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It's not quite as useful as the Apple Store inventory scraper Cupertino just shut down, but if you're in the market for an iPad mini with Retina Display, a web tool lurking secretly within Seaturtle.org might just do the trick.
AppleInsider reported Wednesday that Seaturtle.org appears to be hosting a web-based inventory snapshot tool for the new iPad mini with Retina Display, similar to the one Apple just had shut down.
Seaturtle.org's iDevice Availability Notifier isn't quite as slick as the inventory tracking scraper which allowed shoppers to enter their ZIP code and see which Apple retail stores have stock on which models. Instead, the new tool shows all U.S. stores in one giant grid, which may be only slightly better than manually searching for the Personal Pickup option on Apple's website.
"Availability of new iPad minis at US Apple Stores based on our latest checks," the Seaturtle.org website explains. "The number in each grid cell is minutes since that iPad mini/Apple Store combination was last checked. You can click on the cell contents to check current status. Green means it was available at the last check, red means it was not. White means we have not checked that combination (i.e. no one has requested a check of that combination)."
The report notes that, while the data appears to be sporadic, what's there does appear to be accurate when compared with Apple's online store. It probably doesn't take a genius (Apple or otherwise) to see how this movie is going to end, though: Cupertino's legal eagles will eventually get wind of the website and make those sea turtles go bye-bye, so use it while it's here, folks.
Follow this article’s author, J.R. Bookwalter on Twitter