Why did Apple launch the iPad 4 now?

“Apple’s release of another new iPad this year has many scratching their heads,” Lance Whitney reports for CNET. “But Morgan Stanley’s Katy Huberty sees method behind the madness.”

“First, the 3rd-generation iPad, which the analyst calls a ‘stale product,’ could have seen its sales cannibalized by the cheaper iPad Mini,” Whitney reports. “Second, sales for the 3rd-gen iPad were not as high as expected, which Huberty blamed on limited improvements over the iPad 2. Adding the A6 chip to the iPad 4 doubles the new tablet’s performance, which at least ‘partially addresses that issue.'”

MacDailyNews Take: Limited improvements? Anybody who’s even glanced at them, much less owned both the iPad 2 and the iPad with Retina display (3rd gen), understands how stupid that sounds.

Whitney reports, “And finally, Apple may have relied on experience in pushing out a new iPad. The company refreshed the original iPod when it released smaller versions, which the analyst says ‘accelerated growth.'”

More reasons in the full article here.

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

53 Comments

    1. I agree. they wanted this transition over and done with unstressed of staggering ing it out. Plus, an incentive to buy the more expensive model and limit self cannibalization. I think it was a smart move.
      Now the question of when it be refresheshed. Next October?

      1. My plan for iPads was the same as iPhone, buy every other model. I planned to get the 7th gen iPhone in the fall of 2013 and the 5th gen iPad in spring 2014. I’ll still buy an iPad in 2014 but I don’t know what generation it’ll be or when (spring vs fall).

      2. I think it has more to do with consolidating the “staggered” release of iOS hardware. ( and helps with software also ).
        What would it be like it Apple updated the HW specs of the 11 inch MacBook Air, then waited 6 months to update the 13 inch Air? The 11 easily out performing the 13? No, No, No. Not Pretty.
        Helps with the ordering/supply of parts too. The top cpu slides down to the next device without to much supply chain disruption. And it happens only once a year. Mo Money.

  1. Umm. Christmas season? Releasing new items now will get peoples attention for the Christmas shopping season.

    I expect part of the reason is that there will be new models from android being release this year. Adding the A6 now makes it much harder for them to compete and makes it harder for them release better speced devices before christmas.

  2. i bet the A6X will be a quad core graphics GPU which means the iphone A6 CPU’s are manufacturing rejects

    you rarely get a perfect CPU in production and manufacturers are always disabling parts of the CPU/GPU and selling it as a lower end model.

    apple is a master at it and I bet it just took a while for A6 yields to ramp up to where they can ship an ipad 4. meanwhile the GPU’s with only 3 usable cores are enough to run the iphone’s smaller screen

    1. you are thinking of the previous case with AppleTv
      where Apple used rejected processors in a product that did not require the full brut power of the A4.

      I would love to see Apple LEVEL the products all to have the same processor but option on number of cores.

      For Apple to offer in the same year the line of products like this – Example:

      iPhone with a A7 (quad or dual)
      iPad with A7 (quad or dual)
      AppleTv with a A7 also (quad or dual)
      iPadMini with a A7 also (quad or dual)

  3. “Limited improvement”???!!!

    Yeah,  only improved the one most important part of a tablet, the screen, so that it renders print quality images and text. Yep, that’s “limited”.

  4. Were there sam$ung parts in the iPad third gen? If so, I don’t blame them for dropping the third gen immediately. With sam$ung talking about suddenly cancelling contracts with Apple, it would make sense.

  5. I believe Apple is converging the releases into two camps and placing them before the holidays. I bet no new products until the end of 2013.

    Music/Entertainment and Computers. iMacs, MacBooks, Airs, and iPads are computers. iPods, TV, and iPhone are entertainment. iPhone is an iPod touch with a phone.

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