Apple Core


Plummeting iPad sales and what that means for Apple's future


In all the maelstrom over what the true sales numbers of the Watch were, and what that does or doesn't mean about wearables, and the ever impressive iPhone sales, everyone seems to be glossing over the fact that iPad sales continue to plummet. It's no blip - there have been 6 straight quarters of double digit percentage decreases in unit sales. Yes, I know all the post-facto reasoning (PC like replacement life, cannibalization by larger phones), but the fact is that 2yrs ago when sales were increasing sharply no one predicted that sales would be where they are now (which is down about 30% from the same time calendar year 2013). And as far as the larger phone issue goes, iPad sales started to plummet well before the iPhone 6 and 6+ came out. And while an iPad pro, if it comes to be, may bump tablet sales, I see no reason why the longer trend will abate.

So what does it all mean for Apple? Is the post-PC really just smartphones? Will the trends that have hurt iPad (namely a longer lifecycle) come to iPhone and at some point we'll see a dramatic drop off in sales as opposed to a more PC like long term slowdown as the product matures? Or does it show that phones are so central to our tech lives that iPhone sales will continue to grow and dominate computing device sales?