Companies complain of iPad 2 shortages

“European companies, including at least one Swiss multinational, are being forced to delay a move to paperless board meetings because of the shortage of Apple’s recently launched iPad 2 tablet device,” Paul Taylor reports for the Financial Times.

“Company secretaries in Europe and elsewhere quickly embraced the original iPad and a specialised iPad app called Boardbooks from Diligent, a New Zealand-based software developer, as a money and time-saving alternative to sending out bulky packages of board papers to directors each month,” Taylor reports. “Many companies, however, had been waiting for the upgraded iPad 2, which became available in Europe on March 25 in limited quantities, before making the switch.”

Taylor reports, “Now, with Apple restricting the purchase of iPad 2 devices to two per customer because of component and product shortages, some companies have had to put their iPad plans on hold.”

Read more in the full article here.

37 Comments

    1. Dude, give it up.

      Nothing about the iPad2 was ‘rushed to market’ It didn’t rush out to beat competitors, there are none. It wasn’t rushed out without a good supply of units, there were. They just got sold due to demand.

      Regardless of the 65Billion cash horde, it would be completely irresponsible of Apple to delay shipping until 15 Billion iPad2s had been produced. Even if they had done that, and they still sold out you would probably still be there beating your dead horse soapbox about how they were ‘rushed to market’. Seriously, time to give it up and find something new to kvetch about

      1. I’m sure this dude is beating more than just his dead horse. I love to hear these people say that Apple should have waited to stockpile 15 million iPad 2s so that everyone would get one the first day of sales. How stupid are these people?

        Apple is practically the only tablet maker and yet are being claimed to make consumers suffer because they’re forcing them to stand on line and come up empty-handed. It’s like Apple is totally to blame because the iPad 2 sold out. Why not blame Foxconn for not being able to manufacture five million iPad 2s a week or how about blaming touch panel suppliers for only being able to get 70% yields. It’s easier to blame Apple for creating the whole friggin’ tablet resurrection.

        A consumer didn’t get an iPad 2 to play with and now their out to tar and feather Steve. Some knuckleheaded twits can be amazingly, impossibly stupid when it comes to assigning blame. If 40 million consumers truly want iPad 2s even if Foxconn can produce 5 million a month, somebody, somewhere is going to have to wait to get one. If even a dozen of those consumers complain they can’t get an iPad 2, someone will say that Apple screwed up somewhere.

    2. Dear MacBill:

      Congratulations for kicking up such a debate from your fourteen word sentence.

      However, for clarity, please can you provide some evidence in support of the words:

      “when Apple rushes products to market”

      Specifically, how it applies to the iPad2 launch?

      Do you perhaps have some inside knowledge of what Jobs, Cook, Ive, Schiller, Forstall et al are thinking that we’re obviously not privy to?

      I look forward to reviewing your evidence…

  1. This is typical of the worst aspect of Apple.

    A completely dysfunctional understanding of how to kick a ball into an open net.

    I love the company dearly (God knows, I’m surrounded by their products), but ensuring that you display the capability to deliver more than “ones or twos” is exactly why the corporate marketplace really left Apple back in the days of Sculley and Spindler because, even now, there will some IT type saying “this is why you buy Windows-based gear, because there are multiple sources”.

    Take a week of production and divert it to corporate early-adopters. Then carry on with personal consumers. It’s not difficult, it’s just a mindset of understanding the value of not upsetting the CEO of a billion-dollar corporation who may spend $10-50 million a year on IT.

    1. Obviously you really don’t understand Apple. The company would never have grown it’s margins if it focused on earning Corporate scraps. Also nothing Microsoft ever did for the PC world ever saved corporate America any money. Apple discovered very early on that supporting the corporate world cost more per dollar and diverts your focus from making insanely great product. Micro Soft had the luxury of never having to actually develop the hardware for any of the PC’s its software ran on and cost companies billions of dollars over the decades by having to have IT staffs to support cheaply made PC running buggy software with tons of legacy code. SO you think Apple should drop trou and bend over for a few corporate IT geeks that never supported their business model and perpetually ridiculed their equipment? You’re nutz….Nutz I tell ya. The billion dollar corporation that may spend $10 to $50 million a year on IT will never spend that much on IPads anyway so why have Apple’s loyal supporting customer base suffer. They can invest in buggy Playbooks or Xooms or Galaxies with no significant supporting echosphere . Apple’s loyal customer base can’t afford to do that. If the productivity gains afforded by the purchase of a few IPads are so significant, the corporate IT drones can afford to wait a few months while they buy a developers kit (if they haven’t already) and create their own software. They can also offer a bounty on used first gen IPads or get on Ebay or Craigslist like everybody else who can’t seem to wait.

      1. Obviously you really don’t understand Apple.

        Actually, I’ve been using Macs since 1987 and I’ve followed the company faithfully and sat through numerous briefings, so you can keep your faint air of condescension to yourself.

        Nobody is saying that Apple would be the company it is now had it relied on paper-thin margins (although the margins afforded to the resellers who stuck with Apple through its worst days are indeed paper-thin to the point of transparency).

        However, from a marketing perspective, Apple’s cack-handed inability to recognise that corporates shouldn’t have to fight with consumers for stock means that they waste the potential to gain mindshare in an environment that may not mean anything to you, but means a lot to developers of high-end products like SAP, Oracle or Documentum.

