The iPad mini is certainly a hot product right now, but is it cannibalizing sales of Apple’s other products? A bit, but it’s also creating more demand for Apple products. A recent survey of 1,225 U.S. adults conducted by Cowen and Co. found that 83.4 percent of iPad mini buyers said it wouldn’t replace another device, such as the original iPad. 16.6% of those surveyed said the iPad mini would replace another device, however; out of that group, 29 percent said that the iPad mini would replace an iPad, 42 percent said it would replace their Windows PC and 13 percent said it would replace a Kindle Fire.
It’s good news for Apple that first-time tablet buyers are gravitating toward the iPad mini, instead of competitor’s devices, and it appears that just a small percentage are replacing an older iPad with an iPad mini. Here’s another angle to look at it: the iPad mini is bringing out customers who, for one reason or another, weren’t buying Apple’s other iPads. So while it will certainly cannibalize some larger iPad sales, Apple is still gaining customers.
“The iPad mini creates more demand than it cannibalizes,” said Matthew Hoffman, an analyst with Cowen and Co. “Since 52 percent of the mini intenders in our sample did not own a tablet of any type, we see it successfully positioned as likely to penetrate new entry-tier segments.” As I explained above, Hoffman said that the iPad mini will take sales away from the larger second and fourth generation iPads, but it’s also an “important tool to capture new consumers’ attention.”