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consumer PC market isn’t floundering because of Apple’s iPad tablet, and the
rate of cannibalization is actually declining among more recent purchasers,
according to market research company The NPD Group’s “Apple iPad Owner Study
II” report.

to the report, only 14 percent of early iPad adopters (iPad owners of six
months or more) abandoned a PC purchase for an iPad, and that dropped to
just 12 percent of iPad owners who purchased over the past holiday season. In
fact, cannibalization of netbooks is actually down by 50 percent among more
recent iPad buyers, when compared with early adopter buyers.

explosion of computer sales when Windows 7 launched, as well as the huge
increase in netbook sales at that time, are much more to blame for weak consumer
PC sales growth than the iPad,” said Stephen Baker, vice president of industry
analysis at NPD. “Overall it appears that the vast majority of iPad purchases
to-date have been incremental to the consumer technology industry.” 

to NPD’s Retail Tracking Service, the under $500 segment of the Windows
consumer notebook market grew by 21 percent for the six months ending March
2011 to become the largest segment of the consumer notebook market. “The
conventional wisdom that says tablet sales are eating into low-priced notebooks
is most assuredly incorrect,” Baker said. “The over $500 Windows consumer
notebooks market is where PC sales have been impacted the most, with a 25
percent decline from October 2010 to March 2011.”

said it’s more than likely that iPad sales added billions of dollars to the
industry’s coffers after years of ASP declines draining the market. According
to the report, nearly 75 percent of consumers who bought an iPad for themselves
said they had no intentions of buying anything else, making all of those iPad
purchases incremental sales volume.

report found that additional volume has spurred the development of new
accessories opportunities that also serve to direct more money into the retail
market. Approximately 83 percent of iPad owners have purchased an accessory for
their iPad, with cases being the most popular. The sales opportunities are
being spread across all manufacturers and retailers, not just Apple, the report
noted. Approximately 50 percent of all cases are non-Apple branded, and
according to the report about 50 percent of cases and more than 60 percent of
screen protectors were purchased at a different store than where the consumer
purchased their iPad.

consumers looked far and away to find the right product to accessorize their
iPad, the expansion of distribution in the fourth quarter for the device itself
had little impact on sales shares. Best Buy and Apple sold three-fourths of all
devices during the holiday period. Comparatively speaking, the carrier
stores had much weaker results, accounting for just 3 percent of sales.
Clearly, consumers’ indifference to 3G connectivity was a driving factor as
sales for the basic $499 WiFi-only iPad increased by almost 33 percent during
the holiday period to nearly one-in-three sales.

just do not see the utility in 3G connectivity. There’s an added expense for
the device and for the service, something a majority of iPad owners aren’t
willing to pay,” Baker explained. “Since most iPads rarely venture away from home,
the value of a 3G connection is likely to diminish, especially as other tablets
enter the market and pricing starts to fall. When every penny counts, features
that aren’t core to the user become increasingly marginalized as manufacturers
fight for every sale.”