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Oct 232013

To those running around with older iPads,  don’t bother to open your wallet for Apple’s  new iPad launched yesterday.

The new iPad Air is not worth the extra $599 (32GB), $699 (64GB) or more if you want higher storage.

iPad Air - Not Worth ItApple CEP Tim Cook with iPad Air
(Pix: WSJ)

Except for a new A7 64-bit processor (same as in the iPhone 5s) and reducing the thickness and weight, there’s not much new in Apple’s new tablet.

Sure, the iPad Air is 20% thinner and 28% lighter than the fourth generation iPad but that’s not enough reason to get a new tablet.

My iPad 2 works as well today as it did two years back. I watch live Indian TV channels, listen to music, play YouTube videos, turn on my favorite Korean movies and TV serials and read the news without any issues.

Although my 32GB iPad 2 is running out of space (thanks to all those digital New Yorker issues), I can still easily run with it for some more time by deleting my music collection from the  device.

iPad Air will ship November 1.

A 32GB version (WiFi only) costs $599.

The iPad Mini, which got a Retina makeover, is now $399 for the 16GB model.

Oct 222013

For those keeping track of the iPad or other digital media devices, here are a bunch of tables that reveal how quickly the Apple iPad has become a market-leading tablet and the darling of consumers.

Microsoft, Asus, Google, Dell, Acer, Motorola, Blackberry and dozens of other vendors developed iPad envy seeing the wild success of the iPad and introduced their own tablets.

But none of the rival tablets have anywhere near the adoption rate of the iPad.

Today the majority of tablet Internet traffic comes from the iPad.

And except for the iPad, most tablet vendors are likely losing money despite pricing their devices lower than the iPad.

iPad Timeline from 2010-2013

170m iPads Sold

There was no tablet category until Apple introduced the 9.7-inch iPad in April 2010.

Pre-iPad tablet introductions by Microsoft, Nokia and others were utter disasters with consumers showing them the middle finger.

Apple created the tablet market with the introduction of the iPad.

In less than four years, Apple has introduced five generations of the iPad (including a 7.9-inch iPad mini) and sold over 170 million units.

Apple’s revenues from the iPad since 2010 will approach $100 billion by the end of 2013.

iPad Sales from 2010 - 2013

Developer Support

The iPad would not have been such a raging hit were it not for overwhelming developer support.

Thousands of developers have created nearly half million dedicated iPad applications in diverse categories including games, music, news, utilities, video, sports and live TV.

By late October 2013, there were over a million apps that could run on the iPad. These include both native iPad apps and all apps written for the iPhone.

iPad Apps from 2010-2013

Jul 232013

Bring ‘em on!

That was the strong message Apple sent to the Samsungs, Sonys, Motorolas, HTCs and other Android vendors nipping at its heels.

Apple sold 31.2 million iPhones in its fiscal third quarter ending June 29 proving that the pricey smartphones can still weather the attack from the dozens of Android devices flooding the market.

iPhone unit sales were 5.1 million units ahead of analysts estimates of 26.1 million units for the quarter.

Average selling price of the iPhones were 4% (about $27) less year-over-year.

Apple sold a significant number of lower-priced iPhone 4 and 4S in the quarter, leading to lower average selling price.

In the same quarter a year ago, Apple sold 26 million iPhones.

Total iPhone sales since launch in 2007 were 387.57 million units at the end of June.

Strong iPhone Sales in Q3-2013

If you include sales in the current quarter, total iPhone sales since launch must be nearing the 400 million mark.

iPhone Sales Nearing 400m Units

iPhone – Indian Picture

On a conference call with analysts, Apple CEO Tim Cook said iPhone sales were up 400% in India.

But keep in mind that the iPhone base is still pretty low in India compared to mature markets like the U.S.

Unlike the U.S. market, consumers in India must pay full price for the iPhone since they are not subsidized by the carriers.

Lower priced smartphones from Samsung, Micromax and Karbonn are posing a stiff challenge to the pricey iPhone in India. Continue reading »

Feb 282013

In the spirit of noblesse oblige, SI is providing two informative tables providing total unit sales and their dollar value for the iPhone and the iPad from their launch dates.

The data has been collected off Apple’s quarterly and annual filings to the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission.

iPhone Success

Except the stones the caveman used to ward off dangers and to light a fire, never in human history has a consumer product been so successful in so short a time.

