HP single-handedly destroys non-iPad tablet market

“After less than two months on sale, HP has pulled the plug on the TouchPad tablet and is so desperate to get rid of them that it is having a firesale, selling the 16GB TouchPad for $99 and the 32GB model for $149. But not only has HP killed the TouchPad, it has also single-handedly destroyed the entire non-iPad tablet market,” Adrian Kingsley-Hughes writes for ZDNet.

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“People are buying the iPad not because it’s a tablet, but because it is an iPad,” Kingsley-Hughes writes. “Apple has NOT carved out a market for tablets, Apple carved out a market for the iPad. Think about it: When Apple released the iPod back in 2001, did this create an enormous market for media players? No. It created an enormous market for the iPod.”

Read more in the full article here.

[Thanks to MacDailyNews Reader “GetMeOnTop” for the heads up.]


    1. He certainly has a point… I don’t think the iPad will have anywhere near the marketshare the iPod did because it seems like there is more (and better) competition this time around but if we end up seeing some more high profile tablets come to market and flop like the Touchpad did, I suppose anything is possible.

      1. What are you talking about?!? The iPod was released after several high-profile and heavily marketed mp3 players were already on the market – Sony, Creative, etc. The reason the iPod won was because it was the best media player.

        There have been Windows-based tablets for a decade, only most people didn’t consider them because they were expensive and sucked.

        This guy is wrong. Apple has redefined the market for a tablet. The problem isn’t the tablet market, it’s the players in the market. There simply hasn’t been a tablet produced that can come close to the iPad, and that’s why the iPad dominates and will continue to dominate, and will have a greater share of the market than the iPod did.

        1. NO, it won because it had the best management software and an easy to use store. It was NOT the best mp3 player, there were players that had better sound, more supported formats, etc. They were sunk by their companies not getting the end-to-end ecosystem consumers were looking for. APple legitimized and made mp3’s easy to find, buy and enjoy. That is how they won.

      2. Not true, they had better competition in MP3 players than in the tablet space. There is nothing even CLOSE to ipad in performance, let alone the IOS ecosystem. There were plenty of good MP3 players, they simply lacked the iTunes ecosystem and the legitimacy it brought to MP3’s.

    1. The point is now that consumers have had a taste at $99, they’ll never pay much more than that for any pretend iPad. So the the market for the Android pretenders was indeed just destroyed by HP. That’s all this firesale really accomplished and once again Apple is the #1 beneficiary from it.

      1. I think the bigger point is that if you were thinking of getting a fake iPad, you will think twice about that manufacturer surviving. Why take a chance, just get a iPad.

        1. Or, with the Touch Pad basically given away, the buyers who would have purchased a non iPad just bought one : a Touch Pad. So that segment of the market is gone or at least decimated. Buyers who are going to buy an iPad are still there.

  1. “When Apple released the iPod back in 2001, did this create an enormous market for media players? No. It created an enormous market for the iPod.”

    Same situation for iPad.

    ‘The End’ for “iPad killers”.

  2. HP failed in learning how to integrate their new OS with hardware. From what I’ve read the OS team were given hardware to get the software to run on. No design and optimization. No wonder it sucked.

    HPs PC efforts failed again because they went for market share. Every PC maker who has tried this has failed in the end. Compaq, Dell and now HP.

    In both instances HP have tried to do product development on the cheap and not made money as a result.

    1. This makes sense if you think about the speed with which all iPad “competitors” had to rush their products to market. Apple spent years secretly developing the concept and how to make the software integrate properly, and what hardware was needed. They even developed their own chip. But the fakers were thrown in at the deep end – “we have to build one of these things, and get it to market fast!” So the hardware and software teams will have been working flat out on their own part of the project, without time to look at each other, let alone talk.

      So I’m not sure if HP failed solely because they tried to do it on the cheap. They had to do it in a rush, hampered by the added pressure of price constraints.

  3. So true.

    The few consumers who wanted a non-Apple tablet will now buy the super cheap TouchPad, totally drying up the market for Android tablets for a few critical months at least.

    And anyone on the fence will now likely go for an iPad, simply to make sure they don’t get dead-ended (HP’s pulling of the plug proves that any brand could realistically disappear overnight).

  4. You fanbois are too funny….

    HP did a really smart move, at $99 they dumped their whole inventory, there are no more Touchpads to buy. The demand was there, it sold out in a matter of minutes in most places.

    What they did is that they have now established a large (750,000 +) unit web os base. Watch HP now sell the web os to samsung or HTC for several billions, easily recapturing the loss for selling the units so cheap…….

    1. I think you are the one with the funny bone….did you forget that HP tested web OS on the iPad and found that it ran 2 X faster on the iPad but still not faster than an iPad with iOS? What does that mean you might ask? It means Apple knows how to build HW tightly coupled with the SW. That’s why HP surrendered.

    2. HP had to discount TouchPad by 80% to move it out of inventory. You think Samsung or HTC wants that type of “demand”?

      HP probably produced at most half a million TouchPads. That’s not much of a “user base.” Apple sold 9 million iPads in just the last completed quarter (and they were sold at full retail price).

    3. Judging from the verdicts of the techies and mad collectors who’ve actually bought one for $99, it won’t do the OS much good. They all seem rather unimpressed with the thing, as I was with my EeePC.

  5. I’ve written before that the smart manufacturers will prove to be the ones that stay out of trying to rival Apple’s iPad.

    Obviously, rivals seeing how much money Apple are making from iPads would like a slice of the action, but there are formidable challenges for any manufacturer attempting this and most will be destined to lose money – some will lose money on a colossal scale, possibly to such an extent that their future is threatened.

    There are two ways to compete. One is to match or surpass the iPad at a similar or lower price. The other is to create a product that is inferior, but still good enough to sell in large numbers to less demanding customers at a low price.

    Matching iPads at a comparable price seems to be a tall order. I don’t see any manufacturer now being in a position to do that. The window of opportunity has long passed.

    I’ve always felt that creating a cheap but inferior product is slightly less risky, even though there will be many others attempting to do the same, but there is now a new problem. Those who tried to create a high quality alternative to iPads have failed and are now selling the unsold products at significantly below cost ( or even giving them away with other products ).

    Who would buy a crappy tablet when a decent, but unsuccessful alternative is currently being sold off for peanuts ?

  6. HP’s message to potential customers of non-iPad tablets – After a new product is released, just wait a few weeks. The price will be massively discounted, to at least 50% off retail, maybe even 80% off retail. You’d be a fool to buy it right away.

    Apple’s ongoing message to its potential customers (of any Apple product) – Don’t wait for discounts, because they are not coming. The only time we sell below original price is during the transition to the new model, and if you waited that long, you probably want the new model (not the old model). So… you might as well buy it as soon as it is released.

    Result: Apple always gets high demand and sales upon release. The competition gets low initial demand and sales, until the inevitable desperation fire sale.

  7. It’s simple to understand, Apple doesn’t build gadgets. Apple builds consumer devices that serve a purpose. Years ago, they recognized an opportunity to brand what was then generic music players, and called in an IPod, and subsequently built an entire ecosystem around it.

    Today, after Sony, MS, and others failed to create a viable ‘tablet’, Apple saw an opportunity, built their own, and put a brand around it and called it an iPad.

    It’s not about tech specs. Clothing manufacturers don’t put more zippers, buttons, or stitches on clothes to make people rush out and buy. No, they put fancy names with clever marketing and models, and the kids rush to wear the latest name-branded items.

    It’s about the brand, and obviously, in Apple’s case, clearly devices that are superior in every way. Brand, ecosystem, ‘got to have it’ mentality. Every other tech company is just trying to match feature for feature. That doesn’t cut it in today’s world; it’s about brand, exposure, status, etc. Remember when ‘Dude, you’re gettin’ a Dell’ was extremely successful for Dell?? That was brand marketing and done extremely well…..until that kid got caught in some scandal and killed it all.

    Make a better product, make it so desirable everyone has to have it, and you’ll be successful. How hard can it be? Just ask HP. 😉

    1. The first part of your response is correct, however if you are saying that Apple Marketing is responsible for their success, then you are sadly mistaken. It is about the product and user experience. Plain and simple. No one is rushing to buy it because it has a fancy label or clever marketing. This kind of thinking is exactly why HP and all the rest have failed. Russel Brand as the touchpad spokesman was funny and all, but in the end it is the product design, build quality and user experience that killled it. IT IS NOT ABOUT STATUS… or LOGO.. or COLOR for chrstmas sake. ITS NOT ABOUT MARKETING!!!! Its about having a product that WORKS WELL! When will you people stop spouting this marketing crap? ITS ABOUT THE PRODUCT!

  8. I disagree. I think this will adversely impact iPad as well. Every 9 tablets that are sold are iPads. It will HAVE to impact iPad sales one way or another. Not to the degree the iPad copicats but still there will be a negative impact.

    Question is how much inventory HP dump over the last few days?

    1. Not really. Most of the people who bought one for $99 (or $149) were not going to buy an iPad for $499 (or higher). Also, Apple sold 9 million iPads during the last completed quarter. At most, HP probably produced half a million TouchPads. The effect on reducing potential iPad customers is negligible, even if ALL the people who bought an TouchPad, would have purchased an iPad (at five times the cost) instead. And I seriously doubt that even 10% of those TouchPad customers were planning to buy an iPad during the next year.

      However, the rest of the market (non-iPad tablets) is much smaller. The impact of half-a-million units sold at extreme fire sale prices will be much greater. Apple has a reputation for NOT offering discounts (until a product becomes “last year’s model”). The competition has a reputation for lowering the price (and doing “two-for-one” deals) after low initial sales; just wait a few weeks and the price will come down (is the expectation). HP’s move certainly does not help,

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