SAN JOSE, Calif. -- Apple introduced a smaller iPad, as expected, but also updated its full-sized one. It also unveiled new Mac computers, including a 13-inch version of a MacBook Pro with sharper, "Retina" display.
With a screen measuring 7.9 inches on the diagonal, the iPad Mini is about half the size of the regular iPad. It's slightly larger than the 7-inch tablets from Amazon.com Inc. and Google Inc. The regular iPad is 9.7 inches.
Advance orders for the iPad Mini and the new full-sized iPad will begin Friday. They will be available for sale Nov. 2.
The $329 price puts the Mini between the 2011 full-sized iPad model at $399 and the 4-inch iPod Touch at $199. By contrast, Amazon.com Inc.'s Kindle Fire starts at $159, and Google Inc.'s Nexus 7 at $199. Both have 7-inch screens.
There's also a version that will be capable of using cellular networks. That will go on sale two weeks later. That's a feature the cheaper, 7-inch tablets don't have.
The event at the California Theatre comes a few days before Microsoft Corp. starts selling a new version of its Windows operating system, one designed to work well on both traditional computers and tablets. Microsoft is also releasing its own tablet, the Surface, on Friday. It will be slightly larger than the full-sized iPad.
Apple has sold more than 100 million iPads since their debut in April 2010. Although Apple dominates the worldwide tablet market with 70 percent of shipments in the second quarter, according to IHS iSuppli, Amazon and Google have been able to make in-roads with the smaller alternatives. A smaller iPad from Apple Inc. could help the company cement its dominance.