The new iPad mini with Retina display is still quite hard to find and generally only available through Apple's online store.
However, in a sign that the rollout of the product may be expanding in time for the Black Friday holiday shopping frenzy, an analyst reports that the device can now be found for purchase in some New York City Apple stores.
"Three weeks after the iPad Air became available at Apple Retail Stores, the iPad mini with Retina Display has made its way to a few Apple Retail Stores in NYC for walk-in customers, possibly portending a wider rollout in the U.S. and around the world over the next week," wrote Cantor Fitzgerald analyst Brian White in a note to clients Friday.
Even before Apple unveiled the new version of the iPad mini with the higher-resolution display last month, analysts had expected it would be in short supply this holiday season. The reason: It would be hard to find enough Retina displays to meet demand.
Apple began taking online orders of the iPad mini Retina earlier this month for pickups available in Apple stores. Analysts had been hoping it might become more widely available starting Friday, but that apparently won't be the case.
White told clients he's hoping to see greater availability by Monday so there's more on hand for the big holiday shopping weekend ahead.
"As of late last night, the Fifth Avenue Apple Store received shipments for in-store pickup of the iPad mini with Retina Display and certain other NYC stores (Upper West Side, 14th Street) received shipments this morning; which we believe is an early indicator that other stores around the country (and world) will start to receive shipments over the next week," White wrote. "We have yet to find stores outside of NYC that are offering the iPad mini with Retina Display for walk-in customers, although there could be a few."
The iPad Air that went on sale earlier this month appears to be off to a strong start, and is still widely available. However, over the past year the mini has become the more popular choice of the two sizes, and analysts are hoping the new version with the Retina screen will drive a strong holiday season for Apple.