back to article People don't want tablets, they want iPads

The phenomenal sales success of Apple's iPad shows no sign of abating, but sales for all other tablets competitors are stagnating and channel inventories are building. US tech titan HP is the latest to correct its prices, trimming £50 off the cost of a TouchPad in an effort to get them shifting, with the 16GB and 32GB versions …


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  1. DavCrav Silver badge

    Proves they are useless?

    If only Apple sell tablets, and all other tablets are fine, which broadly they are, then it means (certain) people want Apple bling, not tablets.


    heh no thanks

    so people dont want tablets they want ipads hum er a ipad is a tablet its the same thing as all those other square thingys. you wont be seeing me getten any apple tablet or phones etc. oh yea the real reason why apple has blocked the galaxy tab is because they dont like the competition and the fact the galaxy tab is thinner than the ipad hahaha, il pass on anything apple

  3. Christopher P. Martin

    Well, it's good news if you ask me.

    Having just bought a bottom-of-the range Archos 101 tablet for a mere £150 (just dropped from £200 at Carphone Whorehouse), I'm happy as a badger in a pile of worms. It's not fancy, and the viewing angles are a bit tight, but it's great for 90% of what tablets three times the price actually get used for.

  4. Tim #3


    I wonder if their pricing is anything to do with this. For instance, the Fujitsu T901 is $1899 stateside, which converts to about £1150 sterling.... so howcome UK stockists want around £1600 for it.

  5. Gary Barber

    Too much

    The problem is that most of the other tablets are too close to the iPad in price. The iPad is still seen as the tablet to covet, so any competitors need to be coming in with something of similar quality but at a significantly lower price. Otherwise, most people are simply going to stick with what they've seen most of, and get an iPad.

    Personally I'm tight and my 10" gen2 Hannspad with custom Rom is doing me just fine. For the princely sum of £127.49. As far as I can tell it does everything that a Tegra 2 based Fondle Slab should and I'm not even fussed about it being fatter than an iPad or that it only has an 8 hour battery life.

  6. Anonymous Coward
    Thumb Down

    fantasy figures

    This has got nothing whatsoever to do with the masses wanting an ipad. All these tablets cost around a third of their selling price to produce. All this tells us is that the only fools willing to pay over the odds for their tablets are those who have been infected by the jobsian cult.

  7. Is it me?


    I can have an iPad for £399 or an HP wannabe for £399, reduced to £349, hmmm, £200, and I might consider it.

    1. Frederick Tennant

      Making a copy of iPad is cheating

      The Samsung looks the same as the Pad, thats just taking the piss, as some people would think they was buying a Ipad.

      lets hope that when they do come out they are nice and cheep like £150 hint hint

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward


      "If only Apple sell tablets, and all other tablets are fine, which broadly they are, then it means (certain) people want Apple bling, not tablets."

      Only the top of the range models from other manufacturers are broadly similar. Most of the cheaper offerings are nowhere near as good. It's actually very hard to find something that isn't actually rather poor *unless* you spend a lot of time investigating first.

      This means that most 'average' buyers are looking at the ipad and deciding "too expensive", then looking at the cheaper alternative and going "yuk". They then either buy the expensive or give up and buy a laptop instead.

      Obviously there is also a large-ish market share of people who do just buy apple anyway.

    3. ThomH Silver badge

      Not very sound reasoning

      Your argument is: if you assume there's nothing wrong with the product then there's something wrong with the consumers.

      I'm as surprised that Apple is staying ahead as anybody, but couldn't it just be that the glut of new tablets and the besmirching of Android's name by some very awful no-brand tablets are preventing decent tablets that make 'Android' a big part of the pitch from picking up momentum quickly?

      I'll be more surprised than anyone if Apple's share still isn't significantly reduced a year from now.

      1. Wayland Sothcott 1 Bronze badge

        Cheap Android are crap

        I have a cheapo Android tablet and it is so bad I never want to try one again. Except I have seen the Apple product and it shows what they can be like. We definitely need an open alternative to Apple, just like the PC is an open alternative to Apple lock-in. What happened to the Windows Mobile in the tablet world? Why is Apple the only one that's any good?

        1. Manu T

          RE: Cheap Android are crap

          q: What happened to the Windows Mobile in the tablet world?

          a: Windows what?

          q: Why is Apple the only one that's any good?

          a: because they don't make cheap plastic toys with cheap plastic screens.

