NEW YORK (TheStreet) -- On Monday, TheStreet's Chris Ciaccia told us that Apple's (AAPL) forthcoming iPad Mini will be the Cupertino company's (I love obvious, newspaper-like descriptors) next hit product.
Ciaccia points to reports of Apple loading the pipeline with up to 10 million units of the device as proof that "any doubts" about the tablet "can be put rest."
While I would stop short of correlating Apple's order with certain success, I never expected the iPad Mini to do anything but crush sales records in the overall tablet market, let alone the niche space of smallish models.
And, because it's from Apple, it will be a strong product. There's no such thing as a bad Apple product. Even when it's not good, it's not bad.Success, or lack thereof, with iPad Mini from a revenue, unit sales or even margin standpoint means very little. What matters more is how this positions Apple, from an innovation standpoint, for the future. Theoretically, an iPad Mini is a bad idea. On the surface, it's little more than a reaction to what Amazon.com (AMZN) has already done. Amazon entered the tablet market with a cheap knockoff, not to compete directly with Apple, but to further its plans for world domination via e-commerce. Make no mistake about it, Apple and Amazon can -- and pretty much do -- dominate together. If there's a such thing as frenemies, Apple and Amazon are it. Ultimately, they further one another's agendas. Increased use of Apple devices drives e-commerce. E-commerce sales help further cement the place of tablets and smartphones as societal staples. Certainly, Apple and Amazon compete by selling content. And, no doubt, Amazon just upped the ante with its new Kindle devices. That said, Amazon will never produce better hardware than Apple does, even if it tries. Jeff Bezos knows this. An Amazon tablet is like a mediocre slice of New York pizza. Or that guy or girl you turned down in college who looks pretty good after a few beers at the end of the night at age 40.
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