128GB iPad now on sale: Will professionals bite?

128GB iPad now on sale: Will professionals bite?

Summary: At current NAND prices, 128GB costs approximately $80, but Apple charges a whopping $300 compared to the base 16GB model, which means an additional $220 in revenue per sale.

(Credit: Apple)

The 128GB iPad has gone on sale, but can Apple convince people to pay notebook prices for a tablet?

The high-capacity iPad has gone on sale for $799 for the Wi-Fi only model, and $929 for the cellular-equipped model. Both models are showing as being available in 1 to 3 business days.

According to a company press release, Apple is hoping that the new high-capacity model will appeal to enterprises, educators, artists, and other professionals who need the additional capacity for capacity-consuming content, not limited such as 3D CAD files, X-rays, film edits, music tracks, blueprints, videos, and service manuals.

But Apple has attached a significant dollar value to owning such a high-capacity tablet.

For example, compare it to the 11-inch MacBook Air with a 128GB solid-state drive, which costs only $1,099. Here you are getting a complete notebook for only $400 premium over the Wi-Fi only iPad.

So, Apple has delivered a high-capacity, premium-priced iPad. Now all that remains to be seen is whether the right people can be tempted to part with their money in exchange for the extra capacity.

While there's no doubt that the extra storage will come in useful to those who find 64GB restrictive, Apple is making buyers pay over the odds for the capacity. At current NAND prices, 128GB costs approximately $80, but Apple charges a whopping $300 compared to the base 16GB model, which means an additional $220 in revenue per sale.

Compare this to cloud storage, which is relatively cheap, and thanks to high-speed data connections, data stored in the cloud can feel as though it is stored locally on the device.

The question, as always, comes down to weighing up price verses the gain. I'd personally love a 128GB iPad, because with that sort of storage I could worry far less about storage space. That said, at $929 for the cellular model, the price tag is far too steep for me as an end consumer. However, if I could make that additional 64GB work for me, and ultimately pay for itself in some way, I wouldn't hesitate in throwing down the cash.

There's no right or wrong; just what works for people and what doesn't.

Topics: Apple, Cloud, Hardware, iPad, Mobility, Tablets, Education

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  • Nice but need more.

    I'll just keep using my 3rd Gen until they come out with a 256GB model. My music collection alone is 150GB. My current 64GB is constantly full, but I want my next one to be a huge upgrade, not just double.
    • Why wait

      when you can buy tablet whit card reader and add 128GB micro sd card, you can change them --cards-- like a gloves... and no one rip you here like apple does.
      • re: why wait

        Perhaps because nobody sells 128GB microSD cards?
        Or if they become available, the price will be too high?
        • More Than $929?

    • music files

      I can't imagine maintaining a music collection of files on a single device anymore. I used to try to do that but now I use subscription service for $10mo (rhapsody) and have my music in the cloud. I was spending countless hours organizing and tagging everthing under the sun. In the end most of that is all gone, up in the cloud, with a CD collection of just the best stuff you'd actually want to own and be proud to have on a shelf. Now I access pretty much any music I'd want from any PC or mobile device anywhere.
    • Cloud service?

      Put them into the Cloud.
  • you mean

    its costs $80 when you buy one....

    Not when you buy 10 millon.... then it probably costs about $40
    • Well you hit it on the head

      Admittedly by accident, but the excess price can be explained by supply and demand.

      Apple are looking to maintain profit margins. The 128gb model is not expected to be a huge seller; all those people filling up their 64gb's - hint few are. Therefore apple try to maintain the same profit on fewer units sold

      It's the reason that when I worked in a kitchen as a student a new grill cost 11 grand... Something similar from currys was probably about 300. Sure it was built to a different spec and usage, but do you really think it cost over 30x as much to build? No.

      So yes it's expensive, and no I won't be getting on, but there are business reasons behind the price. On the plus side it will force the competition to up their internal storage; app management across sd cards is a pain.
    • $80

      It probably costs $80 for thousands or more chips. You can hardly buy 128Gb high speed flash for such price in single quantities.
      • $80

        If you can buy a 128gb mSata drive on Amazon for $122 in single piece orders, I have real trouble believing Apple can't get it in volume for $80 (or even less).
  • Hmm....

    looks like Apple is well on its way to becoming a "Me Too" company!
  • For the fools like the members in the 'Cloggedbottom' club

    The fools will definitly bite...

    Is it that hard to put an SD card slot in an iPhone or iPAD...NO.... but if they do they can't rip-off the fools...Business or Greed?
    • in defence of apple

      to have a slot introduces a whole new can of worms, so to speak. The less inputs to the system that are beyond their control the easier it is for them. Its a security and stability risk as windows knows full well in for example viruses from USB sticks taking over a power plant. I would argue that for a tablet the simpler the better. However apple's greed is proven by what they charge for internal flash. The price differential proves it. Unacceptable, and they have thrown around the term "greedy" regarding the competition. But that's OK, isn't it? Apple loves its customers and really, truly cares about its products! To quote Alfred E Newman - Bleeecchh! But MS is no better. I have never seen two better examples of greed.
  • Easy Answer

    The iPad is an entertainment device. Not a PC killer. Not a profession device.
    Sean Foley
    • almost total BS!

      Yes the ipad can be used, and is in fact a bloody good entertainment device, but then again so is your average PC. And it is absolutely not a PC killer, it doesn't have hands for any kind of weapon. Though it is getting better at replacing them : ).

      But it most definitely is a Professional device, that is it is very capable of being used as a professional device. And is being used by a fairly large amount of people as one, quite successfully.

      written and posted, oddly enough, on an ipad. It could just as easily have been written on my galaxy note. So its not just an apple thing. It's about choice, enjoy.
  • 128GB iPad now on sale: Will professionals bite?

    Nope. Not worth it for what they are charging.
  • Competition Is Good

    Glad to see that Apple is continuing to improve its iPads. With two "gorillas in the room" (Apple and Microsoft) it will be interesting to see what happens. Pity, that Microsoft with its new Windows-8 alienated its laptop and desktop users. When they shop for a tablet, who will they chose, having been treated as second class users?
    • Natively Supported: 2TB @ 6GB/s Micro SDXC

      capability as found on the Surface Pro is a real deal breaker for me. I'd much rather spend an extra $929 for another 64GB - now that's a deal!

      Hey! Now wait just a minute! What did you put in my Kool-aid? It seems to have clogged my mind and is also having an adverse effect on my bottom!
  • 64 more GB of storage doesn't really change the functionality of the ipad

    I suspect that any professional that was interested in the ipad was not waiting for more storage to become available.

    Likewise I think any professional that saw 64gb extra storage as a must have either chose another platform with more storage options or wrangled something to work with the ipad like a wifi hard drive.

    I think this will appeal to consumers who want to store large amounts of music and movies, but the price tag really puts it in the "why buy this instead of something else" arena.
    • Is apple possibly running out of ideas?

      First it was white plastic and a new operating system, then it was fancy curves and faster chips. Now it's down to "improved" connectors and more DRAM. I think there's only so much you can "innovate" within the constraints of your last idea (i.e. IPAD). Apple TV is probably just as fizzly as everyone else's attempts at this market....heck, I'd bet on MS in that front just because the XBOX is already 1/2 way there (and has been for a couple of years now). More RAM at outrageous (!) prices. You know, if it were anybody but Apple there would be a revolt.