back to article Netbook sales shrivel in face of Apple iPad

A new study indicates that the Apple iPad will shrivel the netbook market. Fortune points us to a March study from financial house Morgan Stanley and research outfit Alphawise that says 44 per cent of US consumers planning to buy an iPad will opt for the Jobsian tablet instead of new netbook or notebook. As you might expect, …


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  1. Anonymous Coward
    Gates Horns


    Good news all around.

    First of all - some discounted bargains to be had.

    Second - the creeping idiocy of "cheap small computer" becoming an expensive white elephant for sake of it running the latest and greatest Microsoft system will most likely be rolled back. The success of a non-Windows device in this niche does not bode good news for Redmond. The OEMs have obeyed so far - Linux devices had their specs tweaked to make to be same cost as Windows. In the face of a market collapse they may ignore the whip from Redmond in favour of some experiments with alternatives. That is definitely good news. We have had nearly two decades of "micro and soft innovation". Enough is enough.

    Three - the ability of the iPad to play video for hours with flying colours may finally make Intel stop deliberately crippling the platform with broken chipsets as well as make it stop preventing others like Nvidia from fixing this problem.

    So if the iPad has really had this effect and this is not all hype I may as well pour myself something nice and celebrate.

    1. Maliciously Crafted Packet
      Thumb Up

      Agreed... this is fantastic news.

      This will boost Mac market share which has been held back by the inclusion of el cheapo netbooks of late.

      Now the Windows world will have to compete on a more level playing field weighted at the quality end of the market. Not good news for those all important Gartner figures.

  2. Will Godfrey Silver badge

    Cause and effect?

    has anyone considered that the reduction in netbook GROWTH may be simply down to the possibility that everyone who wanted one has one. Simple market saturation. The tablet market is empty so it's reasonable to assume that there would be one or two sales there. I don't see any reason at all to assume there is a connection.


    I'm very happy with my eeePC901 running ubuntu 10.4 and see no likelihood of me replacing it any time soon - it's too damn useful.

  3. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Shows that most iPad users are consumers.

    Those of us that need to use full sized productivity programs will end up using netbooks or laptops. Others can manage just fine with their fingers on a touchpad. Of course, it could also mean that the netbook market is saturated. It's not as if they do the Apple thing and bring out incremental changes every year and significant marketing knowhow to entice buyers to upgrade.

    This comment was brought to you via a netbook and a 3.5G (21Mbps) USB modem.

  4. Anonymous Coward
    Paris Hilton

    Can't blame them.

    Can you?

  5. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Makes sense

    If you accept that a netbook is only really a document viewer and not an appropriate productivity tool, why not just ditch the keyboard and go back to using a PDA, albeit one with a high resolution screen you don't need to squint into.

    The only reason the iPad's so big is because desktop screens are so massive. When desktops were 800x600, it made sense to have a 240x320 PDA. Now they're 1920x1080 and above, you need a PDA with a 1024x768 screen. But pixels small enough to make that fit in your pocket are just stupid, so the device needs to be tablet sized.

    Someone should make a tablet with a handle. You could then choose a photo of the side of a briefcase as your screensaver as you carry it around, in an ironic way like those mobile phone ringtones of a 1940s bell ring.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Paris Hilton

      It does indeed

      Were I into the market for a netbook then the iPad is at top of the list.

      On the other hand time, circumstance and opportunity presented me with a chance to reinvigorate my HP iPAQ 2210.

      It was far ahead of its time with a rather nascent but underinvested (HP are u listening?) app store that was so developer centric it hurt.

      Nonetheless my GPS (streets and terrain) with easy Word and Excel documents (encrypted circa 2003) appear to compliment my kit setup quaite naicely :-)

      On the plus side HP has a fantastic resource centre so I was able to access easily-peasily all systematic updates for the 2210.

      (For the newer folk: an hp2210 is a pocket PC running Windows CE that active syncs to a PC.

