With the UK iPad launch just around the corner on May 28th, itâ€™s about the right time for some analyst or another to pop up and pour cold water on all the excitement. Step forward Mike Stevens, Director of British market research company Simpson Carpenterâ€™s TMT team, who according to a report on TechRadar today says that the iPad is unlikely to be a mass market product, at least initially.
Stevens bases this belief on his research, which looked at four qualitative groups of typical British consumers. â€œItâ€™s not surprising that many consumers struggle to see how it could fit into their lives,â€ Stevens told TechRadar, continuing, â€œNich groups with specific emotional or functional needs love it; but right now there isnâ€™t a compelling incentive to get mainstream consumers to buy it. Of course this may change once they see how early adopters use it - but in our view the iPad will take longer to achieve the sales growth and wider market impact of the iPhone.â€
Surely this is an overly pessimistic view? Apple will doubtless have some great advertising and promotional tricks up its sleeve for the UK launch and the months beyond, and once the general public starts seeing what it can do, and maybe sees it in some of the average British high street retailers, such as Tesco, Comet, Asda (Walmart), or Argos, it will be flying off the shelves.
By Maura Sutton, iPadForums.net