We’d hoped for the iWatch but it wasn’t to be. Yesterday in California, Apple unveiled the all new iPad Air and the iPad mini with retina display. Apple has faced increasing competition in the tablet market and has launched the iPad Air in response. The iPad Air is a lighter, thinner and faster version of it’s high-end tablet device with prices starting at £399. Since Apple launched the original iPad, companies such as Google, Amazon and Tesco have launched cut price competing products with a focus on the low end of the market.
Apple launches the iPad Air
Apple has stuck to what it knows best with the launch of the iPad Air – focusing on the high-end of the market where tablet consumers will pay a premium for the technology and expect a rich and diverse app ecosystem to be at their disposal. The iPad Air is a premium product with a premium strategy. Apple has also released a new version of the iPad mini complete with high density retina display. Priced at £319 and cunningly dubbed the ‘iPad mini retina’, both of these new devices will go on sale in the UK on November 1st.
The iPad is king of the tablets
There are now many companies in the tablet space attempting to break into Apple’s share of the market. However Apple CEO Tim Cook was quick to dismiss the threat from potential competitors. “Everyone seems to be making a tablet, even some of the doubters. But regardless of what you might hear or read about how many are bought or sold or activated, iPad is used a lot more.” The new iPads are designed to solidify Apple’s position as the dominant force at the premium end of the market for tablets. The iPad has now sold a staggering 170 million units since its initial launch, which is four times greater than sales of all the other tablets combined.
PC sales in massive decline
Sales of tablets are set to skyrocket in the build up to the holiday season. Analysts are predicting tablet sales will outsell PC’s during the same period. IDC predicts that 84.1 million tablets will be sold to consumers versus 83.1 million PC sales. This serves to underpin the decline in PC sales and the explosive growth in the popularity of the tablet. There are nearly 70 million iPad owners in the USA – 22.1% of the population. By the year 2017 more than half of the American population will own a tablet. In the UK there are a total of 20 million tablet users with 11.8 million brits using the iPad as their device of choice. By 2017 52.7% of the entire UK population will own a tablet with Apple and iPad possessing the lions share of the market.
The iPad mini retina display
The original iPad mini which was launched last year has become the worlds best selling tablet. Whilst tablet offerings from Google and Microsoft tend to be cheaper, Apple has been keen to point out that its own ‘walled garden’ ecosystem for apps is far greater and more likely to persuade consumers to buy an iPad than a competing product. Apple has an enormous ecosystem of apps that have been developed with the iPad and iPad mini specifically in mind. There are nearly 400,000 apps designed and developed specifically for the iPad compared to less than 30,000 for Google Android.
Develop your tablet app today
If you’re a business, brand manager or marketer the time has never been better to develop an app for iPad. The market is set to explode between now and 2017 and the data displays that consumers are increasingly shifting away from PC based desktop content consumption towards mobile tablets. Consumers are increasingly seeking products and services via smartphones and tablets and mobile commerce should be an essential component of any long-term business strategy. To discuss your iPad app development project contact us today for a free consultation.