At the iPhone 5 event held on Wednesday, September 12, 2012, Tim Cook announced these facts regarding iPads:
1) Last quarter, Apple sold 17 million iPads.
2) Apple sold more iPads than any PC manufacturer sold of their entire PC lineup.
3) Apple has sold a total of 84 million iPads since its launch in April 2010, less than two and a half years ago.
4) Competitors have launched hundreds of tablets to compete with the iPad. One year ago, the iPad had 62% market share. Today the iPad’s lead has grown to 68% market share.
First, all the action, all the growth in computing is in mobile devices. As for the future of computing, in my opinion, smartphones will have the bigger numbers, but tablets will have the bigger impact.
Second, neither Apple, nor HP, nor Dell, nor Lenovo, nor Acer, nor any one else who makes a living selling computing hardware cares a whit about whether you call the iPad a PC, a computer, a media tablet or a toy. That’s all just meaningless semantics. What they do care about is that Apple is selling more and more $500 (and up) devices while they are selling less and less.
“Airplanes are interesting toys but of no military value” ~ Marshal Ferdinand Foch
Third, Apple is just crushing the competition in this all-important new category. Starting with nearly 100% market share in 2010, it was inevitable that Apple’s overall market share would drop as seemingly every other manufacturer on the planet started selling this new, and rapidly growing form factor. So to see Apple’s market share GROWING after a two and a half year span is simply mind blowing.
Fourth, Google – and therefore Android – has, in my opinion, completely missed the boat in tablet computing. Andy Rubin and Google stubbornly refuse to acknowledge that there is a fundamental difference between smartphone apps and tablet apps:
“I don’t think there should be apps specific to a tablet…if someone makes an ICS app it’s going to run on phones and it’s going to run on tablets.” ~ Andy Rubin
Apple just announced that there are over 250,000 iPad specific apps in their store. Developers don’t create apps for kicks and buyers don’t buy iPad specific apps for no reason. There is a difference between a smartphone app and a tablet app. Apple gets it. Google doesn’t.
Android tablet manufacturers have paid the price for Google’s misstep as the lack of tablet specific Apps has cut the ground out from under their tablet efforts.
And with the introduction of the Google Nexus 7, Google has all but ended any hope that any Android manufacturer – other than Google – can make a profit on Android powered tablets.
Fifth, when you see the above numbers, you can see how very desperately Microsoft wants and needs to be in this sector. Microsoft Windows rules the notebook and desktop markets but they have nothing going on in phones and tablets…yet.
The future of computing is in tablets. And right now, Apple owns that future.