Does the iPad stand a chance outside the United States? The simple answer is NO

When Steve Jobs introduced the iPad in 2010, he created a new product that everyone else went to compete with. Companies like Samsung were shaken up because that was a product capable of changing the whole tablet market. The adoption rate and the sales for the iPad skyrocketed and grew as days went by. But that growth was short-lived. The year is 2012, other companies have began to manufacture phones with larger screens called Phablets. That was the beginning of the storm for the iPad.

iPad sales were a record high in 2011 in the United States. However, as people continued to buy the iPads in the US, the space and hunger for a tablet was fast filling up. And the year is 2014, Apple’s CEO Tim Cook says, in the US, the “market has grown weaker” and weaker. Three reasons. One, most people who want the iPad already have it. Second, most people are stuck on their old iPads as they are reluctant to get a new one because the iPad has largely remained the same hardware with a different OS every year. Three, if anything has changed, it’s that other tech giants have upped their games and commanded a great market share as well.

According to reports from IDC this year, Apple is still maintaining top spot in the tablet business. However, they are down from 40% market share last year to only 26.9 percent this year. That’s more like a free fall. Too fast. Apple’s tablet shipments this year are at 13.3 million units, indicating a 9.3 percent year over year decline.  ”The tablet market globally has really hit a wall,” said Cantor Fitzgerald analyst Brian White.

The pressure that’s slowly creeping in from Samsung, Lenovo and Asus show that the Cupertino contingency are losing grip in the US. They hardly have any grip in the worldwide market that’s filled with a number of cheaper tablets. The International Data Corporation (IDC) further say that despite the iPads continued decline, tablets are on high demand as the tablet market has continued to grow by 11% year over year.

Apple has recently signed a deal with IBM to bring more tablets and iPhones to more businesses all over the world. In the deal, Apple will provide the hardware while IBM provides the business-focused apps which shall in turn be brought closer to enterprises around the world. Does that alone provide some hope for the iPads? It is a market of anything, and as the supply and demand curves will have it, we cannot expect much from this deal.

Apple is also counting on the new and rising market in the Middle East and China. Markets that i would think have not the power to take Apple’s iPad back to real life. China is considered among the markets that provide commodities for cheap. Certainly, the iPad isn’t in that range. And certainly, not everyone in the Middle East is an oil mogul.

Soon, when Apple releases the 4.7 inch and 5.5 inch rumored iPhones, the slow death for the iPad might begin. I shall attribute that to an inside job. More like Apple killing it’s own product. The 5.5 inch Apple phablet will be creeping in on the iPad Mini in size. Bad news again. If people opt to buy more of the phablets as we have seen before, and the 4.7 inch smartphone, it’s bad news for Apple on the iPad tale.

The death of the iPad is inevitable, unless these two things happen. One, the US market all decide to throw away their iPads and buy new ones for some unknown reasons. Two, Apple decides to extremely lower the price to make the iPad extremely affordable worldwide. Three, good old IBM comes to the rescue. The third decision is what Tim Cook seems to be settling for, because the first is impossible and the second is unthinkable.

I love my iPad. I do. Can somebody please save this dynamite for all of us?

Yes the simple answer to this question is No, but the long-term answer is maybe. Disagree with me if you may, but unlike the iPhone, i don’t see the iPad surviving in this space long enough unless very great changes are made. Cook has now taken over the reins as Apple’s CEO. Why now? Because it’s only now that he is beginning to move away from Steve Jobs’ ideologies and principles. If the rumors circulating about the expected iPhone sizes are true, then it’s really clear that we are starting to see a new Apple. Tim Cook’s Apple. Would he be willing to bend Steve’s rules? If he makes a larger iPhone he already has. Meanwhile, it shall remain a storm over paradise as iPads continue to lose the grip internationally.