“When the Cupertino company reports fiscal 3Q17 earnings, on August 1st after the bell, I’ll be asking myself: will iPads matter again?” D.M. Martins writes for Seeking Alpha. “In March of this year, Apple made a one-of-a-kind product refresh announcement that many analysts seem to have brushed off.”

“The company introduced an inexpensive 9.7-inch iPad at the $329 price point (36% cheaper than the most inexpensive iPad ever marketed until then),” Martins writes. “The new iPad was released on March 24th, just one week before the end of fiscal 2Q17 and too late to have made much of an impact on Apple’s P&L that quarter.”

“With plenty of skepticism about the iPad still in the air but a full quarter of new product sales in the bag, I wonder if fiscal 3Q17 will bring in good news for Apple’s tablet business,” Martins writes. “The answer should come not only in the form of units sold, but could potentially be reflected in better numbers for Apple’s Services.”

Read more in the full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: $329 is the magic number. Not as magic as $299 would have been (or will be eventually), but magic nonetheless.

At these prices, Apple will move more units. iPad unit sales are finally poised to return to growth! — MacDailyNews, March 21, 2017

Apple to release Q317 earnings, webcast live conference call on August 1st – July 6, 2017
Wired reviews Apple’s new iPad: Offers plenty for just $329 – May 8, 2017
The Daily Express reviews Apple’s new iPad: ‘World’s greatest tablet just got more affordable’ – April 22, 2017
Macworld reviews iPad (2017): With a stripped-down iPad for $329, you may not need to go pro – April 10, 2017
Ars Technica reviews Apple’s $329 iPad: ‘For people who have never upgraded’ – April 6, 2017
It’s just plain old iPad, and it’s cheap – starting at just $329! – April 3, 2017

Apple’s new iPad is actually more than ‘just’ an iPad Air – March 30, 2017
Apple unveils new 9.7-inch iPad starting at new low price of just $329 – March 21, 2017