Apple iPad 10’s first sales are cold and domestic tablets are rushing forward

China Business Daily (Reporter Jiao Likun) On October 26, the Apple iPad 10 tablet computer was officially launched, and the price on the first sale day suffered a “break”. It is worth noting that at present, domestic manufacturers are accelerating their siege in the tablet PC market, especially in the entry-level market, where price wars are imminent.

An Apple store in Beijing. (China Business Daily reporter Ma Wenbo/Photo)

iPad 10 first sales are quiet

Just like the “quiet” when it was released on October 18, the first sale of the iPad 10 was also quiet. There were no queues in front of Apple’s Sanlitun direct-operated store in Beijing, and major distributors did not conduct promotions loudly. Even on some third-party platforms, the price fell directly below the “issue price”.

Taking the entry-level model priced at 3,599 yuan (RMB, the same below) as an example, on October 26, a reporter from China Business Daily saw that the iPad 10 was priced at 3,349 yuan on an e-commerce platform, which was lower than Apple’s official website. 250 yuan, and it is on sale. On October 28, the subsidy price of the e-commerce platform was as low as 3,298 yuan, which was 301 yuan lower than the price on Apple’s official website.

Screenshot of iPad 10 price on an e-commerce platform.

This market performance is not surprising to industry insiders. “From the current situation, it is not very popular.” A person in charge of a large chain store told a reporter from China Business Daily.

“Although it’s a ‘break’ on the first day, this is based on the fact that compared with the previous generation, the upgrade was not strong but the price increased by 1,100 yuan. In essence, the price has increased.” Senior Beijing Boruiheng Consulting Co., Ltd. Analyst Zhang Yang said.

On October 18, Apple released two new tablets, the iPad 10 and the iPad Pro 2022, the biggest “bright spot” of which is the price increase. Among them, the starting price of the former has risen to 3,599 yuan, which is 1,100 yuan higher than that of the previous generation; the starting prices of the latter 11-inch and 12.9-inch products are 6,799 yuan and 9,299 yuan respectively, which are 600 yuan and 800 yuan higher than the previous generation. . In addition, Apple has raised the price of older tablets.

Will friends and businessmen follow suit?

Apple’s price hike against the trend has aroused the attention of the outside world. IDC (International Data Corporation) China analyst Gan Miao told reporters that Apple continues to provide users with M2 flagship chip products with performance comparable to MacBook at the level of 11-inch and 12.9-inch tablet computers. The product positioning is more firm and clear.

In Gan Miao’s view, Apple’s price increase this time is mainly because the appreciation of the US dollar drives the price of components settled in US dollars, and the weak consumption has little impact on Apple users. “Apple’s users are very loyal, and there are more high-net-worth customers, so raising prices will help increase net profit.”

Eric Smith, director of Strategy Analytics’ Connected Computing Device Services, said that all suppliers are trying to maintain a balance, on the one hand, to maintain profit margins in a high inflation environment, on the other hand, to achieve the best price possible under the circumstances. Apple’s brand and market share are very strong, “even if Apple loses some market share, it is worth fighting against rising costs in production, logistics, etc.”

So, will Apple’s iPad price increase be transmitted to the entire industry, and will friends and businessmen follow up?

Eric Smith said some large manufacturers have also raised prices on new products this year. Amazon, for example, launched its Fire 7 and Fire HD 8 tablets in September for $10 more than the previous generation, and the Samsung Galaxy Tab S8 costs $50 more than the S7. “New features on newer models don’t always mean higher prices, but they do in 2022 due to inflation, with price increases expected to continue for at least six months,” Eric Smith said.

According to IDC’s quarterly tablet tracking report, in the second quarter of this year, the average price of tablet computers in China was about 2,824 yuan, down 9.4% from the previous quarter. However, the agency’s latest monitoring data shows that China’s tablet industry as a whole has been affected by the rise in the US dollar (the devaluation of the RMB), especially in the third quarter, where the average unit price has risen.

Domestic manufacturers rush forward

However, in this case, more domestic manufacturers have shown an aggressive attitude.

On October 26, Huawei’s first brand attitude video “For those in the deep waters of the workplace – nothing to be afraid of” was released, signaling that Huawei MatePad will continue to advance to the high-end tablet market. In fact, since the second half of this year, Huawei has been accelerating the layout of the tablet market. In July, Huawei MatePad Pro 11-inch came out; in September, Huawei MatePad Pro 12.6-inch flagship tablet was launched.

Whether in the high-end market or in the entry-level market, more friends and businessmen are “eyeing on”. For example, Redmi is trying to act as a “price killer” in the entry-level tablet market.

On October 27, Redmi released its first tablet product, the Redmi Pad, with the 4GB+128GB version priced as low as 1099 yuan. Lu Weibing, partner of Xiaomi Group, president of China and International Department, and general manager of Redmi brand, said that Redmi Pad is positioned as “your first entry-level tablet”.

Earlier, realme, vivo, OPPO and other manufacturers have already entered this track.

With the opening of the “Double 11” pre-sale, major manufacturers have successively launched promotions to varying degrees, all trying to achieve breakthroughs in sales. There is no doubt that the battle for the tablet PC market will become more intense.

In Zhang Yang’s view, Apple’s price increase will definitely bring opportunities to domestic manufacturers. However, even if the low-end iPad products are cold, it is mainly because of their small performance improvement, low cost performance, and insufficient power for the replacement of old products. Consumers will still choose Apple as their first choice when their budget allows. This is the effect of long-term stable and good product performance, brand reputation, and a strong software ecosystem, which cannot be offset by a single product price increase. . “At present, domestic manufacturers should still focus on improving the quality of their products and wait for opportunities to hit the mid-to-high-end market.”