Apple iPad Hoopla Fails to Convince Buyers
A follow-up Retrevo Pulse study looking at consumer interest in buying the new Apple iPad indicates a failure to convince any new buyers to consider the iPad. Not only did Apple fail to convince new buyers, it may have lost many potential buyers who now say they don’t think they need an Apple tablet computer.
Consumers Lose Interest after Announcement
Retrevo’s study asked consumers whether or not they had heard about the tablet before the tablet was introduced and again after the announcement. The word definitely got out as the number of respondents saying they had heard about the tablet rose from 48% shortly before the announcement to over 80% after the media frenzy on January 27th.
Unfortunately for Apple, the number if respondents saying they had heard about the tablet but were not interested in buying one, doubled from 25% before the announcement to over 50% following the announcement.

The World Was Abuzz Over the Tablet

There is no question whether or not the word got out on the Apple iPad. Retrevo even created a new tool called the Retrevo Buzzmeter to measure Twitter activity around the announcement and also for the State of the Union Address that evening. Not surprisingly the 7,000 Tweets Per Minute (TPM) peak rivaled the 9,000 TPM peak value for President Obama.

Most Consumers Don’t Think They Need an iPad
Responses to a more direct question that was asked before and after the announcement further reinforced the bad news for Apple. When asked before the announcement if they thought they needed the tablet, 49% of respondents answered “no” with 30% saying they needed to know more about it before they could decide.
After the announcement the percentage of respondents indicating they needed more info had dropped by half but the overwhelming majority of those who felt they now had sufficient knowledge, decided they didn’t need a tablet. This raised the total number of respondents saying “no” to the iPad, after the announcement, to 61%.
Buyers Don’t Want to Pay for 3G
Apple will be adding an extra $130 to the price for adding the optional 3G connectivity. This doesn’t appear to be a very popular option as more than half the respondents to the study, after the announcement, said they wouldn’t pay extra for 3G.
Software Sells Hardware
As we like to say, it’s the apps that sell smartphones like the iPhone and it could very well be those same apps that motivate buyers to run down to the Apple Store and get in line to buy a shiny new iPad. Whether this device becomes a big hit is anyone’s guess but based on this study it sure looks doubtful.

  Editors Note:
  Due to the interest this study, Retrevo's editorial department would like emphasize and clarify a few points. First, we should have emphasized the positive side of the results more, where the number of respondents indicating interested in an iPad tripled from 3% to 9%. Also, at the end of the day, having 30% of respondents as potential iPad buyers is not a bad thing for Apple. Second, we should say that it was not so much Apple that created the "hoopla" surrounding the tablet, as much as it was the media; so much so that consumers may have been underwhelmed when the product was finally announced. Furthermore, Apple should be given more of the benefit of the doubt for being able to drive sales of their iPad when it actually goes on sale. Given the media hype around the launch, our study offers conclusions that some may disagree with but we feel our data suggests the iPad may have to prove itself before becoming as popular a product as the iPhone.

About Retrevo Pulse Report

Data for this report came from a study of more than 1000 randomly selected Retrevo users. A first random sample of users were surveyed between Jan 16-20, 2010 before the Apple Tablet was announced. A second random sample of users were surveyed between Jan 27 – Feb 3, 2010, after the announcement. The sample was distributed across gender, age, income and location in the United States. Most questions had a confidence interval of 4% at a 95% confidence level.

Retrevo is the ultimate electronics marketplace that helps people make decisions about what, when, and where to buy electronics like LCD and Plasma HDTVs, Digital Cameras, GPS, Laptops, Monitors, Wireless Routers, and even Air Conditioners, Vacuum Cleaners, and Refrigerators.

For more information contact:
Jennifer Jacobson
Director of Public Relations
press "at" retrevo.com

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