          You wrote yourself. You have a CHEAP Android tablet. Stop comparing a 200UKP product with a 600UKP product. It would be truely bad if the 600UKP device was indeed worse than your cheap tablet.

          Also Apple has the music- and moviebusiness in it's pocket. They have a vast library of the passive consumer content that Google just hasn't got. Plus the device is targetted for simplicity. It's the ideal replacement for the bedroom or the kitchen TV. While Google doesn't clearly define what Android really is. Is it for a computer? Is it for a phone? Is it for a mediaplyer? Or is it merely a handheld webbrowser?

    4. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Or maybe make a tablet that is actually useful

      I think this is going to run the same course as netbooks. They all started out using Linux, and so were not particularly useful for most people. Once they started shipping with Windows then they found a broader audience. So next year when we have Windows 8 Tablets then non-Apple tablet sales will increase, if the price is reasonable.

    5. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Where are you getting this from?

      When the iPad first came out I recall people being surprised that its price was so low given the cost of its components; seemed Apple wanted to jump start the market instead of make their usual hardware profit. Maybe the cost of these components has come down but I'd be surprised if an iPad-like tablet costs only ~$150 to produce.

    6. Armando 123

      Um ...

      VAT? US list price doesn't include sales tax? Higher cost of doing business in UK? Higher taxes? Nah, must be some conspiracy.

      1. Goat Jam

        Once they started shipping with Windows

        they became (crappy) notebooks and the market flatlined, only to be taken over by tablets, aka "the ipad"

        There, I fixed it for you.

      2. Martin Owens


        started out using "Linux", - You keep on using that word, I do not think it means what you think it means.

        1. Horned-Devil

          Ah, memories...

          The Princess Bride - what a great film...

    7. Efros


      The 32GB iPad 2 WiFi + 3G costs Apple $326.60, retails at $739 at Amzn, so nearer a half rather than a third. Apple made an approximate 40% profit on everything they sold in the last quarter.

      1. John Molloy

        Cost of everything... the value of nothing...

        Where did you get your numbers from? Does it actually have anything in there for marketing? Did the design just come up at no cost? The cost of components are not the cost of manufacture, and Apple's leading device, the iPhone is probably responsible for the largest parts of Apple's profit margins as they get full retail from the carriers for every one sold.

        More to the point. Amazon isn't allowed to sell iPads, only the scammers and third parties put iPads on Amazon as the actual company has no agreement with Apple to sell the iPad. This is why the sales charts on Amazon are not the place to go when trying to work out how well the iPad is selling because they don't there.

        1. Efros

          Apple store

          Has iPad2 32GB wifi +3G for $729 add tax to that and you get to about $760 depending on your locale. The BOM is fairly widely available and varies by only a few dollars, the number I quoted came from slashgear, and the percentage profit Apple makes is widely available as they have to report their company results. As to marketing costs, I have no clue, but I doubt it could make up anywhere near the difference between the BOM and the retail price.

      2. Manu T

        RE: Hmmm

        You mean Apple makes a 126,27% profit

        1. The Indomitable Gall

          Re: RE: Hmmm

          @Manu T

          "You mean Apple makes a 126,27% profit"

          No, the full retail mark-up includes the retailer and distributor's share too.

  8. Ru

    Ahh, Smug Mode.

    Its nice to have my angry rants validated by what appear to be actual sales figures.

  9. John I'm only dancing


    That's the solution to the European pad mountain, hack them to run iOS.

  10. Flugal

    I don't want an iPad

    I don't want an iPad (and i say that as a Jesus Phone owner), I want a decent Android fondleslab for under £300.

    Sounds like they're heading in the right direction - if anybody thinking of buying a non-iPad tablet of fondlesom joy can hold off for a while, just to ensure they drop the price by another £50, that'd be grand.

  11. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    South Park have already reported this

    Cartman: Okay, wifi plus 3G, 64 gigs. This one, this one!

    Liane: Oh, sweetie, $900?

    Cartman: I can't wait to see the look on Kyle's stupid face when he sees my iPad has more memory than his!

    Liane: Eric, we can't afford that one.

    Cartman: Well you don't expect me to get the wifi-only 16-gig version, do you?

    Liane: I think we need to get you a different brand, hon. They're a little cheaper.