      It has encryption on some but not all applications (well, okay Word and Excel?) and working methods usually are:

      have one working program on the PC

      have another working program on the pocket PC

      use Active Sync to keep these up to date

      Since 2003 my data on the 2210 has remained robust (so far anyway) and I was able to restore backup stuff from as far back as 2004 (Fugawi maps = yeeuch!) while in the same time at least 3 PCs died leaving me in a proper quandary (OS X to the rescue!)

  6. Dazed and Confused


    So lets get this straight, only 44% of people planning to buy an iPad are planning to buy an iPad instead of an netbook.

    So anyone planning to buy a netbook isn't a candidate for this piece of market research.

    Makes you wonder what percentage of people looking to buy a netbook are planning to buy a netbook instead of an iPad.

    1. Anonymous Coward


      I could not have said it better myself --------------- what was it that you said???

      (Very funny!)

  7. DingoDog

    More factual nonsense!

    No one has mentioned that the sales of netbooks slumped after the Xmas period which is normal is it not?? More people would be buying them in the many months before Xmas.

    Looks like more stories made up to fit round the apple propaganda machine!

  8. Anonymous Coward
    Thumb Down

    slow news day?

    another f$%&*ng iPad 'news' article. come on Reg - or are you all turning into Jobsian love-boys? still waiting for your free review copies?

  9. Watashi

    Statistics and lies

    Is El Reg now the official sponsor of Apple products all of a sudden?

    There are three types of portable computers: netbook, laptop, iPad. Without knowing what laptop sales growth is like, we have no idea what impact the iPad is having on netbook. For all we know, most of those deciding not to buy a netbook are buying a full Windows 7 laptop instead.

  10. Rattus Rattus

    There are so many ways

    those statistics could be interpreted. Post-Christmas sales slump, market already saturated, or the fact that Microsoft has been pushing Windows so heavily for netbooks which is bound to make them run sluggishly, further reducing their appeal.

    As for myself, I hardly ever use my netbook since I got my Nexus One - I can more conveniently do on that most of what I used my netbook for. An iPad wouldn't have been able to replace my netbook like that since I do a fair bit of multitasking.

    The iPad probably has contributed to the decline of netbook sales, but it's far from being the only factor.

  11. J 3

    Fine with me

    I already have my trusty netbook, or as I prefer to call it, mini-laptop. :-)

    I'd like to know if an iPad would allow me to do what I'm doing this week: attending a course on bioinformatics, and using the Eee 1000HE (running Ubuntu) to run the virtual machine (also Ubuntu), used in the course. </rhetorical question, because everyone knows the answer>

    (the instructors distributed the image at the course's first morning, so everyone would have exact the same environment and follow the same steps, of course)

    Obviously it does not run as fast as the virtual machines running in the other people's big Macs (and a few PCs). But that has only made a little difference for one application so far, which ran about half as fast as in my neighbors old Macbook Pro. The time spent waiting for the programs to run was filled by the instructors talking and questions and all anyway.

  12. A 31


    30% of road accident are caused by drunk drivers

    ... this means that 70% are caused by non-drinkers !!!

    Well the drunks have it ! they cause less accidents than the others !!

    44% of what ?

  13. RayG


    A year ago I couldn't have justified the cost of a Core i7 desktop; this year it offered the most bang for my buck. On the other hand, my almost 18-month-old netbook is indistinguishable from my wife's 2-month-old netbook apart from a few gig of hard disk and all the scratches... and cost about the same. So surely a major effect here is that, unlike desktops or big laptops, there's not much reason to upgrade a netbook?

  14. Anonymous Coward

    baaaaaa! More sheep for the slaughter

    When will they ever learn?

    Sorry, that should be... are they CAPABLE of learning?

  15. Stuart Halliday

    Pensioners want one

    I work in a major UK electronic store. No, not in the Dixon group.

    I've been surprised by the number of retired gentlemen who are quite excited of the prospect of getting their mitts on an iPad.

    Most find netbooks and the like too complex to use.

    Shame we don't sell them.

  16. joejack

    No need to ditch the keyboard

    Apple implemented the bluetooth keyboard stack for the iPad. Time to dig those targus/stowaway folding keyboards out of the closet. They're also backporting it to iPhone.

    Are you listening, Google???

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