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Articles: The iPad is dead, long live the Mac!

There is a lot being written about the decline of iPad sales in 2014, with the usual plethora of analysts weighing in with speculations as to why. The probable reasons are varied, but as with all speculation related to global sales numbers, it really doesn’t matter to the individual consumer who makes decisions on what to buy for his or her own specific and personal reasons.

When it comes to portable computing, those with money to spend on technology have a choice between a smart phone, tablet, computer, or some combination of two or three. Obviously if you get outside of Apple, there are products that cross over two of those categories, with the bigger phones and tablets that double as computers, but for now, let’s just stay within the Apple ecosystem. 

There are a number of people who of course own or would like to own all three: an iPhone, an iPad and a Mac. As often happens with new technology, the latest purchase might get most of the attention. But as time goes by, one device or another gets used more often as the user adapts his or her style to the way those devices work.

For those with more than one device, the amount of use is often in some fluctuation. For instance, I recently traveled out of the country on vacation, and elected to bring a MacBook Air instead of my iPad. I’d been mostly traveling with my iPad because it’s just so darn easy, but with lots of emails to read and send (I’m not particularly fond of the iPad screen keyboard) and the occasional need for a program that wasn’t on my iPad, I was delighted with that decision. I’ve come full circle as it were.

I still use my iPad, but for now, the MacBook Air has kicked the iPad back out of my airline seat. It’s almost as easy to carry anyway. The question is how many people out there have achieved their maximum use of their iPad and are dialing it back a bit in favor of the more flexible and powerful Mac. Between a MacBook Air or Pro and an iPhone, the iPad might be turning into the odd man out for some people.

All of that simply makes the projected sales of any one of those devices more muddled than ever, because it’s more complicated than just trying to figure out how many people are going to adopt an iPad. Apple may not know how many people are just going to stay content with the version of iPad they already own, because they’re using it less often than they used to.

In any case, it feels as if the Mac is experiencing a bit of a resurgence as people realize their iPad might indeed be awesome, but that it’s not the end-all. With the Yosemite OS, Apple is bringing all three of these devices into synchronicity better than ever, making it easier to juggle multiple devices. In the end, the whole issue surely bodes well for Apple despite the small decline in iPad sales, since the “problem” is how people are figuring out to juggle multiple Apple devices. More devices, even used as only a percentage of overall computing use, means more sales for Apple.

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