Apple made the 10.5-inch iPad Air so capable it could hurt iPad Pro and Macbook sales

“With the amount of press surrounding Apple’s services business, some analysts seem to be forgetting that today, right now, the company gets 87% of its revenue from products,” Michael Henage writes for The Motley Fool. “In the future, services may outstrip products, but products will still be a gateway.”

“One product that doesn’t seem to get much press is the company’s iPad business. With the iPhone business on shaky ground, Apple really can’t afford for its iPad or Mac business to struggle as well,” Henage writes. “Last quarter, iPad and Mac made up just over 19% of Apple’s total revenue. Unfortunately, Apple’s most recent iPad announcements could spell trouble for both businesses.”

MacDailyNews Take: As per the “shaky ground” of Apple’s iPhone business, some facts: Apple sold 217.72 million iPhones in 2018, up from 216.76 million in 2017, and up from 211.88 million in 2016.

“According to Frost & Sullivan, the tablet market will grow at a compound annual growth rate of 1.6% through the year 2024. Though this doesn’t sound like fast growth, by 2024, it would mean 187 million units worldwide,” Henage writes. “Assuming that iOS continues to hold its 74% worldwide market share, by 2024, the company would sell about 138 million of these devices. To give investors an idea of what this growth would look like, during 2018, the company sold roughly 43 million tablets.”

The complete iPad lineup now includes Apple Pencil support, best-in-class performance, advanced displays and all-day battery life.
The complete iPad lineup now includes Apple Pencil support, best-in-class performance, advanced displays and all-day battery life.

“Buyers who are faced with either the iPad Air or one of the iPad Pro models have a relatively simple choice. For $300 to $500 more, they can get a Pro device with a faster processor and a somewhat better screen to form factor, or they can just get the iPad Air. In short, the iPad Air is such a good device, with such impressive specs, that it will likely make buyers wonder why they would waste $300 or more on an iPad Pro,” Henage writes. “In addition, if users are considering a MacBook 12”, the pricing between the iPad Air becomes astoundingly challenging. The MacBook is $1,299 to start and has a screen with 226 pixels per inch (PPI). The device weighs 2 pounds and comes with 256 GB of storage. Instead of spending $1,299, a buyer could opt for an iPad Air with the Smart Keyboard. A 256 GB iPad Air costs $649, the Smart Keyboard runs $159 for a total cost of $808.”

Read more in the full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: While there are certainly a huge number of MacBook buyers who only really use them for email, social networking, watching videos, surfing the web, etc. and could, therefore, save money by moving to an iPad (of any stripe), that will be a very slow process. In short, those users will mainly be buying MacBooks in the future, even though they really don’t need them, as they are conditioned to believe they need a traditional computer, even though it’s overkill for their needs. People drive around empty pickup trucks that never do work or have much of anything ever placed in their truck beds, too. They want to drive a truck, even if they never use it for trucking.

In addition, Apple’s iPad Air is a very nice machine, but it pales next to the iPad Pro models in significant ways, which you can clearly see here.


    1. Very true. Smart guy.

      I do love theses predictions on where the market will be in 5 years. All very linear and of course cannot account for new types of devices that could steer the market in a different direction.

      1. And they only express things in terms of growth. In MDNs note they didn’t sell 200M in 2018, they sold 600M in three years, and most of them are still out there. Hence the services push…which I don’t think is for me, but there you go. They are able to just make more or less of these things, or more or less of those things. Whatever the market wants. They just have to stop making things like that MB keyboard. 🙂

  1. Apple’s still the one getting the money for the product. Different options are good thing–if a product doesn’t meet their specific needs, the consumer may not buy a product at all. Cannibalization isn’t what it used to mean–>the $$’s still going to apple regardless of which model–this is their market to lose.

  2. “shaky ground”, “spell trouble” — This guy is an idiot.
    Dare I propose that Apple knows some (many?) people will do this… and it is all taken into account in their strategic planning.

  3. If I wasn’t about to get an iPad Pro 11 or 12.9 (can’t decide) I would certainly buy a 10.5″ Pro over the new Air, for the quad speakers and pro motion.

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