Apple sold nearly 15 million iPads last year

In case you had any doubt that the Apple iPad was a success, Apple just released its quarterly report for the period ending December 25th and the company sold 7.33 million iPads during the quarter. That’s not the number for the whole year… that’s just the fiscal quarter.

During the previous quarter, Apple sold 4.19 million iPads, which was actually below analyst estimates, but still a pretty good number if you ask me. The quarter before that saw 3.27 million iPads sold.

If you do the  math, that means Apple has sole 14.79 million iPads since launching the tablet in mid-2010. No matter where you fall on the tablets-are-useful/tablets suck, tablets-are-killing-netbooks/no-they’re-not, tablets-have-capacitive-displays/tablets-have-active-digitizers debates, you have to admit 14.79 million of anything sold is a pretty good number for a single company.

2011 will likely shape up to be the year when Apple starts to face real competition in the consumer tablet space from companies such as Motorola, RIM, Asus, and HP. It will be interesting to see if the rising tide floats all boats and tablets start taking over the computer/consumer electronics space, or if the competition starts eating into iPad sales.

  • Michaelpaulpenang

    So how Brad, will you finally admit the humble netbook you were so ardent about and confident that it would never slow down is sales is now virtually dead?

    • http://liliputing.com/ Brad Linder

      Just because one product is selling well, it doesn’t mean that another
      product necessarily has to die.

      • WillSabillon

        Brad do you remember how many eee sold Asus after the first year? Just to have something to compare to

      • WillSabillon

        about an (un)related topic, what do you think the new XO laptop 1.75 would mean to the market? to the wintel vs armdroid thingy?

      • Anonymous

        It will mean nothing to the market since the OLPC project is all but forgotten.

      • Anonymous

        Hardly forgotten, they’re still advancing and are switching to a ARM based solution this year with even lower power requirements than previous versions of the system but they are mainly intended for poor countries. So it’s more like it’ll have little impact because it doesn’t directly compete with the established market.

      • Anonymous

        “off the radar” = “forgotten”. OLPC made news with their G1G1 program. (I was a G1G1D1 participant) The diverging paths of NN and SugarLabs have blurred a previously well-defined vision. When NN shared his vision for the XO-2, he sparked new interest in the OLPC project, but when he backed away from that to release XO-1.5 he lost that buzz. And then when 1.75 was announced, everyone pretty much wrote off the OLPC project.
        The project overall is NOT in a better place than it was 2 years ago.

      • Anonymous

        I disagree, lower power consumption puts it in a much better position than it was 2 years ago and next year they will even be making a dedicated tablet version. It’s just limited by available technology for lowering its build cost but it’s not off the radar for the people it’s actually intended for!

        Perhaps your expectations were just too high to expect it to spread into other markets besides the countries that have few options. When efforts to do so was just to boost interest and catch the attention of those it could help.

        Education products especially rarely get much press or spread far from the core purpose of the intended market.

      • Anonymous

        Companies rarely give exact sales figures and world sales figures usually get lumped together for all devices in a category combined.

        The iPad was also released closer to the beginning of the year versus the Eee PC, which was released near the end of 2007. So had more time to rack up total year sales figures. But for the end of 2007 Asus sold over 350,000 Eee PC’s and presumably they sold somewhere around 5-7 million for 2008.

        But I’d would advise against any direct comparisons. When Asus introduced the Eee PC most people had never heard of Asus before, let alone knew what a netbook was.

        This compared to Apple, which is well known and few companies can even hope to compete with their marketing power.

    • Anonymous

      Many are confusing slowing of growth with the eminent decline of netbooks when the facts are they are still selling well. By the end of 2011 it is estimated total world sales will exceed 50 million and that will be up from last year.

      So it would be more accurate to describe it that netbooks have simply reached market saturation. All the companies that would make netbooks already are. So there isn’t the massive increase in production that would come from a new company getting into the market.

      While most people interested in netbooks already have netbooks, leaving fewer newer customers to grow the market, and this is shifting focus to upgrades and replacements.

      The thing to remember is this is the case for most products that have been in the market for more than a few years. So it’s normal and not a sign by itself that netbooks are going anywhere. Anymore than notebooks are going anywhere anytime soon.

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_RTHQVKFKMECD5OEURBPO5KVBD4 francis

    First netbooks, then tablets are becoming the new mobile computing device of choice..

    Let me guess,, next people will clamor for tablets with slide-out keyboards! Ergo…

  • lemon

    Congrats to Apple! Awesome, 15 million iPads last year, so much!
    But I’m not surprised. As Apple creates a tablet market, so it’s no need to scared of the competitors, and now as the analytics read iPad has a 87% marketshare, I believe the tablet market might be more competitive, but, in any case, iPad will dominate in 2011. Do hope the iPad 2 will be spectacular.

    I’m waiting for iPad2. if Apple really do release a greater than Full HD screen on the iPad 2, then amazing! Even though now the 1gen iPad is also not bad with 9.7-inch high-resolution screen, perfect to me for watching HD movies, music videos(though sometimes need the help from iFunia video converter as lack of flash support) and playing around with thousands of iPad apps and iPad games.
    P.S. watch movies and vieos on iPad freely:
    http://www.ifunia.com/ipad-column/index.html

  • Monkeyking

    In other news Campbell Soup sold a record amount of canned pasta despite recalling 15 million pounds of SpaghettiOs with meatballs after a cooker malfunctioned at one of the company’s plants in Texas and left the meat undercooked.

    Maybe next year Apple will recall 15 million iPads…

  • Bdshark

    Wow, 15 million iPads! That’s like New York and LA combined…and the rest of the world could care less!