Saturday, April 3, 2010

iPad: Credo ergo sum

The wondrous Apple hype cycle has been working overtime in winning coverage for today’s iPad rollout. In the 144 hours leading up to the actual availability, the iPad won the covers of Newsweek and Time, nightly stories on the evening news, even a full hour on Charlie Rose.

The iPad is not just a new revenue source for Apple, but the salvation of the publishing and other content industries desperately searching for a business model — at least according to CBS, the San Jose Mercury and Paid Content. If to prove this point, Time, ABC, CBS and New York Times have created apps to monetize the iPad/iPhone success — despite dire predictions of failure due to the lack of Flash.

True believers lined up today to be first on their block to own an iPad. One Apple founder lined up to join them, while the skinnier one came to watch them. The pre-launch consensus forecasts seem to be about 300,000 units this weekend, but one estimate now places the sales at 700,000 on the first day. Another analyst raised the 2010 forecast from 3 million to 7 million.

[2004 cover]Such publicity must be the norm for his Steve-ness, who among other successes made it on Newsweek with the iPod and at least seven times on the cover of Time.

Three years ago, as we were writing our iPhone article, Michael Mace and talked about writing an article about Apple’s consistent success at creating buzz and getting free publicity. Given the failure of Apple’s many imitators, it’s not clear how transferrable these competencies are, but I imagine there would be a market for what we have to say.

Update Monday noon: Actual day one sales were 300,000, not 700,000. The analyst who made the mistake lowers his 2010 predicted sales to 4.3 million.

1 comment:

Kenneth M. Kambara said...

You should team up with our cohort-member Hope Schau to study the fanbois.

I'm putting together a blogposium on on the future on content as we move towards web 3.0. Clearly, folks are still polishing brass on the Titanic.