The Macalope: Unspoken alternatives


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Ah, Business Insider. What would we do without you?

Probably lead a rich and fulfilling life.

BI’s Jay Yarrow says “Apple’s iPad Business Unexpectedly Fell Off A Cliff Last Quarter, So It Needs The New iPads To Be Great” (no link but tip o’ the antlers to Wes Kroesbergen).

The iPad refresh can’t come soon enough for Apple.

Clearly, it’s the only thing that can stop the bleeding.

That bleeding being what comes out of the Macalope’s ears when another pundit willfully misunderstands why iPad sales were down last quarter.

Last quarter Apple sold 14.6 million iPads, which was well short of expectations. Analysts were calling for 18 million units to be sold. The 14.6 million iPads represented a 14% year-over-year drop for Apple.

Which is, of course, totally Apple’s fault and not in any way the fault of the analysts who made up those expectations.

It’s possible Apple will post another drop in iPad unit growth this quarter.

It is possible. Wonder why that is? Probably because people don’t like iPads anymore.

This would be a surprising turn of events for Apple and the iPad business.

Would it? Or would it be kinda actually predictable given … well, let’s wait for that. There’s more stupid to get through.

Sales are not skyrocketing, they’re cooling.

Are they? According to who?

Anonymous Apple pundit Sammy The Walrus IV …

Oh, well, then, why didn’t you say so?

… noted this on Twitter, saying, “The iPad simply should not be having yoy unit sales declines this early in life. No other way around it. Too much success early on?”

Oookay, well, anonymous Apple pundit the Macalope notes that Sammy The Walrus IV may have missed a key point here that pretty much explains why sales of iPads dropped off: Apple moved its release cycle. Last year Apple introduced the third-generation iPad in April. Then it released the iPad mini and the fourth-generation iPad 4 in October, moving iPad releases from spring to fall. (Surely you remember how angry iPad 3 owners took to the streets because their devices were suddenly, magically, and irrevocably rendered completely useless.) The second calendar quarter of 2013 didn’t have the release of a new iPad. The second quarter of 2012 did.

You’d think a detail like that would merit some mention even in passing. Then again, you don’t write for Business Insider and/or have not suffered a blow to the head.

Perhaps everyone that wanted one rushed out to buy it, leaving fewer buyers today.

Maybe people just hate iPads.

Or, maybe the iPad doesn’t operate on the same upgrade cycle as an iPhone.

Or iPads cause erectile dysfunction.

Perhaps people buy a new iPad every three or four years instead of every two.

Maybe iPads are silently killing their users.

Or maybe the iPhone is so good that it replaces the iPad for most users.

You know what people really like? Kettle corn.

Whatever the case may be, Apple better figure it out.

Uh-huh. Right, it’s Apple that needs to figure this out.

When Apple is rolls out new iPads on Tuesday, it better have something to get unit sales growing again.

Because the iPad business is in such trouble. It surely couldn’t be that people who write for Business Insider either don’t understand changes in cyclicality or pretend not to.


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