Reuters reports the retina iPad Mini (AAPL -0.5%) "could be available in only limited quantities this year, if at all," thanks to display manufacturing challenges.
Sources say Apple's supply chain is just beginning to gear up to make displays for the tablet, and that Apple delayed certifying display manufacturers; LG Display (LPL), Samsung Display, and Sharp (SHCAY.PK) reportedly competed to supply panels.
Bloomberg previously reported a retina Mini and 5th-gen iPad would arrive this year, andthe WSJ reported "mass production" of a retina Mini would start in Q4. Reuters' report comes as Amazon rolls out new Kindle Fires with high-res displays, and a couple months after Google rolled out a second-gen Nexus 7 with a high-res display to good reviews.
Separately, Apple has hired Jean-Francois Mule, once an SVP for cable TV R&D consortium CableLabs, to be an engineering director. That's boosting speculation the company is working on set-tops that provide direct access to pay-TV content.