But consumers may wonder, with products like the Kindle Fire available at such a low cost, are iPad sales being hurt? The Kindle Fire can be purchased for around $200 and the iPad can range from $500 - $900. That's a pretty steep jump for most consumers. I would think it would hurt Apple sales but, they are not really the same products. Do consumers even consider the Kindle Fire a viable option if they aspire to an iPad? If not, we shouldn't see any impact on iPad sales.
Apple CEO Tim Cook reports:
"I looked at the data – particularly in the US – on a weekly basis after Amazon launched the Kindle Fire, and in my view there wasn't an obvious effect on the [iPad sales] numbers".
When asked about Kindle customers taking the next step to iPad because of the inherent limitation's of Fire and disregarding the price jump Cook commented:
"Whether that's happening on a very, very large basis, I don't know, again, my own view is – looking at our data in the US – there was no obvious change".
Cook elaborates further regarding e-readers and other tablet computers:
"There's clearly customers that will buy those and I think they'll sell a fair number of units, but I don't think that people who want an iPad will settle for a limited-function [replacement]".
So from Apple's perspective at least, there is no substitute yet on par with the iPad. But I think there is more competition on the way. This marks the third year since the iPad was released. Let's see what comes out this year though I know there's a great deal of brand loyalty for Apple products so it'll take some pretty outstanding innovation to entice perspective buyers away from the iPad.