Apple revealed the iPad 2 yesterday, announcing that it would ship on March 11 in 26 countries, followed by more on March 25. Apple announced that the pricing of iPad 2 models would reflect those of the iPad 1 models. However, the iPad 1 models are dropping in price by a hundred bucks.
Given that the original iPad really hasn't been out that long yet, and Apple really wants people to get the new version, they're reportedly offering to refund the price difference to consumers who already purchased the first iPad.
UK-based ElectricPig, which spoke with the comnpany, reports, "We were assured by Apple's sales team that Apple would just refund the £100 price difference, without any complicated returns and exchanges, so you can take advantage of the price drop on the original iPad. Good news! The catch is that you'll need to be within the 14-day returns window, which doesn't leave much wiggle room for those outside of that window. You'll also need your receipt."
As usual, Steve Jobs did its fair share of competitor mocking at the big iPad event, implying that the iPad 2 will just completely blow everything else out of the water. We'll let time and consumer decisions dictate the accuracy of that, but the device hasn't failed to impress so far.
The refund thing ought to be huge for bumping up sales of the iPad 2, which will make the numbers look nice. The people who own iPads already are primarily the early adopters, so it stands to reason that a significant amount of them will be game for purchasing the new version of the device.
There's no denying that competition in the tablet space is much greater now, however, coming from companies putting out devices running Google's Android operating system, and Microsoft's Windows platform, as well as HP webOS devices, and BlackBerry devices from RIM.
Pricing is a big reason why Android has been able to gain so much momentum in the smartphone market, and as the OS makes its way to more devices, that's likely to come into play in the tablet market as well. The price reduction for the original iPad should help things for Apple too though.