For the guy who has everything…

 

There is one product out there that is generating a lot of buzz and millions of sales that is mainly useful for the person who has everything. That product is the Apple iPad. The iPad has sold over 2 million units and the pace does not seem to be slowing down. The product itself is not much more than an oversized iPhone without the phone and a faster internet. Oh yeah, and it’s also about $700 more than an iPhone. It is less convenient than an iPhone and can not make phone calls. So why are people buying it? Well, for the most part the people that are buying iPads are those who have a lot of discretionary income and like to have the newest gadgets.

Anyone that tries it out and already owns an iPhone will quickly see that it is not worth the money. In fact, soon a newer version of the iPhone, the iPhone 4, will be introduced and will have some technological features that even the iPad will not have for about a 1/4 of the price. Moreover, most apps right now are made for the small screen of the iPhone and don’t look that great on the larger iPad screen.

However, this brings a very interesting situation for advertisers and marketers. For companies whose target market is the ultra lucrative upper class customer, all you have to do is find out if the person owns an iPad. If they do, then chances are that they are rather wealthy or at least well to do. By advertising on apps tailor made for the iPad (even though there aren’t too many of them out there yet) it will go directly to that customer base.

To prove that argument, recently AT&T was hacked and the hackers retrieved personal data, including email addresses from over 100,000 iPad owners. This list included a higher than proportional rate of celebrities, politicians and CEOs. Obviously this was a terrible act and the hackers should be severely punished, but it just shows that the iPad is mainly used by people with money. Advertisers should take notice of that.

In reality, the iPad doesn’t do anything much better than other devices. Its best tool is its fast internet capability, but even that is not faster than a good laptop- maybe equal, but nothing to write home about. For watching movies, it is very uncomfortable because you’re either going to be holding it up with your hands for 1.5-2 hours or be looking straight down on your lap to see the screen. Viewing a movie on a laptop is much more comfortable and convenient. It is also not nearly as mobile as your phone because no matter how baggy a person’s pants may be, the pockets will still not fit the iPad. Since, it requires a carrying case of some sort, you might as well carry your laptop instead, since it is a lot more useful.

The iPad is starting to be more important to the marketers and advertisers that are looking to reach a wealthy customer base than for the consumer himself. Since Apple’s other products have a more mass audience appeal, I think the sales of iPad will fade quicker than the iPhone and iPod will.