Ten Million iPads a Year? Guess Again!

By  |  Tuesday, January 18, 2011 at 4:30 pm

Back when we didn’t know for sure if the iPad really existed, there was a rumor that Apple expected to sell ten million of them in the tablet’s first full year on the market. Many observers were skeptical. Me, I didn’t take a stance–I just said that it was hard for outsiders to crunch Apple’s numbers, and I had fun looking back at sales figures for past Apple products. (Total Apple I sales: about 200 units, in an era when that wasn’t bad.)

Well, Apple released its quarterly financials today, and we now know the ten-million-iPads-a-year rumor was off. After nine months, Apple had already sold 14.8 million tablets. Not bad for a product that was supposed to be an embarrassing flop. (The lesson, as always: It’s pointless to analyze anything based on an utter absence of facts…and at least as pointless to read such analysis.)


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2 Comments For This Post

  1. tom b Says:

    The iPad fills a market niche: people who want a simple, inexpensive device for basic, portable computing. This is the niche the "net book" was TRYING to fill, albeit poorly, as netbooks were cheaply made, slow, and less amenable to one-handed (standing in line, etc) quick surfing.

    I expected the iPad to succeed, and was right. I also expected Android phones to gone by now– and I haven't called that one correctly, but with the iPhone on VZ now, I think this year will see a huge Android retreat. In anticipation of this Motorola has already dumped its mobility unit.

  2. David Says:

    Well, Android is world-wide, so I don't expect a world-wide retreat. I think that there are enough cheapies and broke people to jump on BOGO sales to keep US sales from retreating, but I suspect you'll see flat sales and difference will be iPhone.

    I always thought the analyst and "big iPod touch" people were missing the boat, but had no clue about numbers. I'll admit to initial disappointment about the camera until I saw what I looked like with a camera too close to my face.

    I would have liked more ram and should have gotten a larger storage model(16gb), but I had a pretty good feeling after I saw the unveiling.

    The problem with the pundits is simply they are too close to the problem and think about it in terms of line items. Apple is good at "greater than the sum of its parts."