I was one of the folks kind of bummed when the $329 price tag was unveiled for the new iPad mini from Apple. I was hoping for something competitive with the Nexus 7 at $199, etc.
So why the high price?
Well, it’s only a high price if you look at the iPad mini as a competitor to the Nexus 7, Kindle Fire, etc. But for a moment pretend they don’t exist — with iPad 2 at $400, iPad 3 at $500, the price of the iPad mini makes sense.
Which makes me think Apple never meant the iPad mini to be a “response” to the low-priced 7″ tablets. Instead, it’s just a different form factor for people who want the iPad (experience) in a more portable size (but not so small as iPod touch).
It’s hard to compare the iPad mini to the Nexus 7 by price, because that really doesn’t mean anything. If you want what the iPad ecosystem can give you it doesn’t matter how cheap the Nexus 7 or Kindle Fire is because you can’t get that with those devices.
If you want what the Android ecosystem can give you then the price of the iPad mini is immaterial, too.
For me, having used both (although less Android, admittedly), I choose iPad for what it allows me to do. And if I need another iPad, now I have the choice of a smaller, more totable version, at a reduced price.