Hate the iPad because it doesn't do Flash. Curse Apple's magical device for the lack of ubiquitous connectivity, like USB and HDMI. Hurl insults at the iPad because it's a giant iPod (that's oversimplifying, but let's keep hating), costs more than a netbook but lacks a physical keyboard, doesn't have a microSD card slot, or simply because it's Apple. Fair enough, but one thing you can't do is deny its impact on laptop PC sales, not if Best Buy's numbers are correct.
Talking with The Wall Street Journal, Best Buy Chief Executive, Brian Dunn, claims that internal estimates peg the iPad as cannibalizing laptop sales by as much as 50 percent. That's a remarkable, if not shocking figure. We're not so much surprised that the iPad is chewing into notebook sales, but that it could be replacing half of all laptops is staggering.
As Wired points out, Mac sales continue to grow every quarter, so most of that figure probably represents Windows market share. But should Microsoft be worried? That remains to be seen. The tablet market is still essentially a one-man show, and once Windows-based slates start shipping, we have to imagine that some of those folks picking up a tablet instead of a laptop will gravitate towards Windows devices.
In any event, does Best Buy's internal figure surprise you?