seen across the EU market, and no explicit reason for this has been given by Apple as of yet. 

Raising the prices of the existing iPad models to make the newer versions appear more budget-friendly is bad news for non-US consumers and not particularly consumer-friendly in general. The same thing happened not too long ago with the iPhone SE when the iPhone 14 was released, though at a smaller scale in comparison.

There seems to be a pattern emerging here, with Apple dropping new products on us with heavier and heavier price tags. In our review of this year's M2 MacBook Air, we made a note of the startling new asking price for the MacBook Air compared to the MacBook Air M1 when it launched in 2020. It will be interesting to see if this trend will continue across new launches and products in the future and if we should get accustomed to dreading a new product dropping with the suspicion that its predecessors will become more expensive.

The scary thought creeps in and we have to wonder: will MacBooks and iPads continue to go up in price from here on out, and by how much each time? With rumors flying around that we might be getting a new fleet of MacBooks any day now, this costly consistency does not bode well for those of us itching to get a new MacBook anytime soon.

Analysis: If you want a cheap Apple device, wait until Black Friday

If MacBooks are indeed getting more expensive - does it make sense to buy one now? With Black Friday approaching, there’s a good chance that we’ll see prices drop for existing MacBooks. A cheap MacBook is a relative thing - they're not inexpensive laptops at the best of times - but now more than ever are you likely to find the best MacBook for you at a less painful price.

In fact, if Apple does indeed announce new laptops, perhaps followups to the MacBook Pro 14-inch and MacBook Pro 16-inch, Black Friday could be a superb time to get the older models, as retailers clear stock ahead of the newer versions going on sale.

Buying a new MacBook or any big tech purchase so close to Black Friday is risky, as you don’t want to risk buying something that ends up getting a price cut a few weeks later. We have a feeling there will be plenty of Black Friday MacBook deals later this year - so more expensive iPads might not be the awful news you might have expected.

Muskaan Saxena
Computing Staff Writer

Muskaan is TechRadar’s UK-based Computing writer. She has always been a passionate writer and has had her creative work published in several literary journals and magazines. Her debut into the writing world was a poem published in The Times of Zambia, on the subject of sunflowers and the insignificance of human existence in comparison.

Growing up in Zambia, Muskaan was fascinated with technology, especially computers, and she's joined TechRadar to write about the latest GPUs, laptops and recently anything AI related. If you've got questions, moral concerns or just an interest in anything ChatGPT or general AI, you're in the right place.

Muskaan also somehow managed to install a game on her work MacBook's Touch Bar, without the IT department finding out (yet).