Yesterday, Apple announced the smaller, 7.9 inch, iPad mini. Prices were thrown a lot around beforehand: $199, $249, $329. Which one was it going to be? It turns out its the latter.
There were mixed reactions: right price, wrong price, Apple are idiots, the usual. I went through that thought process albeit the other way around in the space of a few hours. Let me take you through it.
Apple Are Idiots
Pricing a seven inch tablet for almost twice as much as rivals!? What were they thinking? This has got to be one of worst decisions ever made. How it is remotely competitive with the Nexus 7 and the Kindle Fire HD? Loads of people will refuse to buy it and settle for the much cheaper and similarly featured Nexus 7 or Kindle Fire HD. What’s more, it should have Retina.
It won’t be a disaster for Apple, but it could have priced it much better. It will still sell, but it won’t be the product that it would have been at a cheaper price, and you still can’t really put it in the same bracket as the Nexus 7 or Kindle Fire HD. Again, it should really feature a Retina display for that price, but some people won’t really care.
Hold on a second. People are going to buy these things anyway. Apple sold 5 million iPhones in the first weekend. Every new product Apple releases seems to break sales records. And Apple is a business. It wants to make money. But two and two together: it can get away with selling for a high price.
The number of people who will buy one will be ridiculous, whether it’s $200 or $400. So why make less money? It might sell less by increasing the price, but it’s all relative: just instead of there being a massive iPad mini shortage at launch, there will be a slightly smaller one. It doesn’t make any difference on paper to sales.
It will still sell more than the Nexus 7 and the Kindle Fire HD, who cares whether on paper the price isn’t competitive. Apple could sell a pile of dog crap at the moment.
The pricing definitely sucks for those of us who set our budget at under $300 for one, but the fact is loads of people didn’t and those people (of which there are millions) will still buy one. So what we think is irrelevant. The pricing just means different people will buy the iPad mini. Apple won’t care, it will just make more money in the process. It’s a win win.