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September 16, 2011

2

200 Million iPads

by Dan

About a month ago, I mentioned in a meeting at work (and later tweeted) that I believed Apple would sell about 200 million iPads by the end of 2012. Brief awkward silence. Then I was asked to send out the details of how I’d arrived at that number.

Honestly, at that point, I’d just eyeballed the sales trends. As I opened up a spreadsheet, I really hoped my estimate would hold up. :)

The first iPad went on sale on April 3, 2010. Here are Apple’s official iPad sales numbers:

At this point, we only have one year-over-year growth number for comparison. That’s fairly weak evidence on which to predict the future. But this is just for fun and games, right?

Assuming that the growth rate remains consistent, here is what iPad sales will look like:

  • Jul to Sep 2011: 11.8 million (actual result was 11.1 million)
  • Oct to Dec 2011: 20.7 million (actual result was 15.4 million)
  • Jan to Mar 2012: 13.2 million
  • Apr to Jun 2012: 26.1 million
  • Jul to Sep 2012: 33.3 million
  • Oct to Dec 2012: 58.4 million

Estimated iPad sales through 2012

192 million iPads by the end of 2012. Apple is selling every iPad they can make so these numbers may be limited by Apple’s ability to meet demand.

Put another way, here are the yearly totals:

  • 2010: 14.8 million
  • 2011: 46.4 million (actual result was 40.1 million)
  • 2012: 131.0 million

That’s the beginning of a very fast growth curve. There are a few others who agree.

Apple will report their next financial results in mid-October. Then we’ll have two data points.

Disclosure: I now own some AAPL stock.

2 Comments
  1. Oct 18 2011

    Apple just released their quarterly results for July to September. They sold 11.2 million iPads.

    http://www.apple.com/pr/library/2011/10/18Apple-Reports-Fourth-Quarter-Results.html

    We now have two data points. If we average the year-over-year growth rate, my new estimate is 183 million by December 2012. That’s not too far from the original 192 million. I’ll wait another quarter before adjusting my claim.

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