updated 12:57 pm EST, Wed December 4, 2013
First-gen iPad mini, iPhone 5c also see surges
iPad Air activations grew some 51 percent over the previous weekend during the course of Black Friday and the rest of the Thanksgiving weekend, according to new Localytics data. The figure is based on the number of new devices that appeared in Localytics tracking for some 20,000 apps. The iPhone 5c and first-generation iPad mini also did well, each growing by 26 percent.
The Retina Mini saw activations rise 17 percent, while the iPhone 5s came in at 15 percent, just five points better than the iPhone 4S. Two non-Apple devices -- the 7-inch Kindle Fire HD and the Samsung Galaxy S4 -- both did better than the Retina Mini and 5s in terms of growth rates, rising 23 and 20 percent, respectively.
The wildly varying performance of Apple products is attributed to several factors. During its Black Friday promotion, the company offered gift cards for the Air and the first-gen Mini, but not the Retina Mini. The Air is also a comparatively recent product next to the 5s and 5c, and both the 5s and Retina Mini are still in low supply.
The Localytics data doesn't fully reflect sales, however. Any products bought as gifts won't have been activated, and therefore won't show up in tracking until later in the season. In some cases, people may have simply had to wait until after the weekend to go online.