Apple sells 3 million iPads, iPad mini tablets in first weekend

Apple sells 3 million iPads, iPad mini tablets in first weekend

Summary: While many are still suffering in the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy, Apple still reported a new sales "record" only three days after the latest iPad mini launched in stores.


Apple said it sold three million new iPads since the latest tablets -- the fourth-generation iPad, and the 7-inch iPad mini -- were launched late last month. 

No doubt at least one person will be pleased -- ahem.

The company's press release landed this morning after the first weekend the shiny rectangles went on sale, in which Apple called the feat a new "weekend record." That said, many who pre-ordered are still waiting for their new tablets to arrive, while Wi-Fi + Cellular versions are still due to ship in "mid-November."

Apple chief executive Tim Cook said in prepared remarks:

We set a new launch weekend record and practically sold out of iPad minis. We're working hard to build more quickly to meet the incredible demand... We set a new launch weekend record and practically sold out of iPad minis. We're working hard to build more quickly to meet the incredible demand.

"Practically sold out," perhaps, but Apple didn't provide numbers. The figures weren't broken down, only that the fourth-generation iPad and new iPad mini sales combined reached 3 million. 

The technology giant said this doubles the previous first weekend milestone of 1.5 million Wi-Fi only models sold for the iPad 3 in mid-March

But the results were not as grand as previous launches, thanks to Hurricane Sandy kicking ten bells out of the Eastern Seaboard, causing widespread power outages in major metropolitan areas, which understandably left the vast majority more focused on getting their lives back on track than buying the latest Apple product.

Analysts had expected anything from 800,000 devices sold to 1.5 million in the first weekend. Piper Jaffray analyst Gene Munster saw his initial estimate double across the new iPad range, in spite of New York's "unique circumstances" due to Sandy, and "two of the five Apple Stores in New York are closed due to power outages."

He said on Friday:

[We] continue to feel comfortable with our 1-1.5 million iPad Mini launch weekend estimate and 5 million estimate for the December quarter.

But we have no idea how many iPad mini tablets were sold, likely due to poor initial performance. We'll likely get a first hit of iPad mini sales breakdowns after Christmas at Apple's first quarter earnings.

Munster added:

The reason we expect fewer iPad Minis compared to the [third-generation iPad] is because of the lack of the wireless option and newness of the smaller form factor for consumers... We believe that the smaller tablet market has lacked the presence of a smaller iPad that brings the Apple ecosystem and brand to that market.

Apple's share price has nigh on collapsed in the past few days, particularly since the media event late last month in which the new range of iPads and Macs were announced. A management shake-up didn't help the share price much, either. The firm was trading up by more than 1.5 percent at times during pre-market trading this morning on the new, edging back to its once-already-seen historic $600 a share mark.

Image credits: James Martin/CNET; Google Finance.

Topics: Apple, iOS, iPad, Tablets, Tech Industry

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  • sold 3 millions overpriced 2 year old device

    time to sell you apple stocks . future outlook looks gloomy . apple inc tablets lose market shares . apple stocks continue to slide . investors are worried and trying to hold after the holidays . while losing millions during the holidays . sold 3 millions overpriced 2 year old device . apple probably fudging the number to increase stocks . will wait for upgrade version of the mini in a few months along with ipad 5 (with cheaper screen brand not from samsung) and bigger screen iphone 6 .
    • This "old" devise is dramatically faster in graphics than any rivals

      ... like Google Nexus 7, Kindle Fire HD, Galaxy Tab 8.9 or whatever small tablets:

      A5 SoC in iPad 2 and iPad mini is clocked 20% higher than the same chip in iPhone 4S, so you have to apply a coefficient to results in the diagrams in that link above. Rival devices are in the dust, far behind.

      As to this article, Zack strangely takes word "records" in inverted commas, even though it is real absolute records in sales. Notice that Apple never report just "shipments", it reports real sales.
      • I can explain that

        The reason why I used (what we call) "quote marks" is because I was in fact referencing a quote, which can be found quite clearly in the article.
        • Then more words than one had to be quoted, because otherwise all ...

          ... articles about whatever records would sound this dubious like this one.

          There is always source to quote, but in articles authors do not usually single out words like "record" unless it is questionable.