    Cartman: Mom, everyone knows that everything but Apple is stupid!

    Liane: [sees something interesting] Here, look at this one. A Toshiba Handibook.

    Cartman: Toshiba Handibook??

    Liane: This says it does everything the iPad does, at half the price.

    Cartman: Mom, do not screw me over again! If I take that thing to school, everyone is gonna think I'm a poverty-stricken asshole!

    Liane: Eric, stop acting like a spoiled brat! You can either have the Toshiba Handibook or you can hae nothing at all!

    Cartman: [looks at her for a second] Oh, I've got a better idea! Why don't you go across the street and buy some condoms?! Because we should at least be safe if you're gonna fuck me, Mom!

  12. Guido Esperanto


    "Ironically, Samsung's Galaxy Tab 10.1 would have challenged Apple in terms of size, weight and specs, ...."

    no disrespect, but no one outside of tech circles has ever heard of the Galaxy Tab. The word synonymous with tablet devices is IPAD.

    People who want a tablet I see fall into 3 categories.

    Technical people: such as reg readership (who will buy devices purely on capability and technical merit).

    Then you have Joe/Jane Public with £700 burning a hole in their pocket

    Then Joe/Jane Public who dont have £700 to burn.

    Give any Joe/Jane public a choice of tablets FOC and I'd say 99% would choose IPAD.

    Its fashionable, its simple, its been marketed perfectly by Apple- much to every other manufacturers disgust.

    I cannot see any tablet gaining as much popularity as the IPAD until something easier or more fashionable comes out, or has its own "must have niche."

  13. Bob H

    It isn't about the i-factor

    I think one of the reason tablet sales might be a little disappointing is because the tablets themselves are a little disappointing.

    At a conference recently an analyst said in order to sell a product against a dominant force you can't just be different, you have to be much better. The current crop of tablets aren't bad, they just aren't much better than the dominant brand.

  14. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward


    It is easy to figure out why. Most people who buy tablets have them to show off with and not to do any real work on and if it's about showing off then your not going to want anything but an ipad.

    This just leaves a few people who are not interested in showing of who have a need for something small on the go to buy a tablet that isn't an ipad.

  15. Thomas Wolf

    Predictable Outcome

    Given Apple's lead and its large application eco-system, it was quite predictable that HP's TouchPad - based on their own WebOS and for which nobody's developing apps - would not sell. Even with a $100 discount. But is a bit more difficult to understand why Android-based tablets have not sold well either - after all, the Android app market is starting to be bigger than Apple's. I think the problem with Android vendors is, perhaps, one of sex appeal (or lack thereof) and usability (or lack thereof). The only Android tablet that comes close to Apple's iPad - or even exceeds it - in either of these categories is the Samsung 10.1 tablet...and Apple is doing its level best to sue it into oblivion. Other Android tablets are too chunky in girth or have underpowered user experiences, I think.

    Finally, there's price: Apple has always charged a premium for its products. Android tablet makers have been trying to charge the same price as Apple - for products that aren't even as good as Apple's. Why would *anyone* pay an Apple premium (for material, design, user experience) without getting these benefits? The only way Android tablet makers will succeed meaningfully against the iPad is to sell it at a meaningful discount - e.g. for $399 (vs. Apple's $499)...or offer something substantially better.

  16. Cool Hand Luke

    It's all about the badge

    Everyone knows that it's all just about the name, the brand, the image and not what can or can't be done with it.

    It's a premium consumer brand, like Audi or BMW, Dyson, etc.. There are other cars, that are just as good, sometimes better and also cost less, but people like a premium badge.

    Unless you are in the know, you won't entertain anything but the perceived leading brand.

    I have an iPad 1 that I got when Apple did the £100 off thing and I can't see what any of the new tablets would give me over it? Flash? Why do I need flash?

  17. Joefish

    Well, if they can't be arsed to promote their own product

    and simply ride on Apple's coat-tails, what do they expect?

  18. PyLETS

    overpriced or underspecified

    Why should I want a less capable tablet than the £200 Linux Acer netbook I purchased 2 years ago and which I'm posting this on ? The Android tablets I've seen are either around the same price but lacking essentials such as networking ( or dare I mention keyboards ?) or of similar capabilities but at twice the price. Apple's products are in a different class, as these have buyers who regard them as the Rolls Royce of the product category - and are willing to pay premium prices compared to most potential users.

