It's that time again: Apple has just posted its Q2 2014 financials, and there are some interesting device sales numbers to peep at. Apple saw a big year-over-year jump in the number of iPhones sold (43.7 million this time vs. 37.4 million in the same quarter last year), thanks at least in part to a deal that brought the 5s and 5c to China Mobile -- a carrier that has over 750 million subscribers. Alas, Apple never breaks down its sales figures between models, so how many people opted for the colorful (and cheaper) 5c instead of the 5s is still a mystery. It didn't warrant a mention in the earnings release, but the company's moved 20 million Apple TVs (the hobby days are well behind it) and Mac sales surged slightly, too. The iPod did about as well as we thought... which is to say not well at all. The company sold fewer than half this quarter than it did during the same time last year, but it's no secret the venerable music players were slowly falling by the wayside.
But then there's the iPad.
Apple sold 16.4 million of them in Q2, which sounds pretty great... until you realize that the company sold closer to 20 million of them in Q2 2013. So far, there have been a few reasons as to why Apple didn't knock it out of the park with its tablets this time. There's the very simple fact that Apple hasn't unveiled a shiny new tablet since the Air and the Retina mini last year -- the allure of a new product (even an Apple product) can erode very quickly, and it's not like Apple doesn't have some top-tier competition to contend with. Some have also argued that the iPad's main market consists of high-income consumers, and they've already got their iPads. After all, we nerds may upgrade at the slightest provocation, but the iPad isn't bound by a mobile contract that promises you a good deal on a new one in two years. It's more fixed than that, so it shouldn't be surprising that people tend to hold on to them. Even Jean-Louis Gassée -- one of Apple's most prominent execs during the late '80s and early '90s -- can't help but opine. To him, the iPad is "a tease," a device that people hoped would be able to replace a full-blown PC, but hasn't lived up to expectations.
Update: Apple couldn't not address the iPad issue, and CEO Tim Cook came out swinging by chalking it up to differences in channel inventory. He later reiterated that the iPad has been the fasting growing product in the company's history.
"We've sold over 210 million [iPads], which is more than we or anyone thought was possible," he said. "It's interesting to note that that's over twice as many iPhones as we had sold in a comparable period of time and over seven times as many iPods as we had sold in the period of time." To no one's surprise, Cook is still awfully bullish on the iPad's future and believes that things look "very, very good" over the long haul, even if Apple occasionally can't put up sales numbers "every 90 days that everyone's thrilled with."