Wednesday, August 2, 2017 [Tweets] [Favorites]

Did the iPad Turn the Corner This Quarter?

Jason Snell:

It took a while. Seriously, it’s been more than three years since Apple posted year-over-year growth in iPad revenue. That’s a really long time—and a long slide downward on just about every iPad chart you can think of.

[…]

Now, one quarter doesn’t make a turnaround—but when you consider the contraction of the iPad business for the past 13 quarters, a 15 percent year-over-year growth spurt sticks out like a sore thumb.

John Gruber:

But iPad revenue was only up about 2 percent. That suggests to me, strongly, that this sales bump was driven strongly by the new 9.7-inch iPad that starts at $329.

I don’t quite understand why people are treating this as a bad thing. It’s good that Apple has made a more affordable iPad that customers seemingly like (unless they just didn’t want to be stuck on iOS 9). And more units sold will be good for the app market.

Also of note: AirPods are still supply constrained.

Update (2017-08-03): Nigel Warren:

At the same time, it’s important that the iPad continue to grow at the high end. So much iPad commentary over the past two years of falling sales has been about the fear that the device has already reached its peak potential utility. And if so, that peak has been far lower than what many dreamed of when it first debuted.

The iPad’s average selling price can be seen as an indication of whether the iPad has the potential to continue evolving into a more capable tool.

There’s some truth in this, but I think most of the limits on the iPad’s potential are due to software (which is improving with iOS 11) and the overall form factor (which iPad Pro doesn’t change much). Also, I see the cheaper iPad as a great gateway product. Someone who is skeptical about iPad as a work device may not want to jump in at the Pro level. But they can buy a regular iPad, get hooked, and upgrade later. And it’s important to remember that the capabilities of the base iPad will improve over time. So I actually lean towards the opposite view, which is that if growth were primarily at the high end, that would be bad news for iPad’s potential.

Joe Rossignol:

“ASPs were steady from last quarter, showing that higher priced iPad Pro models also sold well, even though the new 12.9-inch and 10.5-inch models were out for less than a month in the June quarter,” he added.

4 Comments

It's a good thing for Apple. Did they specify whether they increased their market share in education thanks to these numbers or is the share of the iPad in the education market still going down?

@someone Education sales were up 32%. I don’t know how that translates to marketshare.

"So I actually lean towards the opposite view, which is that if growth were primarily at the high end, that would be bad news for iPad’s potential."

Of course, but as we both know, Cupertino is solely focused on short-term financials, which means they want revenue growth, not unit growth.

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