About that ridiculous Kindle vs iPad survey

Since the Kindle doesn’t seem to have any dangerous competitors any more the Apple-loving Press decided to create one. Never mind that it isn’t an eReader.

The Press took a Kindle vs iPad survey that’s amusingly incoherent and more than a little shady and elevated it to fact.

iPad has 95% of the Tablet Market and 32% of the eReader market?

Yes, much like Schroedinger’s Cat the iPad manages to co-exist in two completely different markets.

A single article covering the survey manages to mention both without even realizing how stupid it sounds – It begins with ‘iPad is killing Kindle in the eReader market’ and ends with ‘iPad also has 95% of the tablet market’.

The interesting thing is that this argument has been used in the past – Then it was the iPhone’s turn to play Schroedinger’s Cat and double up as an eReader.

Guess what happened with the tens of millions of iPhones that were ‘eReaders’ and set to destroy the Kindle?

Nothing. The Kindle kept selling like hotcakes.

Surveys the main-stream Press doesn’t want you to know about

There are actually three surveys that no one in the main stream press is picking up.

  1. The first survey talks about how the number of eReaders has tripled in 1 year. That’s despite the iPad supposedly destroying eReaders. Media Post covers the survey from GfK MRI which talks about the number of dedicated eReaders tripling -

    The number of U.S. adults who own an e-reader — meaning devices like the Amazon Kindle and Sony Reader, not Apple’s iPad — has tripled over the last year, according to GfK MRI. Where 2.1 million adults owned an e-reader device in March-October 2009, that number has soared to 5.9 million in the same period of 2010.

  2. The second survey talks about 14% of book buyers owning a dedicated eReader and that number growing to 22% by mid-2011. It also claims 800,000 Kindles have been sold between June and mid-November of 2010 (the link goes my post detailing the survey and there’s a link to the actual survey in the post).
  3. The third survey is a survey of 1,800 consumers which shows that 12% expect to buy a Kindle or another dedicated eReader. Citi analyst Mark Mahaney had this to say -

    “further establishes dedicated e-Reader devices as a robust, growing category, with the outlook for Kindle device and eBook sales likely greater than the market anticipates,” Mahaney said.

    That makes Mahaney think his estimate of 8 million Kindles to be sold in 2011 could be too low.

Those are three surveys that are more credible than ChangeWave and yet they don’t get coverage. They are all pretty recent too – 24th through 29th November, 2010.

200 Vs 15 – Only iPad-positive news is allowed to spread

The Press’ bias is painfully obvious -

  1. You’d think an analyst estimate of 8 million plus Kindles sold in 2011 would get coverage – It didn’t. A paltry 9 articles mentioned it.
  2. Guess how many articles were written about the ‘tripling in number of eReaders’ survey? Just five.
  3. What about the ‘800,000 Kindles sold’ survey? One. Yes, that’s right – One single solitary article. Not a single main stream paper or blog thought it’s worth mentioning that 800,000 Kindles might have been sold since around the time of the Kindle 3 launch. 
  4. Basically, any survey that even remotely hinted the Kindle was a big hit and about to get bigger was buried.
  5. Contrast it with how the ‘iPad is killing Kindle’ non-survey was treated. There are 200+ articles about it – in one day.

When the Press hears what it wants to hear there are 200 articles in one day. When it doesn’t like some part of reality – It pretends it doesn’t exist.

iPad is NOT an eReader – it just wants a market it can pretend to be winning

There are a ton of people who have bought an iPad to watch Netflix or to show it off or to pledge their allegiance to Steve Jobs. Assuming the iPad is an eReader means assuming all those people are serious book readers.

We sold 15 million phones last week – Why aren’t they the #1 eReader? For that matter – Why aren’t desktop computers or laptops?

If the iPad wants to jump around markets why doesn’t it Schroedinger’s Cat its way into the TV market or the PC market?

Consider the markets iPad never even goes near – Smartphones, Computers, Laptops, TVs, Video Game Consoles.

iPad users watch movies and TV, surf the web, and play games a lot more than they read books – Why doesn’t the iPad call itself a portable TV or a game console or a mini-computer?

Because then it’d be nothing. It’s much easier and more impressive to claim you have 95% of the Tablet market than 3% of the TV market.

ChangeWave’s Survey is atrociously bad and rather suspicious

In their rush to glorify the JesusPad the Press didn’t even bother to read the full survey.

The Most Incoherent Survey Ever?

Here’s what ChangeWave claims future eReader buyers (next 90 days) will buy -

  1. 42% will buy iPad. 
  2. 33% will buy Kindle.
  3. 4% will buy Nook. Really?  
  4. 1% will buy Sony. What?
  5. 2% will buy a smart phone with eBook capability. Ha ha ha ha ha!

Are we really expected to believe that only 7% of people who want a device to read books on will get a Nook, Sony, or smart phone?

Notice how the anti-eReader press takes turns -

  • Either smartphones are going to account for 80% of sales and kill Kindle and Nook.
  • Or they will settle for 2% of the market and iPad is going to take 42% and kill Kindle and Nook.

Only 2% of people who want a reading device are going to get smartphones? Weren’t smart phones the last ‘magical and revolutionary’ class of devices that were supposed to kill Kindles and Nooks? Aren’t they selling tens of millions of units a month?

Don’t know what ChangeWave is getting in return for this survey that leaves its credibility in tatters – Hope it’s worth it.

Why does Change Wave keep producing ‘iPad is the best eReader’ surveys?

Change Wave comes across as a shill – In March it came up with a convenient survey that claimed iPad was going to kill eReaders. That was right before launch. Now it’s come up with a survey that claims iPad is killing ereaders. This is right before Christmas.

ChangeWave is probably lining up its next 3 surveys – the first to run before iPad 2 launches, the second to run before Christmas Season 2011, and the third to run right after the Kindle Color or Kindle Tablet launches.

Epilogue – Nook Color is going to be the second device to thrash iPad, the pretend eReader

If B&N can stay solvent through all of 2011 then we’re going to see two big surprises -

  1. Despite all the claims of ‘iPad as eReader’ and ‘animated page turn magic on iBooks’ Apple is going to be beaten thoroughly by Kindle and even by Kindle for iPad – and in that exact order. Note: We’re talking about whichever your prefer out of – readers buying a device for reading, number of books read.
  2. The humble Nook Color is going to whip the iPad as the casual reader’s reading Tablet. The measure of it will be ebook sales and total Nook sales to readers. The claim is that 42% of readers will buy iPad and only 4% will buy Nooks – Let’s see how that holds up.

The Nook Color has already been rooted to be an Android Tablet (the process isn’t perfect or easy yet – Nook Devs have the scoop) and you can bet that it’s going to steal a lot of sales. Perhaps, instead of pretending to be an eReader, the iPad should watch out for Android Tablets which are going to destroy its 95% market share in Tablets.

Courtesy Sergii – #1 of 1 is always 1.

Once we have more actual, viable Tablets available we’ll see how long the iPad’s 95% market share and pretend-magnificence lasts.

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