Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Tablets... thinner but too late?

So at CTIA, Samsung announced not only the anticipated 8.9" Galaxy Tab, but also a totally redesigned 10.1" Galaxy Tab (which was just announced a month earlier). Spurred by the thinness of the new iPad 2, both of these tablets are 8.6mm thin, .2 mm thinner than the iPad 2.


When there was a report about a Samsung VP reconsidering their 10.1" product based on what Apple released, I thought he was just talking out loud... but I guess not considering the new mock-up of the 10.1".

The only problem is these won't be out until the summer (the 10.1" has a specific release date of June 8). If anyone remembers, the HP Touchpad also has a summer release and the HTC EVO View (or Flyer) was just announced with a summer date too.

Who has time to wait 3 to 5 months while the iPad 2 is sucking up everyone's money? At least RIM's Playbook will be out on April 19.

And by summer... the iPhone 5 will be in full hype mode and these new tablets will have to compete with those headlines.

While everyone can hate on Apple for their closed systems, design etc... you have to give it up to them in the marketing sales strategy, when they announce a new product, it's out either same day or shortly thereafter. At this rate, by the time any of these companies get it right with their 2nd revision (ie Xoom 2, Galaxy Tab(s) 2, Playbook 2 and Touchpad 2), Apple could be on their iPad 3 or 4.

Saturday, March 12, 2011

iPad 2 Sold Out?

For an "incremental update", the iPad 2 sure is popular.

I have 4 Apple Stores within driving distance of me and 3 of the 4 report no iPad 2s to sell today. I'm sure the 4th is the same. All the local Targets and Best Buys are also sold out (within minutes of yesterday's 5pm start time).

And if you order online, shipping has been delayed 2 to 3 weeks.

I don't get it. I'm sure Apple knew how popular this would be but once again demand seems to outstrip supply.

I would imagine they could break weekend sales records for a consumer device if they had enough to sell so why not have more available on opening weekend? It's not like any leftover inventory isn't going to sell for the next 3 months.

While some say they may be artificially limiting supply to raise the hype... from a business standpoint, that wouldn't be sound strategy. I can understand not allowing pre-orders to increase the number of first day buyers, but there should be enough inventory at the stores to satisfy the demand.

Why not make enough? Apple is only going to anger the people who line up and end up not getting one and anyone else like myself who is looking to buy one this weekend. Sure... I ordered one online (which the original 3-5 day shipping time) but there should be no reason why I can't go out and buy one at a store. This is a known product with a known customer base... just like iPods, there should be enough to go around... Apply is only hurting itself and its consumers (well... not really hurting itself considering people will still keep coming back regardless of the NBE... Negative Buying Experience).

Thursday, March 3, 2011

Don't believe the haters... Apple will win the Pad Wars this year.

First off, let me put this out there... I am a PC. I've only recently purchased my first Mac (a 13" MacBook Air) which I have BootCamped and loaded Win7 on.

But, I do recognize the success of Apple (I've avoided purchasing an iPod) and their ability to define and lead markets. While I also do not like closed systems, there are pros to that and it is impossible to not recognize what this has done to the smartphone market and now the tablet market.

I just want to address many comments going on in the blogosphere about how the iPad2 is only an incremental update and that it will not do well because of that.

I don't agree.

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

2011: Year of the iPad 2?

So it's finally out, Apple just announced their iPad 2:


Engadget did live blog coverage (best one out there in my opinion):


And a follow-up article:


While Apple will have more competition this year:

- Samsung's 7" Galaxy Tab and 10" Tab 2 (and a rumored 8.9" Tab)
- Motorola's 10.1" Xoom (w/ Android 3.0 aka Honeycomb)
- HP's WebOs 10" TouchPad
- RIM's 7" PlayBook
- Windows 7 tablets

I still think the iPad 2 will outsell them all (maybe even combined). They have an established consumer base, a huge headstart (90% of tablet market), more apps and a great distribution channel (Apple stores and all other retailers).

While it's not a big jump from the original iPad, there are updates (the dual-core processor and cameras), along with the aesthetic improvements (thinner and lighter) that are enough despite the lack of some wants (Retina Display, SD card or USB ports).

I expect lines outside the doors on March 11 again (and a shortage of the white ones)... and whether you like Apple or not, you can't argue against their ability to define and lead a market category.


More on why I think the iPad2 will outsell the original iPad and all the competitors: