There have been various reports and leaks over recent months suggesting that Apple will announce a new 'iPad Mini' later this year, potentially featuring a 7.85-inch display, compared to the original iPad's 9.7-inch screen.
9to5Mac reports its sources as saying that the new Apple product should be viewed as a "big iPod Touch" as its side bezels in portrait will be thinner than the iPad to maximise the available screen space, as with the touchscreen iPod.
The unnamed insiders also say that the iPad Mini will feature a microphone on its rear, backing up previous reports.
9to5Mac notes that using the iPod Touch design "makes a lot of sense" as it would ensure the iPad Mini can fit in a large pocket or bag, while still offering a big enough screen for watching videos, playing games or browsing the web.
Google's Nexus 7 - the seven-inch screen tablet that would be one of the iPad Mini's biggest competitors - also has smaller side bezels than the original iPad.
It is expected that users would hold the iPad Mini from the back, as they do with the iPod Touch and the Nexus 7. When in landscape mode, the user would then hold the device by the larger bezels at the top and bottom.
9to5Mac believes that the iPad Mini will have a front-facing camera for video conferencing, the same as the Nexus 7. However, it notes that other leaked shells have suggested that it could have both front and back cameras.
Another scenario entirely could involve Apple not including a camera in the device at all in order to get the price down to around $200 (£127) for the base WiFi-only model.
This would put the product in a strong position to compete against the Nexus 7, which costs £159 for its 8GB model, and the Kindle Fire, Amazon's 7-inch slate that costs around £127 for the entry version but is only available in the US.
As only a few supposed parts of the iPad Mini have leaked so far in the tech press, it is thought that production has not yet got under way in earnest, and so the device could not be part of the expected September 12 launch of the new iPhone.
Apple may instead look to give the iPad Mini its own launch event possibly at the end of October or even in early November, and then get the product on sale in key markets before the Christmas shopping season.
9to5Mac also says that if Apple can get the price of the tablet down to below $200, it could prove one of the firm's most successful ever products.
The site notes: "At $299, Apple will sell a cargo ship full of these. If they can get the price down to $200, we might be talking about the biggest product launch in Apple's history."
> Apple's Steve Jobs was open to iPad Mini project