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2 Million iPad Owners Can't Be Wrong

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The iPad is selling like iHotcakes.

Apple's (Nasdaq: AAPL  ) evolutionary -- if not outright revolutionary -- device continues to sell briskly. After selling a million units in its first month on the market, the pace continues. Apple revealed yesterday that it has now sold 2 million iPads, just days shy of completing its second month on the market.

To be fair, Apple did begin selling the device in certain international markets over the weekend. Yet this is still an impressive figure. We knew early adopters would step up to the plate in April, since Apple has a loyal and growing fan base. However, success in May, both domestically and abroad, wouldn't have been possible if the iPad had disappointed its first wave of buyers.

Weeks before the iPad hit the market, Apple's sales target was reportedly to ship an ambitious 10 million units during the 2010 calendar year. Analysts shook their heads, with folks from the likes of Kaufman Brothers and Needham figuring that Apple would be lucky if it moved half that many.

These days, the thought of moving 10 million iPads over nine months doesn't seem so outrageous, and analysts are falling over themselves to quickly revise targets upward. New international markets are coming online during what could have been a summer lull, and the device is sure to be the big-ticket item of choice during the holidays. Back-to-school season may deliver a little nibble, too.

Apple's press release claims that there are now 5,000 iPad-specific applications available for the device. Perhaps more importantly, most of the existing 200,000 App Store entries for the iPhone and iPod touch also work seamlessly with the iPad.

Yet there are challenges ahead. The $499 starting price means there won't be an iPad in every Christmas stocking, although the device is definitely going to eat into netbook sales. Sony (NYSE: SNE  ) and Microsoft (Nasdaq: MSFT  ) have priced their video-game consoles well below Apple's price points, but they, too, may feel the holiday pinch as consumers reorient their leisure time and spending dollars.

Apple won't have the tablet game to itself for long, either. Hewlett-Packard (NYSE: HPQ  ) is simply repositioning its Slate. Dell (Nasdaq: DELL  ) is going smaller with its Streak. Verizon (NYSE: VZ  ) has revealed that it's working with Google (Nasdaq: GOOG  ) on a tablet.

That kind of impending competition would send most companies curling up into fetal positions and sucking their thumbs. But this is Apple. Rival MP3 players didn't slow down the iPod, and new smartphone handsets have done little to slow down the iPhone.

The iPad will continue to sell well, even though now the pressure is now on Apple to see whether it can issue a "3 million iPads sold" press release by month's end.

Are you one of the 2 million iPad owners? Have you decided not to buy one? Share your thoughts in the comments box below.

Microsoft is a Motley Fool Inside Value recommendation. Google is a Motley Fool Rule Breakers selection. Apple is a Motley Fool Stock Advisor pick. Motley Fool Options has recommended a diagonal call position on Microsoft. Try any of our Foolish newsletter services free for 30 days.  

Longtime Fool contributor Rick Munarriz loves his iPad, but he's not totally against picking up a rival tablet if it's up to snuff. He's also part of the Rule Breakers newsletter research team, seeking out tomorrow's ultimate growth stocks a day early. He owns no shares in any of the companies in this story. The Fool has a disclosure policy.

Read/Post Comments (6) | Recommend This Article (8)

Comments from our Foolish Readers

Help us keep this a respectfully Foolish area! This is a place for our readers to discuss, debate, and learn more about the Foolish investing topic you read about above. Help us keep it clean and safe. If you believe a comment is abusive or otherwise violates our Fool's Rules, please report it via the Report this Comment Report this Comment icon found on every comment.

  • Report this Comment On June 01, 2010, at 1:49 PM, kristm wrote:

    Don't count on devices from HPalm, Dell, or Google/Verizon to do anything to Apple's iPad sales until they actually have a shipping product. So far all their announcements seem like promises and vaporware; they haven't even announced ship dates or prices yet on those devices. By the time they get anything on sale (if they ever do) Apple will be close to releasing the 2nd generation iPad.

  • Report this Comment On June 01, 2010, at 2:22 PM, mikecart1 wrote:

    There was a time when 2 million people in the world thought the world was flat.

    Game, set, match. mikecart1 proves another TMF wrong again! :D

  • Report this Comment On June 01, 2010, at 2:25 PM, deemery wrote:

    >Don't count on devices from HPalm, Dell, or Google/Verizon to do anything to Apple's iPad sales until they actually have a shipping product.

    I'd go further. Not only do they need a shipping product, it has to be better than the iPad. Not just cheaper, but better. That's the lesson from the iPhone success. As my buddy in Tokyo said, "We weren't sure about this, until we actually got a chance to use it. It's better than everything else out there."

  • Report this Comment On June 01, 2010, at 4:43 PM, Turfscape wrote:

    Here on the forums, people like to debate the impact of competition. The demise of Apple always seems to be at hand, according to posters everywhere, Apple should just hang it up and close down the factory because (company X) is putting out a similar product sometime in the future. Fortunately for investors, Apple keeps its focus on what it's doing...not what the competition is doing. They don't play the "me too" game. They don't compete on "just like their product, but less expensive". They do what they do...and they do it well.

  • Report this Comment On June 01, 2010, at 8:59 PM, ConstableOdo wrote:

    It is strange that the demise of Apple is always lurking. No matter how many products Apple is selling, no matter how many people say that Apple products are quality products and customer service is very good. It's always like, sure, they sold 2 million iPads, but it's just a passing fad. A passing fad like the iPod and iPhone was. Apple is doing OK today, but tomorrow they will fail. Just like that. Because for some reason consumers suddenly won't want quality products and good customer service.

    Yet there are people that claim that Microsoft and Windows can never die because that company is the biggest tech company in the world and all of Microsoft's products are products no one can live without. No company can ever come out with a product better than MS Office or an OS better than Windows 7. Why is that? Why is it that Microsoft can never fail and yet Apple is destined to fail?

    This just sounds crazy to me. Any company can make mistakes and fail. Microsoft included.

  • Report this Comment On June 01, 2010, at 9:33 PM, peterc48 wrote:

    The iPad is going to take the place of the majority of laptops. I would say at least 60% of computer users, probably more, use their computers for music, photos, internet surfing and email and the iPad is perfect for that.

    The only danger for Apple is the iPad cutting into their macbook sales.

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