Apple are planning to release a smaller iPad to hit retail stores during the third quarter of 2012, according to a report. Chinese portal NetEase claims that Apple have ordered 6 million 7-inch versions of the iPad tablet to be produced at its Foxconn and Pegatron plants. The news will be deemed somewhat controversial as Apple's late co-founder Steve Jobs was said to have been against his company developing smaller tablet versions of the iPad. Apple however aren't wanting to miss out on the opportunity of getting into the more compact slate market after the success of Amazon's rival Kindle Fire which retails on the low end of the market. Meanwhile Google CEO Larry Page fuelled rumours last week that the search engine giant are also planning to rival the Kindle Fire with a new tablet and publicly stating that he was "very excited" about the budget tablet market. Having only released the new iPad worldwide last month which boosted sales to help the company's market value exceed $600 billion for the first time in history, Apple are looking to keep the momentum going and the new tablet could be priced at around £150 to £200. source - cnetWould you like to write about Apple and technology on WhatCulture? Get in touch today to become a contributor.