iPad – 2 years and 55 million sales later

Given the new iPad’s (3rd generation) release on Friday, I thought I’d look back at my pre-release predictions for the original iPad (1st generation) and see how they stack up two years later.

For easier reading I’ll preface my predictions as P and the outcome as O.

P: “iPad will be a huge success out of the gate with limited sales production supply. Face it, no one can compete with the Apple juggernaut right now (brand familiarity, app store, marketing).”
O: Correct and still true 2 years and 3 generations later.

P: “It will be the first “tablet” that actually draws a viable market.”
O: So true, regardless of all the naysayers whom doomed it a failure.

P: “Other computer makers will join the market in hopes to revive the faltering PC industry.”
O: Correct, tried and failed. The PC industry is faltering. HP, Dell and Lenovo’s (whom apparently makes a tablet but I could not locate any actual sales numbers) iPad equivalents have failed. Only Acer’s Transformer Prime has had any traction. Acer has estimated 1.8 million in tablet sales, that’s for the entire year. It’s estimated that Apple will sell a million of the new iPads during the release weekend alone. Actual 3 day sales: 3 million.

P: “Most of the iPad wanna’bes will be pale imitations (but cost less).”
O: Correct, ever seen the Galaxy Tab or HP Touchpad? However they haven’t all cost less.

P: “…until Google or maybe MS (with a Win7 Series variant?) hit back with a viable OS.”
O: Split. This is an interesting one. One could argue that Android Ice Cream Sandwich is a viable OS but it has yet to ship widely and Android tablets are pretty much DOA up to this point. On the other hand there has been much hullabaloo over Windows 8/Metro to which the consumer preview has been met with mostly positive response. Both viable; one not doing so hot, the other remaining to be seen in the actual marketplace.

P: “They’ll tout better features (hardware) but iPad will continue to sell well.”
O: Galxay Tab, Toshiba Thrive, Motorola Xoom, Blackberry PlayBook, etc. All were hailed for their myriad of “better” components and connections, regardless iPad continues to dominate the market.

P: “Competitors will scratch their heads wondering how Apple does it.”
O: Can’t prove it but I’m quite sure this is happening again and again.

P: “They’ll miss the fact that it’s really more about the UI experience and apps not just the hardware.”
O: Same old story. Even more so now when you’re dealing with tablets where the line between hardware and software converge. When the device is basically a screen with back cover what is left? No doubt, it’s the users interaction via the OS. The new iPad’s Retina display seems to be the pinnacle of this convergence.

P: “Haters will continue to complain there is no true “multitasking” or Flash.”
O: Wrong, but to the positive. No multitasking is a thing of the past. Adobe has killed Flash on mobile devices.

P: “Actual users won’t care because it will meet 90% of their needs regardless.”
O: I’m pretty sure the sales numbers prove this alone.

P: “Traditional publications will attempt to revive the print industry with “interactive” download magazines.”
O: True. Many publishers have flocked to electronic publishing.

P: “I’m unsure if the market will want to pay for this content when a lot if it is already available for free via websites.”
O: E-book use is on the rise. Overall print industry is making inroads electronically, unknown what the overall impact is at this point.

P: “iPad users complain that the eBook format Apple uses doesn’t play nice with other readers. Amazon plays this up and drops Kindle price slightly. iPad is still seen as a great bargain because it does so much more than the Kindle.”
O: Apple and Amazon have basically created a format war when it come to E-books. Both seem to be doing well. Although Apple has recently been accused of price-fixing with the iBookstore. Amazon has basically taken over the low cost tablet market with the Kindle Fire to which they’re selling at a loss.

P: “Both companies take heat over the fluctuating eBook pricing.”
O: I’ve read many complaints about the cost of E-books compared to their cheaper printed versions.

With continued record sales there’s no doubt the new iPad will continue to lead the way in the post-PC era.

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