The New York Times provides some additional hints on the rumor about a forthcoming iPad mini with a 7.89" display. If the name is not defined yet, Apple cannot let competitors to invade this part of the tablet markets without offering its own product.
According to the newspaper, the iPad "mini" will be available at a lower price than the current iPad 2 (499 USD), however, it is unlikely that Apple will enter frontal competition with the Google Nexus 7 available from 199 USD or with Amazon Kindle Fire (same price). We think that the iPad mini will most likely be launched at 299 or 399 USD, to preserve the "high-end" standard of Apple products.
As a reminder, Steve Jobs was refusing to release such product, as the size make it difficult to be comfortable to use, however, maybe the HD Retina display and Tim Cook strategy have changed the deal, and it could be the first product to be released and not initially fully supported by Steve Jobs, even though R&D might have started months if not years before.
By linathael, original by Lionel