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Report: iPad Mini sales may be double Apple's original order

updated 02:19 am EST, Fri December 14, 2012

Supplier ask to ship over 12 million units for 2012

Initial orders of the iPad mini -- pegged at around six million units for 2012 -- may be only half of what will be required, according to a report from NPD DisplaySearch analyst David Hsieh, who told CNet that Apple is now asking its iPad mini display partners to double the initial order, expecting more than 12 million units to be sold by the end of the year. For a product who's size class was strongly resisted by Apple for years, the nearly 8-inch iPad mini is very likely to outsell its larger, recently-updated big brother, the 9.7-inch fourth-gen iPad.

Though pundits and power-users have criticized the iPad mini for its non-Retina display, the 1024x768 resolution of the smaller tablet does not appear to be an issue for buyers, similar to the way the first two iPad generations were criticized for the resolution but nonetheless achieved astounding sales figures. Sales of the iPad mini have taken off since the device became widely available in stores -- where potential buyers can see and feel that the Mini is much slimmer and lighter (and only slightly smaller) than the full-size iPad, which at a cursory glance doesn't appear to have changed much from the previous iteration. If the 12 million figure is accurate, the iPad mini will also beat out all of its Android-based tablet competition in sales during the quarter, and perhaps for the entire year.

The Mini has won praise in particular for its seamless transition to the smaller size, exceptional quality of construction, increased portability and ability to take full advantage of Apple's much wider and larger selection of tablet-optimized apps -- a major selling point that continues to restrict Android tablets to very limited success if any. The higher price -- $329 -- compared to its closest competitors (the Kindle Fire HD and Galaxy Nexus 7) also doesn't appear to have phased consumers, again perhaps because consumers who are buying in stores can clearly see that the Mini, despite its name, is significantly bigger than the competition.

While Apple has said that it doesn't believe the iPad mini is "cannabalizing" sales of the fourth-generation iPad too much, sales of the iPad 2 -- which the iPad Mini mimics from a spec standpoint -- are likely to be poor due to the presence of the Mini. Apple kept the iPad 2 available as a lower-cost full-size option, but discontinued the third-generation iPad after only eight months, replacing it with the similar but double-speed fourth-generation Retina iPad. NPD's Hsieh says that the iPad mini could account for as much as half of all iPad shipments in 2013, making it the best-selling model.

The company also believes total iPad shipments could reach more than 100 million in the next year, which would likely force Apple to find additional display-making partners -- LG Display and AU Optronics, the current iPad mini display suppliers, may not be able to scale to that level demand that quickly. Both companies have struggled to keep up with quality and quantity demands from Apple for the displays.



By Electronista Staff
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  1. wrenchy

    Forum Regular

    Joined: 11-03-09

    If Steve was still here, he would not approve.

  1. dynsight

    Fresh-Faced Recruit

    Joined: 05-07-05

    The minute you hold a iPad Mini, you know why. It is incredibly light an portable, which is really what people want. That said, I still think it is a wee bit pricey.

  1. Spheric Harlot

    Clinically Insane

    Joined: 11-07-99

    Originally Posted by wrenchyView Post

    If Steve was still here, he would not approve.



    I can't recall Steve ever having disapproved of a smaller model proving wildly successful and eating into sales of the bigger one.

    Do you think he was unhappy about the iPod mini?

  1. wrenchy

    Forum Regular

    Joined: 11-03-09

    Originally Posted by Spheric HarlotView Post


    I can't recall Steve ever having disapproved of a smaller model



    He seems pretty adamant that 7-inch tablets won't work. But then again, a 7.1 or a 7.9-inch screen technically isn't a 7" is it?
    http://youtu.be/gFAjfUT8wZI

  1. chas_m

    MacNN Staff

    Joined: 08-04-01

    Steve Jobs was notorious for being persuadable. He was make absolute statements about things and then, later, when someone made a case, he would totally reverse himself if necessary and become a champion of the new scenario.

    I think the record shows pretty clearly that Eddy Cue (whom Jobs trusted) convinced him that his earlier comments on 7-inch tablets were partially wrong. Cue himself said that on the whole the experience was good with a few weak points. I think Steve simply got his mind changed (he was most assuredly still alive when active plans for making the iPad mini were discussed). If he were alive today I have no doubt he'd be happily explaining to every media outlet that wanted to know why he has reversed his position on the topic.

    Remember he was the champion of the Apple II ... until he got interested in the Mac project. Then the Apple was anathema to him.

    He also said Apple had no interest in making a phone. I think we know where that ended up.

    Some people call this sort of thing "being contradictory," but it's not (unless you flip-flop back and forth). It's called "being open to new ideas, and changing your position based on new evidence."

  1. Consuelo

    Fresh-Faced Recruit

    Joined: 12-15-12

    Technology constantly changes. There is a constant slamming of information from everyplace. 90% of these ideas are complete crap. Jobs was brilliant because he had the sense to cut the crap and throw out opinions that can be challenged by his brilliant group to argue with. They still see you as a leader... but you're a team... If Jobs really was arrogant and full of shit... he would do what every piss poor manager that we've all known would do... but this person had an opened mind about things. That's really the fun part to me. This personality has tension like good music has tension. you can't emulate it or slap it in and mass produce it in a factory... you have to actually give a shit. in the end... once things became good enough to matter. This bullshit about him being against 7 inch tablets applied to those products that were released at the time that he said would be D.O.A. were D.O.A. They were smaller and more expensive than iPad.... However, in using them, the team considered that they could have some value for a certain type of user and eventually become more affordable. There could be many of those types of users out there. The mini is an attempt to reach them. I think the mini design addressed the limitations of the regular iPad like it wanted to tell the iPad that it sucked. That's why I don't want the mini. The idea of the mini when applied to the full sized iPad will be a great product. Once the hardware gets where it needs to be.... they need to cut all of the shit out of the OS so I can get where I need to go so I can stop having to think "what the **** were they thinking?"... This is not a computer... **** features if they interfere with using the product for 99% of what it needs to be used for...

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