Apple CEO blames rumor-mill for underwhelming iPad sales

Apple iPad sales were up in Q4 of 2012 – just not as much as many analysts had predicted. 

Marcio Jose Sanchez/AP
Apple CEO Tim Cook talks at an Apple event in San Jose, Calif., on Oct. 23, 2012.

On Friday, Apple released its fourth quarter earnings report.

The good news: Revenue is up 24 percent, and iPhone sales are soaring – Apple unloaded 26.9 million iPhones in Q4, a 58 percent jump from the same time last year. The not-so-good news: Apple sold 14 million iPads during the last quarter, which is obviously a pretty hefty number, and up 14 percent from Q4 of 2011, but somewhat short of the 17 percent predicted by many analysts. 

Summary: Apple is selling a lot of iPads, just not as many iPads as Wall Street would have liked.

So what's to blame for the discrepancy? Well, in an earnings call yesterday, Apple CEO Tim Cook pointed a finger at gossip-mongers.

"Customers delay purchases of tablets due to new product rumors," he said. "These intensified in August and September. Some was anticipated but some we wished wouldn't occur but it did."

The "new product," in this case, of course, is the iPad Mini, which was unveiled earlier this week. Cook clearly believes that many Apple fans put off purchasing a third-generation iPad, and decided to wait for the iPad Mini instead. 

Alternative theory: the third-generation iPad, even with its "extraordinarily sharp" Retina Display, just wasn't enough of a re-envisioning of the iPad to attract a large swath of new users. 

Not that it's all doom and gloom.

In an interview with The Wall Street Journal, Brian Marshall, a technology analyst at ISI Group, suggested that investors take a wide-angle view.

"The investment community tends to get ‘wrapped around the axle’ on tertiary details and fails to forget the 'big picture,' " Marshall said. "Demand for Apple products is much greater than current supply." 

For more tech news, follow us on Twitter @venturenaut.

You've read  of  free articles. Subscribe to continue.
Real news can be honest, hopeful, credible, constructive.
What is the Monitor difference? Tackling the tough headlines – with humanity. Listening to sources – with respect. Seeing the story that others are missing by reporting what so often gets overlooked: the values that connect us. That’s Monitor reporting – news that changes how you see the world.

Dear Reader,

About a year ago, I happened upon this statement about the Monitor in the Harvard Business Review – under the charming heading of “do things that don’t interest you”:

“Many things that end up” being meaningful, writes social scientist Joseph Grenny, “have come from conference workshops, articles, or online videos that began as a chore and ended with an insight. My work in Kenya, for example, was heavily influenced by a Christian Science Monitor article I had forced myself to read 10 years earlier. Sometimes, we call things ‘boring’ simply because they lie outside the box we are currently in.”

If you were to come up with a punchline to a joke about the Monitor, that would probably be it. We’re seen as being global, fair, insightful, and perhaps a bit too earnest. We’re the bran muffin of journalism.

But you know what? We change lives. And I’m going to argue that we change lives precisely because we force open that too-small box that most human beings think they live in.

The Monitor is a peculiar little publication that’s hard for the world to figure out. We’re run by a church, but we’re not only for church members and we’re not about converting people. We’re known as being fair even as the world becomes as polarized as at any time since the newspaper’s founding in 1908.

We have a mission beyond circulation, we want to bridge divides. We’re about kicking down the door of thought everywhere and saying, “You are bigger and more capable than you realize. And we can prove it.”

If you’re looking for bran muffin journalism, you can subscribe to the Monitor for $15. You’ll get the Monitor Weekly magazine, the Monitor Daily email, and unlimited access to

QR Code to Apple CEO blames rumor-mill for underwhelming iPad sales
Read this article in
QR Code to Subscription page
Start your subscription today