          Not that I am against anyone considering whatever companies claim, including Apple, questionable, but this at least should be explained. And if the information is not questioned, then it might be better to use a wider quote than just word "record" or no quote marks at all.
  • Apple sells 3 million iPads, iPad mini tablets in first weekend

    That number seems pretty low for an Apple product. After all we did have one person on here telling us that the iPhone 5 sold 5million on its first weekend.
    Loverock Davidson-
    • IPad Mini is a hit!

      Where are those Microsoft tablet sales numbers?
      • hit?

        How many people buy this thing? Do you have any numbers? Becouse you must have if you saying "ipad mini is a hit".
        For now I don't see much buzz arround this toy, its big, not comfortable to using one hand, even motorolla xoom [8.1 inch] is much better to use with one hand.
        And why you ask about MS tablest? Surface and other RT devices have different form factor, why instead you don't ask about Kindle Fire HD? Kindle is here main competitor to ipad mini, and is much much better.
      • Well, over 4 million copies of Windows 8 sold

        beats the combined total for new iPad 4 and iPad mini.

        And why no numbers for the iPad mini? What is Apple hiding?
        William Farrel
        • Only by 1 million

          If I was MS, I would be really scared that the post PC is on the way to killing the PC.
          • Why should they be worried?

            They are now on post PC devices.
            William Farrel
          • Windows 8 is the definition of a sustaining tech PC device.

            Nuff said on that.
          • I don't think you understand what post-pc device means William.

            Nor does Microsoft. The closes thing to a "post-PC" device coming out of Microsoft camp is their Surface RT. But even with that, the RT still feels and looks like its more related to PCs than post-pc (iPad, Android tablets). The Surface pretty much requires a keyboard for use, UI is complex with gesture overkill, two user environment (Win8/Metro). Throwing Windows 8 on different form-factor does not make it post-pc. These "devices" will still be counted as PCs every quarter.
        • you mean

          microsoft sold 4 millions copies with the help of
          Dell, Acer, hp & lenovo when apple sold 3M by itself...

          I say thats pretty good.
          Anthony E
          • @Anthony E

            Wrong on many counts.
            1. those 4 million copies are the Upgrade to OS from Windows 7, Vista or XP.
            2. Dell, Lenovo and HP aren't selling Windows 8 Upgrades, it is Microsoft.
            3. We still don't know how PCs with Windows 8 are sold from OEMs like Dell, Lenovo, HP, ASUS, Sony, Acer/Gateway/eMachines etc.
            4. Surface RT is sold by Microsoft here in US and elsewhere and in Asia they are not by Microsoft, a different company(ies). We don't know the sales figures of Surface RT. But if you look at Microsoft online store, they are complete out of 32GB without touch cover. If that is any indication, it could be selling well and meeting Microsoft's push of 3 to 5 millions by the end of holiday 2012.
            Ram U
    • Wonder how many Surface ReTards were sold the 1st weekend

      somebody knows? Even don't want to answer...
      • @theo_durcan

        Hi, it seems you are looking for information from me. :D. Even though I don't work for Microsoft in any shape or form, I just try to help you out.
        Look at Microsoft Online store, they are totally out of stock of 32GB Surface RT.

        If that is any indication, Microsoft is on track to meet their 3 millions to 5 millions by the end of holiday 2012.

        Hope that helps.
        Ram U
    • Did you read the actual report? This number is TWICE higher than the ...

      ... previous tablet launch in the March of this year.
      • So how many of them where iPad Mini's

        I don't see numbers on that, just 'twice as many devices then last year'.
        William Farrel
        • You can guess quite roughly how much, considering that Apple spent like one

          ... minute of 1.5 hours of presentation to announce 4th generation iPad, so there is no serious "boom" for this model -- yes, it became twice as fast, has faster Wi-Fi and new connector, but people are not really seeing this as truly new model; just an update.

          So of those 3 million new Wi-Fi models sold as much as half could be easily iPad mini models, and 1.5 million iPad 4 (Wi-Fi; cellular version is not yet available) models -- fitting March start result thanks to holiday season higher demand.
          • "Could be"

            Tim cook "could be" an alien, Windows 8 sales "could be" double what they announced, and Apple "could be" lying.

            People are asking for numbers, not "could be" guesses.
            William Farrel