Apple said it sold 13.3 million iPads in the second quarter of 2014, down more than 9 percent from the same period last year. It was the second consecutive quarter that Apple saw a decline in its iPad figures: Three months ago, the company reported a 16 percent decrease in sales.
So what is going on? Are consumers losing interest on Apple iPads?
One of the reasons could be the pricing. Apple simply doesn’t want to make any price adjustments, said Tero Kuittinen, managing director at Frank N. Magid Associates, a consulting firm. Compared to other tablets, iPads are more expensive, and that's a sticking point.
The least expensive full-sized iPad starts at US$ 399, while the most expensive model – the iPad Air, with 128GB of storage and cellular connectivity – will cost nearly US$ 1,000. The iPad Mini starts at US$ 299.
On the other hand, a decent Android tablet will cost consumers a little under US$ 200, and both Amazon's Kindle Fire HDX and Google's Nexus 7 (which CNET calls "the best Android tablet") start at US$ 229. Samsung even has 10-inch tablets – the same size as the iPad's screen – starting at US$ 299.
According to the technology research firm IDC, the average cost of tablets in the U.S. has decreased over the last two years, from US$ 476 in the first quarter of 2012 to US$ 378 in the first quarter of this year.
"They literally would rather let the volume decline than get competitive on pricing," Kuittinen said of Apple. "Even a year ago nobody thought that iPad sales would tank like this. It really has hit a brick wall."
Apple can afford to price iPhones way higher compared to iPads, but it doesn’t make sense apply premium pricing strategy for both gadgets simply because people upgrade their phones more frequently than their tablets.
"People don't seem to feel the need to upgrade [their iPads]," Jan Dawson, chief analyst at Jackdaw Research, wrote in an email to The Huffington Post. "So the number of people who have an iPad is still growing every quarter, but there aren't many people buying their second or third iPad."
Unlike smartphones, which nobody can really share, a family may buy just one tablet for the entire household. If they do buy another – perhaps – they will likely buy a cheaper one, said Kuittinen.