“The iPad is big in my house. I use one (Pro), my wife uses one (Air 2), my son uses one (Mini 2). Suffice it to say that we see the appeal,” jason Snell writes for Macworld. “But at some point, even the biggest boosters of the iPad have to admit that something’s wrong. With iPad sales down year-over-year for 10 out of the last 11 quarters, it’s safe to say that this is more than a blip.”
“Many observers have been waiting for a while now for the iPad to find its level — for sales to flatten back out and reveal what size Apple’s iPad business will really be going forward,” Snell writes. “It’s clear that the heady days where Apple sold 80 million iPads in a year are gone, and won’t be coming back for quite a while. But as sales continue to decline, it’s worth asking when it will all stop.”
“At this point, Apple’s selling iPads at a rate of approximately 48 million iPads per year — roughly the rate it was selling them in 2011, at the very start of the iPad’s lifespan, just before iPad sales kicked into gear,” Snell writes. “So is this the bottom? Or will it get worse before it gets better?”
Read more in the full article – recommended – here.
MacDailyNews Take: You cannot have a Christmas quarter without a new iPad Air model unless you’re incompetent, don’t care about iPad sales, or because there were extenuating circumstances. We hope the latter is the case here, because the first two possibilities are just too awful to consider.
Here’s the thing: The iPad saturated its addressable market so quickly and the iPads are so well made and last so damn long that unless Apple provides a really compelling reason to upgrade, most people are just not upgrading yet. We handed off our original iPads to relatives a couple years ago and they’re still being used! Yes, they lack sensors to support many modern iPad games, but they are still in use. We also have immediate family members still using perfectly working iPad 2, iPad 3, and older iPad Air and mini models. The obsolescence cycle for iPad rivals that of the Mac. It’s very long.
The iPad is not a niche product. It had unprecedented uptake and the devices have such long, useful lives that the replacement cycle still hasn’t really kicked in. When it does — and when the macroeconomy improves to the point where users can consider adding the joys of iPad to their computing lives — then we’ll see iPad unit sales growth again. In the meantime, Apple should redouble their efforts at improving iPad – adding Apple Pencil, Smart Connector, and multi-user support (to mention just three things) that will make the iPad even more appealing to buyers.