Apple has launched six generations of iPhones since 2007 – iPhone, iPhone 3G, iPhone 3GS, iPhone 4, iPhone 4S and iPhone 5.

iPhone Sales 2007-2013

iPad Tablet

Apple invented the tablet category.

Before the iPad debuts, tablet sales worldwide probably numbered in the hundreds or, at most, a few thousands. Whatever be the numbers in the pre-iPad era, tablets were used only for esoteric applications and not a consumer device.

Apple has put five versions of the iPad since the tablets came out in 2010 – iPad, iPad 2, iPad (3rd generation), iPad (4th generation) and the iPad Mini.

The 7.9-inch iPad Mini, Apple’s latest tablet model, debuted in November 2012.

Both the iPhone and iPad drive several billions of dollars in sales for Apple’s iTunes entertainment content store, App Store and the Mac App Store. We have not included those numbers here.

iPad Sales 2010-2013

Android & iOS Future

While Google’s Android platform is now making considerable headway against Apple’s iOS mobile platform powering the iPhones and iPads, it’s important to bear in mind that Android unit sales and net sales are spread across multiple vendors including Samsung, Google, Acer, Asus, Sony, Barnes & Noble, Lenovo etc.

It’s hard to say if Apple can drive the same momentum for the iPhone and the iPad in the years ahead but history will record the extraordinary success of the iPhone and iPad from 2007-2013 as a milestone in human accomplishment.

Nov 052012

For all those who thought the 7.9-inch iPad Mini was not good enough (one complaint – no HD display) or that rivals were stealing a march on the larger 9.7-inch iPads, consumers gave a fitting response by snapping up three million units of the new iPads in just three days.

Since tablet sales are a zero sum game, any iPad sales can only mean a big loss to the already struggling rivals.

The three million iPads sold over the weekend include both iPad Minis and the fourth generation 9.7-inch display iPads.

iPad Mini Sales Off to a Roaring Start

iPad minis and the fourth generation iPads are currently available only in 34 countries including the US, Australia, Canada, France, Germany, Hong Kong, Japan, South Korea and the UK.

No news on when the new iPads will ship in India.

Apple said Demand for iPad mini exceeded the initial supply and while many pre-orders have been shipped to customers, some are set to ship later this month.

iPad Mini with WiFi costs $329 (16GB), $429 (32GB) and $529 (64GB).

WiFi version of iPad (4th Gen) costs $499 (16GB), $599 (32GB) and $699 (64GB).

The WiFi + Cellular version for both iPad mini and the fourth generation iPad is scheduled to ship in a few weeks in the US.

As the wise SI has said time and again, the tablet game is Apple’s to lose, not for rivals to win.

Apple must make horrendous mistakes for it to lose tablet market share.

And given the glowing reviews for the latest iPads that is not going to happen any time soon.

Rival tablet vendors will have to write off massive losses running into hundreds of millions of dollars.

Now, don’t ask. I’m not buying the iPad Mini or the 4th Gen iPad.

SI is perfectly happy with the iPad 2 (32GB).

Oct 232012

Apple made life tougher for all its tablet competitors with the introduction of the new 7.9-inch iPad Mini tablet (the regular iPad has a 9.7-inch screen).

iPad Mini with 7.9-inch Screen

iPad Mini

* 7.9-inch, Multi-touch Screen

* 7.2mm thick

* 10-hour battery

* 0.68lb weight

* Dual core A5 chip

* iOS 6 software

* 275,000 dedicated tablet Apps + 425,000 Apps designed for iPhone

* Aluminum and glass design

* $329 (16GB), $429 (32GB) and $529 (64GB) for WiFi versions

WiFi+Cellular model – $459 (16GB), $559 (32GBl and $659 (64GB)

* Facetime HD camera

* 5-megapixel back iSight camera for still pictures and recording full 1080p HD video

* Available in two colors – Black & Slate and White & Silver

The iPad already accounts for 90% of all web traffic.

With the new iPad Mini tablets, life is surely going to get miserable for the Android vendors.

Ship Date

iPad Mini (WiFi versions) will ship on November 2.

The WiFi+cellular models will follow two weeks later.

Pre-ordering for both iPad Mini models starts October 26.

I can’t imagine the Kindles, the Nexuses and the rest of the crowd of the crowd holding out for long.

I’ve used the iPad 2 for nearly two years now and have no complaints. It’s a beauty.

By the way, Apple’s 9.7-inch iPad got an upgrade with a faster processor.

The company launched a new 13-inch model of the MacBook Pro notebook with Retina display and new iMac and Mac Mini desktop computers today.