New iPad’s Biggest Threat Isn’t From Microsoft Or Google, It’s From The iPad Mini [Report]

New iPad’s Biggest Threat Isn’t From Microsoft Or Google, It’s From The iPad Mini [Report]

Bigger isn’t always better. It depends how you use it.

Apple launched the fourth-generation iPad back in October, introducing a new A6X processor, a FaceTime HD camera, and its new Lightning connector. But despite those improvements, it appears the device isn’t selling as well as its predecessors. The reason? Another tablet is “cannibalizing” its sales.

But that tablet isn’t from Microsoft, or Google, or Amazon — or any other manufacturer for that matter. That tablet is the iPad mini.

According to an investors note from Citi, Apple’s new 7-inch iPad is killing its bigger brother. In an poll of 50 Apple stores, Citi found supplies of the iPad mini to be limited, while the fourth-generation iPad was there in abundance.

80% of the stores called said that “some version” of the iPad mini was available, CNET reports, but 96% said that “overall availability was limited based on the amount, storage options, and colors consumers were seeking.” It appears that the 32GB iPad mini was the model that was easiest to get hold of.

In comparison, 100% of the Apple stores contacted had the new iPad (the 9.7-inch model) in stock, while just 6% said supplies were limited. Citi analyst Glen Yeung said in his note: “While not explicitly asked, it is clear in our survey work that [the] iPad 4 is not selling well, cannibalized by Mini sales.”

Yeung estimated that Apple had lined up 10 million iPad minis for this current quarter, and 10 to 15 million units of all other iPads combined. It’s clear that the Cupertino company expects the iPad mini to be a big hit this Christmas, then — and significantly more popular than its siblings.

Yeung did not ignore the fact that iPad mini supplies were also limited due to manufacturing issues. He acknowledged a November 27 report in which it was claimed one of Apple’s two display manufacturers, AU Optronics, was having production yield problems that are causing supply constraints.

However, AU Optronics has since dismissed the report, insisting its iPad panel shipments remain on target.

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  • JoViKe

    Pretty short article.

  • JoViKe

    Aha, I’ve reloaded a few times and text has appeared. Extrapolating sales figures from availability? That’s the sort of woolly thinking we get from city analysts.

  • Fafnrd35

    The 4th iPad sales are being ‘canibalized’, by the 3rd gen iPad. It is only a few months older than the 4th gen iPad.

  • Mystakill

    The 4th iPad sales are being ‘canibalized’, by the 3rd gen iPad.

    Exactly. There’s really no compelling argument, other than a speed bump, to convince existing iPad 3 owners to “upgrade”.

    Also, the lack of availability and the “new” factor of the Mini make it more desirable for others.

  • RadTech5000

    iPad Mini Retina early 2013, hold out just a-little bit longer everyone.

  • extra_medium

    Didn’t you guys rehash that report going around that the iPad mini was actually enhancing full sized iPad sales just a week or so ago?

    Its pretty obvious that people are going to buy one or the other, and that iPad 4 sales would suffer because of the iPad mini. But overall apple is going to sell more devices either way.

  • TeachMeiOS

    I will definitely be waiting for the iPad Mini Retina. It is hard to use any non-retina screen iOS device any more. I just love all those pixels :). I’m guessing the iPad Mini Retina will be coming out next year. We’ll see.

About the author

Killian BellKillian Bell is a staff writer based in the U.K. He has an interest in all things tech and also covers Android over at CultofAndroid.com. You can follow him on Twitter via @killianbell.

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