        If Apple could pull its collective head out of its ass on this one topic and stop treating enterprise customers as a necessary evil, it could actually hammer several more nails in Ballmer’s coffin. But – if it doesn’t – it risks appearing like a cottage industry that can’t be relied upon to deliver when the demand is there.

        Also, let’s be clear.

        The only reason there is a backlog is because Apple changed the product.

        And the fact that Apple never gave corporates a roadmap of what it was intending to do was another reason it lost whatever presence it had in the corporate market in the mid-Nineties with companies like BP, Cable & Wireless and another whose name slips my mind (might have been FedEx).

        And the reason I know this is because I tried to act as a go-between for one of those rare corporate customers and Apple. And – by the end of the process (in around 1994) – I came to the conclusion that trying to persuade Apple to treat a company that was larger and far more valuable than them with any degree of courtesy or respect was a waste of time.

        Apple got a break bringing Jobs back. And then got luckier on the iPod. Which then brought us the iPhone.

        If none of those things would have happened. Apple would have followed Silicon Graphics into obscurity as a plucky pioneer that failed.

    2. OK, Apple has never, ever catered to the whims and demands of Enterprise. They have focused solely on the end user consumer.

      Look what that has accomplished for them, its made them the most valuable tech company in the world. Just because Enterprise is now begging to get Apple products doesn’t mean Apple should change their rules and focus. Tech companies that cater to Enterprise are all dying with zero growth, zero margins, and stagnate stock. Yep, bending over for Enterprise has done wonders for Dell, and even MS can’t maintain the windows empire through Enterprise.

      Don’t change a thing Apple.

    3. What? Nobody has expected how well iPad will be received, even Steve was surprised, this is an unfortunate side of success.
      I am happy to see Apple having problems with supplying the product rather than with lack of demand

    4. Apple is only one company against a horde of 100 odd companies from Android. So if you think that Apple should stockpile 15 million iPads 2s at one go, you are just showing complete ignorance about the dynamics of demand and supply and its attendant problems of warehousing. Talk is cheap.

  2. Want some cheese with that whine?

    Apple manages their supply line in a very clever manner, it saves them money, and generates headlines.

    That said, show me a hot product that isn’t hard to find when it is flying off the shelves. Happens every Christmas doesn’t it?

  3. Wow, a lot of whinging going on here. The iPad 2 wasn’t even expected to ship until early April. It’s only April 4th now. Let’s focus on the fact that Apple has already shipped hundreds of thousands of Apple 2’s instead of the fact that Apple hasn’t been able been able to meet the overwhelming demand for its product.

    The iPad 2 became available in Europe on March 25th. If a company’s plans to upgrade have been delayed, those delays have been by a matter of days, not months or years. Companies often move very slowly and a couple of days’ delay is nothing to them. Don’t panic. Take a deep breath and a couple of chill pills. Making these companies wait a couple of days for the world’s hottest selling product will not kill them and it will not kill Apple.

    1. Placed a deposit on two iPads with Best Buy on the 12 of March. Still waiting to hear from them. I don’t think they have gotten a second shipment since the initial release. That is 3 weeks with out inventory. This is only my own little window of experience. We will see if it turns in to a moths affair. The, Apple really has a problem.

  4. Basically they’re ticked at not being treated special. Apple treats everyone the same, whether it’s a multinational corporation, or some average person in their store. Maybe not the best business decision, but admirable all the same.

  5. Oh, Microsoft say the iPad will not last Apple is towing the computer industry full speed while they are kicking, screaming, and totally disorientated.

    While a few executives complain that they will not be able to get an iPad. Wow, how things have changed in the boardroom!

    I WANT my Apple product! NOW!

    Zen guys!

  6. Is today’s Apple showing signs of the “old Apple”?

    Before Jobs’ return, Apple would often introduce a product that would prove highly popular but would be in immediate short supply, leading to frustrated would-be buyers and deserved criticism. The iPad2 shortages mirrors those bad times (though recent part shortages are not under Apple’s control).

    IMO, Apple also let one get away in missing the Kinect boat, having first chance at it only to lose it (supposedly) due to it’s “pain in the ass” secretive nature, pissing off the developers enough to send them elsewhere (ie, MS).

    Today, it’s reported that Google has reached agreement with bankrupt Nortel, paying $900 mil for it’s patents. Even without knowing the full patent portfolio, it would seem Apple should have built it’s war chest with many of Nortel’s IP.

    I hope this isn’t a trend.

    1. I tried Kinect at BBY. Much prefer the Wii. Another example of MSFT using someone else’s idea rather than creating it in house. Msft has sold a lot of Kinects, but mostly I expect to the large installed base of Xbox users – just like Nintindo will likely sell a lot of 3DS’s mostly to prior DS owners. Apple has sold a sh*t load of iPhone’s and iPads to customers new to Apple. The rapid year over year growth has another year or so to go. The replacement cycle can keep it going for another couple of years, albeit at a reduced pace. As for Kinect, I think the upgrade cycle will last through next Christmas and t then slow dramatically. Nothing new to the X-box to make uses want/need to buy a new system. IMHO Msft erred in Making KInect compatible with the installed base – needed to create a need to upgrade the whole system.

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