Monday, April 05, 2010

Hundreds of Millions worth of free publicity: iPad hysteria!

Hysteria is the only suitable word to describe the iPad launch, on Saturday 3 April, preceded by heightened speculation since it’s ‘unveiling’ by Steve Jobs on January 27, which in turn came after years of speculation and teasing by Apple.

It’s a masterpiece of a product and a masterstroke of marketing, which encourages analysts and industry experts to believe that maybe someone will finally crack the tablet market, following several attempts from Microsoft, HP and others.
As was the case with iPod, Apple was not necessarily the first to introduce such a device, but it was the best to understand the ‘comprehensive, high utility, software-hardware integration’ approach needed. With iPod, Apple re-introduced the digital music player category, and controls more than three quarters of that market since.

The iPhone then followed, broke the stronghold of Nokia, Motorola and other established players and did what they could not do: introduce a whole new pocket computing platform, that also happens to be a phone; thanks to popularity of iTunes and the App Store.

So, the next natural step was to build a ‘bigger computer’ that utilized this now massively popular platform, and that’s what the iPad is. Or is it actually more?

News organizations and websites are all clamoring to evaluate the iPad’s features, with ‘exclusive reviews’, and the results are ranging from ‘pleased’ to ‘raving ecstasy’.

Engadget, the world’s top blog for gadgets and a definitive resource, has already declared that it’s a legendary device saying the iPad is “more than a product, it's a statement, an idea, and potentially a prime mover in the world of consumer electronics, but what was little more than rumor and speculation for nearly ten years is now very much a reality.”

Newsweek’s cover provides its verdict too saying: “What’s so great about the iPad...... everything!” We shall find out if that is indeed true.

As of yet, no launch date for the Middle East has been set, but hysteria is building up here too. A study by YouGov showed that 58% of respondents in the Middle East were likely to buy the iPad, which was more than the percentages reported in the UK and the USA.

Either YouGov have a strange sampling methodology, or we’re just Apple iPad crazy in the Middle East.

Soon, we’ll all be able to decide for ourselves!


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