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Market Analysis for Apples iPad Mini
Computers of the appropriate size were very attractive for business and domestic users in terms of their functionality. However, their performance was substantially lower than that of the big brothers supercomputers. Therefore, quality shifts in technologies of computers creation and their functional application for the real-life purposes (not only scientific calculations) were inevitable. Apple with its iPad became one of the pioneers of the industry it made tablets (4 versions already) that conquered markets all over the world easily (Campbell-Kelly & Aspray, 2004).
The main contributors to success were: the appropriate size of the models, the performance, and, of course, the brand name. Apple managed to create devices that provided users with new experience and made in appropriate manner created tablets with the usability of desktops (almost) and mobility of the iPhones (almost). People wanted to have something from Apple to fill this niche of the market. More to say, after the introduction of iPhone, iPad was a logical step of the company. Users wanted to have the big screen and slick design of iPhone and Apple gave it to them. Later, marketers realized that iPad should have pocketsize version too. Thus, iPad Mini was created.
One can see today the convergence of various devices into one. Cameras, music players, phones, GPS trackers, and many other separate devices become one single smart machine in our pocket. Such a device is small, it is not the size of a room, it can be carried freely everywhere people want and it is always with one in a pocket. The availability of the wireless network connection has made computer science even more affected by mobile technologies because all users have desired to have a more sophisticated and more intelligent device.
Mobile phones, as people know them today, are a pure computer science; they resemble the ideal device of the future. It should have functionality of a laptop, performance of a super computer, and beauty of a mobile phone. The influence of mobile technologies on further miniaturization of computers and the appropriate development of computer science is obvious. One can see how this influence is getting stronger every year. Who knows how computers will look like in ten-twenty years from now. They will be definitely looking more like mobile phones than computers of the past.
It is clear that Apple should increase the power of iPad in order to make it more attractive as the replacement of the existing devices people use at work. In addition, the company should decrease the price for the previous models and sell it in packages with software and the most useful add-ons. This should prolong the maturity period. Another step to undertake is the creation of the new additional gadgets such as keyboards, dock stations, etc. that would be more compact but more useful than the existing analogs. iPad Mini should have such features to be successful.
The aforementioned device is the smaller version of iPad with seven inches screen. Mini entered the market, filled with other solutions of such size; therefore, the competition is rather substantial. Among the major competitors are Kindle Fire 2012, Barnes & Noble Nook HD+, Kindle Fire HD, and Google Nexus 7 (Franklin, 2012). The positions of these tablets are very strong on the market because of the variety of functional options they are able to provide for the customers. iPad Mini is only one of the players on the market because its only substantial benefit is the brand name. The market share of Kindle Fire is 12.7%; Google Nexus 7 – 18.5%; and the Barnes & Noble Nook – 21.7%. Figure 1 demonstrates the comparison of the competitors (Smith, 2012):
Figure 1. Comparison Table
As it can be noticed, the market is shared by the major players almost equally (Morphy, 2012). According to Epstein (2013), iPad Mini usage grew about 50% faster during early November. It is clear that iPad Mini is also very popular as well as its big brother iPad.
iPad (all versions) was designed and developed in order to satisfy the needs and desires of premium segment of this market. The brand name, the look, and functionality made iPad so popular. Ten-inch (or so) tablets are the kings of the tablet market and only Samsung, probably, can compete with iPad in this area (Martellaro, 2012). The market of seven-inch tablets is substantially more competitive. The targeted market for iPad Mini is the premium segment of 7-inch tablets niche. People would purchase smaller iPad just because it was iPad product of Apple Inc. However, iPad Mini is not a cheap device. Therefore, competitors can provide one very competitive feature the price. It is important to understand the customers profile of Apple iPad Mini (Martellaro, 2012).
The most usual customer of Apple is the one who purchased any Apple devices before iPhones, iPads, etc. Considering the position of Apple on the domestic American market, most Americans would purchase something from Apple it is a prestigious brand, with many features, slick design, and rather impressive price tag (Martellaro, 2012). Therefore, domestic customers are the main customers of iPad Mini. Numerous models from other brands outside the American market are able to provide similar or better functionality, same form-factor, and lower prices. To sum up, the major features of an iPad Mini customer are as follows: an American, existing customer of Apple, age from 20 to 45, and can afford it. Therefore, the best market for iPad Mini is the domestic market (Martellaro, 2012).