Apple iPad 2 v HP

From the "What are they thinking of?!?" department comes a statement from Canalys analyst Tim Coulling that Apple will surpass HP as the top PC seller in either this quarter or the next … if you count iPads as a PC, that is.

Apple has been having a pretty stellar year with sales of its various Mac computers gaining ground every quarter.  However, even with record sales of its computer line, most analysts peg the Mac line at only five to nine percent of the PC market, putting it behind the likes of HP, Dell and Lenovo.  Well, that just isn't good enough for some people, and if you're in this group, and also a fan of creative accounting, than you'll love Mr. Coulling's take as he figures you can lump the iPad line in with PCs and that will push Apple up to 15 percent of the market.  This would be enough to put them into first place  after this quarter, or possibly just after the release of the iPad 3.

There is absolutely no doubt that Apple's share of the PC market is growing – and it is even outpacing the actual growth of the overall market – but lumping the iPad in with PC sales just makes no sense to us.  Just about everyone I have ever spoken to inside or outside of the industry agrees that the tablets are a completely separate beast from the PC.  As a matter of fact, many people like to throw around the idea the iPad is leading "the post-PC era" where we leave behind the computer as we've known it for decades; just because you can slap a keyboard dock on it doesn't make it a PC.  We have seen many interesting use cases for the iPad from replacing flight manuals on planes to taking over as menus at restaurants, this is clearly a different breed of device from the old CPU, keyboard, mouse and monitor combo.

Somehow my gut tells me that even Apple would turn down the honor of being the number one PC manufacturer if it meant lumping the iPad into the numbers to get there.

What do you think?  Does the iPad count as a PC?

[via Business Journal]