New iPad Mini displays to enter production this month?

Analyst claims production of screens destined for the miniature slate will kick off in August

New iPad Mini displays will reportedly enter production this month, claims analyst, further fuelling reports of a September iPad Mini release date

iPad Mini displays will enter production this month, according to an analyst.

Paul Semenza, an analyst at NPD DisplaySearch, said: "We expect panel production to start in August, with production ramping up to high volumes in the fourth quarter."

His predications were based on the "understanding of the activity for the 7.85[in] panel expected to be used in the Mini."

His comments agree with earlier reports that Apple is gearing up to launch a miniature version of its popular new iPad, alongside the rumoured iPhone 5 in September.

This follows on from reports that Sharp will begin shipping displays destined for the next iPhone this month.

The shock admission was made by the firm's president, Takashi Okuda, during his company's quarterly earnings call in Tokyo yesterday.

Not much is known about the iPad Mini, however, rumours suggest the tablet will don the same pin-sharp display as the iPad 3, as well as price tag of under £200. In comparison, Google's Nexus 7 currently retails for £199 in the UK.

The slate's screen is expected to be a little as 7 inches, however, other reports have claimed two versions of the slate could be available - one with a 7-inch screen, and another with a 9-inch screen.

Apple's biggest rival, Samsung, is also expected to launch a new version of its popular 'phablet' (the term given for devices that double up as both a phone and a tablet), known as the Samsung Galaxy Note 2 at IFA in Berlin later this month.