  19. Anonymous Coward

    But how can this be??

    Everyone knows the iPads a failure, Apple knows nothing, its just a big iPod, Android rulz, nobody wants tablets as they dont do anything, netbooks are better etc etc.

  20. EddieD


    Must check out the remainders bin...

    1. Ralthor

      Flash! Saviour of the universe! Aha!

      Flash? Why do I need flash?

      In order to properly view flash heavy websites whilst surfing on the sofa and avoiding whatever the dominant half may be currently watching on TV. Only having played with a iFondle for 20 minutes or so some time back at a mates house Im not sure if it renders flash heay sites properly or not but its definitely a reason for wanting flash.

      You're right about the badge thing though.

      1. Keith Crooks
        Thumb Down

        Not for me thanks

        I'm not a fan of flash heavy websites anyway. In most cases it's style over content IMHO. And with more and more people viewing the web on their phone/tablet, who really wants to wait for a flash heavy site to load and then fiddle round with it on a touch screen? And a lot of the functionality Flash is used for can be accomplished with JavaScript or HTML5 which degrade more gracefully on devices that can't handle Flash. I'd rather miss out on a bit of icing than not get the cake at all!

    2. Martin Hill

      Predictable indeed

      Thomas, where'd you get the idea the Android App market is getting to be bigger than Apple's?

      There are still only a couple of hundred Android tablet apps versus over 130,000 iPad apps.

      Of course scaled-up phone apps just don't cut the mustard and even if you do count them, there are still far fewer Android phone apps, 45% of them are spamware and there is still only 10% the number of top tier game apps on Android.

      Also Apple does not sell the iPad at a premium. Remember when the entire industry was shocked when Apple introduced the iPad at half the $1,000 they were expecting. Well competitors are still struggling to beat Apple's price particularly when they have to put in twice the amount of RAM because Android is far less efficient at using RAM than iOS.

      Then there are Apple's enormous enconomies of scale and headlock on component supplies and you wonder why no-one can compete?


    3. Wake up befor you sleep thru windows last crash...

      Apple has the price point nailed.

      Premium prices? Uh, look again. No one can compete with Apple on price. NOt on tablets, not even on laptops and desktops. iMac over any so-called 'competition' (than can only run windoze and linux.) What a joke!

    4. Wake up befor you sleep thru windows last crash...

      iPad skunks the so-called "competition" (copy cats)

      No, it's about far more than that. People are upgrading from iPod. Perhaps you have heard of it? LOL. And no-one, but the die hard techno geeks want anything with a "WINDOZE" badge on it. No longer, those days are OVER my friends.

      You will see Apple go to 50% marketshare in the near future.

    5. Wake up befor you sleep thru windows last crash...


      Even the Mac, though it was far better than WIndoze, was not ENOUGH better to overcome the lowly PC. I was a PC user for many years before going mac. The FACT that Mac had it all over the PC only afforded Apple the ability to SURVIVE when literally EVER OTHER competitor was driven completely out of business.

    6. Wake up befor you sleep thru windows last crash...


      Keep telling yourself that, while we all use iCloud, beam to Apple TV, and integrate totally with all our other iDevices.

      Remember your PC can't really run OS X Lion...

      1. DryBones


        That's because Apple actively works to prevent MacOS from running on other than their kit. Linux ad Windows work fine on a Mac, because it's all the same hardware. Glad they're having such good luck with their BSD GU add-onI, but their real genius is in people skills, not technology.

      2. Burch

        I notice

        That you only really post about Apple.

        1. stu 4


          it's never been easier to install osx on any modern x86 hardware.

        2. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward


          They don't actively try to prevent people from running OS X on regular PC hardware, they just don't go out of their way to make it easy. There is a thriving Hackintosh community that seems to exist more or less with Apple's blessing--if they wanted to tie OS X to Mac serial numbers or add other stumbling blocks it doesn't seem like it would be that hard for them.

      3. DryBones

        I for one...

        Welcome our turtleneck-wearing overords, and wish them luck with their new malware problem. :)

      4. DryBones


        That's because they were expecting a tiny desktop, not a big phone.

      5. JEDIDIAH

        Fanboy silliness.

        > No one can compete with Apple on price.

        Of course they can.

        That's why Apple no longer owns the smart phone space and lost the PC space to the IBM 5150.


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