Ars: iPad might not be killing netbook sales

Discussion in 'iPad' started by r0k, May 7, 2010.

  1. r0k macrumors 68040


    Mar 3, 2008
    Ars Technica is hedging its bets on iPad killing off netbooks. The article speculates netbook sales decline around the release of iPad might just be a coincidence and perhaps the netbook market was already saturated. Finally, the author goes on to say it's too early to tell. Ya think? Full article here.

    While it's refreshing to see an article that seems objective, I'm pulling for the iPad to sell tens of millions of units before anybody has time to react. By the time there is an Android or Windows 7 tablet on the market, they will be relegated to single digit market share. I'd really like to see Apple on top of a computing platform. I'm not disappointed with how they handle being on top of music and I think Apple would do a better job at being top dawg (of tablets at least) than Microsoft has done.

    I know some will not remember, but there were all night launch parties for Windows 95. Microsoft had a real chance to make a go of it. But they were mired in inflexible corporate policies that perpetuated legacy code broken standards. The Microsoft creed was "embrace, extend, extinguish" and the things they did to force Internet Explorer down our throats were unconsionable.

    The closest Apple has come to this kind of juggernaut behavior is taking Adobe to task over Flash and I have to admit that for my usage Flash is a huge detractor from my internet experience. I have had ad blockers and flash blockers on every browser until Chrome and my usage of Chrome is diminished because it don't have credible flash blocking or ad blocking. Yes, I'd like to see what the computing world would be like with Apple on top. I think I'd like it, Ars Technica's bet hedging notwithstanding.
  2. H00513R macrumors 6502a


    Mar 12, 2010
    I honestly don't want Apple to become king of the hill. I think it'll stagnate their creativity and new products. When you are rolling in the money like MS has been doing for 25+ years your product releases slow down, your creativity stops and you are caught just updating your old products.
  3. raremage macrumors 6502a

    Nov 21, 2005
    Orlando, Florida
    You can disable the flash plugin though if you are so inclined, via Preferences | Under the Hood | Content Settings and the "Disable Individual Plugins" link.

    And back on topic, the real answer is the final conclusion - Too Early to Tell. We'll know more in a few months.
  4. Chupa Chupa macrumors G5

    Chupa Chupa

    Jul 16, 2002
    Why are people so obsessed with netbooks and the iPad's ability or inability to kill them off when they have nothing to do with each other. I see the articles and think I'd wonder what people would think if the Washington Post had a headline that said Soup Bowls Key In Sales Dip Of Steak Knives.
  5. r0k thread starter macrumors 68040


    Mar 3, 2008
    I don't see that as much with iPod as I would expect to see it if Zune was king. Apple could get lazier if they got larger but the corporate philosophy at Apple puts ease of use above convenience and preserving legacy code. If Apple started supporting all hardware with OS X, I could see that just about killing them. The fact they control hardware and software allows them to create a seamless, high quality end to end user experience. So while I agree there is some risk if Apple gets "too big", it is only a slight risk.

    I'd like to be able to "click to flash" or "adblock" rather than switching the thing off "forever" but it's good to know I can block it in plug ins settings. I think I'd rather do that than put up with the invasive ads like the ones that grow to fill your screen because you made the unfortunate mistake of mousing over them. Thanks.

    I owned an Acer Aspire One netbook before buying an iPad. If iPad had been available 24 months ago, I would never have bought a netbook. I'm probably in the minority, but the form factor of the computer is almost as important as what it can do.

    I've been going on in the forums about a "laptop replacement" since I got a Palm TX some years (decades?) ago. I find the current crop of notebooks to be too darn heavy with very few exceptions like the Macbook Air and a few Dell and Toshiba models.

    I believe there are 2 reasons why netbooks have done so well: cost and weight. Many people simply don't want to lug a 5 pound bowling ball around just so they can type or get on the internet, but smartphones and pda's fail to fully satisfy because of the tiny screens. For me, my AAO netbook failed for the same reason. It had 600 pixel vertical resolution and the darn "OK" button was always always always off the bottom edge of the screen and I was dealing with the mediocre trackpad on the AAO to fight my way down there just to click "OK". I admit YMMV when it comes to comparing netbooks with iPads, but for me they are very similar products and in my life they fulfill the same need: lightweight portable (almost) general purpose computing.

    Some of it is newness. It's a nice feeling having people come over to take a look at my iPad. Unlike my AAO, I expect to be using my iPad as heavily a year from now as I use it now. Before I got my iPad, my AAO had fallen into a rare and only on trips category of usage.

    BTW, have you seen the price of (Cutco) steak knives lately? :D
  6. kenmarable macrumors member

    Jun 11, 2007
    That's more reasonable. I remember the first articles I saw (probably even here) claiming that the iPad announcement caused a crash in netbook sales. The data graph show in all of them, however, was pretty clearly showing a massive drop a month or two before the announcement.

    Seemed more like a case of trying to fit reality to a theory than the other way around.
  7. wombat888 macrumors 6502a

    May 10, 2008
    The two are different in many ways, but they're similar in many ways, so I do think sales of iPads will have some effect on netbook sales. If for no other reason, than because you only need so many gadgets in your life. If you had an iPad and a netbook, how would you use both enough to justify the expense to yourself?

    However, there are a lot of people in the world ... and netbooks themselves are still pretty new, and viewed with suspicion and curiosity still by a lot of people. Both iPad sales and netbook sales can still grow because there is a lot of untapped market that could go to either iPads or netbooks.

    I think iPads will slow the growth of netbook sales by taking some of that market, but I think netbook sales will continue to grow despite this as they also grab some of the untapped market.
  8. GamecockMac macrumors 6502a


    Oct 20, 2005
    Columbia, SC
    Yeah, because there wasn't even a hint of the iPad before the official announcement. :rolleyes:
  9. mackworth macrumors member

    Aug 4, 2008
    I had a dell mini 10v before my iPad. I think both serve a purpose. I was going to use my dell mini for work on the train but found that eclipse/tomcat etc was just unusable (even with 2GB of ram) mostly because of the small screen/poor trackpad/slow processor. All I ended up using it for was browsing, email, etc. I sold it to buy an Ipad.

    I figured if I all I was going to do was browsing/email/games/movies, I would rather have a ipad which is smaller/lighter/and has better battery life.

    But I do see a place for the netbook. I think if I had do more typing.
  10. tuamtuem macrumors member

    Sep 4, 2009
    I think iPad can finally kill netbook sales.

    The objective of using netbook is that it allows you to access into the internet. This is definitely truth because when you ask people that why you purchase such this thing (no iPad at that time). First answer you got was "Surfing the internet" or "checking e-mail".

    If you want only the internet, music, photo experience and playing games, iPad can provide such these things more than net book! (I don't think that you want to use your low spec netbook for implementing code or editing vdo). Apple doesn't want to make iPad as multi-purpose stuff, so they have to put all effort to make the necessary features to be better than netbook.
  11. flyingturtle macrumors regular

    Apr 7, 2010
    Yeah maybe netbooks might die, I doubt it. It will definitely lessen for sure as majority of things most people do, email, surfing, chatting, can be done on the iPad.

    What I think is important is that while the iPad might be eating into netbook sales, i'm sure in a year or two, there will be a health amount of tablet competitors, so iPad is destroying one market only to create another market for others -- which is a good thing. As someone else mentioned, competition is a good thing as it'll keep Apple creative and adding value while keeping prices affordable.

    I hope there is a wide variety of Android tablets, Windows tablets, etc so that it'll force Apple to keep out-doing it's competitors, which will in turn benefit the consumers, like us. =)

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