Things are looking up for Apple after a tough week, following predictions from research firm iSuppli that the company will shift 12.9 million iPads this year. But, while the tablet continues to sell quietly in the background, the PR disaster that is iPhone 4 hogs the limelight.
IPad sales are predicted to rise to 36.5 million 2011, peaking at 50.4 million in 2012, according to iSuppli.
If the figures are to be believed, this would make the iPad one of the best selling electronics products in history, on a par with the hugely successful Nintendo Wii, which launched in 2006 and has sold over 70 million units worldwide.
Apple is ramping up the production of two key components for the device, LCD panels and Nand Flash, a clear indicator that it wants to meet growing demand.
The company could increase its 2010 production goals, but this would risk sacrificing quality. ISuppli believes that Apple will stay close to its existing production targets, leaving room for expansion in 2011.
This looks to be a wise move. Shipping sub-standard iPads in an effort to meet demand could have a devastating impact on the brand, as the so-called 'antennagate' scandal has testified.
An upgraded version of the iPad is expected next year, and could include an internal camera and additional screen sizes, the market research firm predicted.
So can Apple really shift 12.9 million iPads before the year's end? The firm sold an incredible three million in 80 days after launching, so it's not impossible.
The forecast from iSuppli sounds realistic because Apple is already shipping the products in numbers, Francisco Jeronimo, research manager, European mobile devices at IDC, told V3.co.uk.
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