The Macalope Daily: iPad shmiPad

Prepare for a great gnashing of teeth, because it looks like the iPad-killing isn’t going so well.

Once again going recklessly against the conventional wisdom, Apple has extended its lead in the tablet market to almost 70 percent, according to a report from IDC. Like it wasn’t high enough before.

The Macalope believes it’s instructive at times like these to go back and review what people were saying about Apple products in previous news cycles.

Sorry, did the Macalope say “instructive”? He meant “hilarious.” How embarrassing. However could he have made such a mistake? Hahaha!

Anyway …

Almost two years ago it was clear that the iPad was doing pretty well. That is, unless you thought that netbooks were just super-awesome, like ABI’s Jeff Orr. Back in 2010, Jeff was going to great pains to point out that the iPad wasn’t “all that,” nor “the bee’s knees,” because, as of May 2010, it had failed to match the first year of netbook sales.

“Apple has sold a few million iPads in its first quarter, which is great for creating a new market,” wrote ABI Research principal analyst Jeff Orr in a note today. “But early adoption of media tablets is not outpacing Netbooks.”

So, step down, girlfriend!

OK, OK. Fair enough. Say, Jeff, how many netbooks were sold in their first year?

Historically, looking back to 2008—the first year that Netbooks really came into vogue—Orr puts Netbook shipments at 15 million…

Wow! That’s a lot. Huh. Wonder how many iPads Apple sold in their first year?

Oh, that’s right, 15.43 million.

Whoa, whoa, whoa. All it did was effectively tie netbooks. Big whoop. In netbooks’ second year, they blew the doors off.

And this figure roughly doubled in 2009 to 30 million Netbooks shipped.

Ha! How many iPads did Apple sell in its second …

Yeah, it was 40 million. For 2010, Orr was predicting sales of netbooks would be 43 million. Jeff thought the sky was the limit for netbooks!

Aaaand here we are.

Orr was not alone in not being impressed by the iPad. CNet’s Molly Wood thought the Kindle Fire would burn the iPad’s lunch and, yes, she even used the k-word.

“Kindle Fire an iPad killer? Yes. It’s the price, stupid”

Well, let’s leave it to a chastened Jeff Orr to tell Molly how that worked out.

“Jeff Orr, ABI Research: iPad Remains Dominant in 1Q’2012 While Kindle Fire Fizzles”

Nicely done, Jeff! Glad to see you finally got the memo.

And, finally, it will come as no surprise that as late as March of 2011, PCWorld’s Katherine Noyes was insisting that tablets were just a fad and that she “fully expect[s] them to fade out of the mainstream over the next few years.” Apple, meanwhile, shipped 17 million iPads in the last quarter, an increase of 84 percent over the prior year.

Well, in Katherine’s defense, all those sales were to Apple fanbois who, as we all know, are well outside the open-source-loving mainstream.

[Editors’ Note: In addition to being a mythical beast, the Macalope is not an employee of Macworld. As a result, the Macalope is always free to criticize any media organization. Even ours.]

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