Apple Inc (AAPL): 3M iPads in 1st Weekend

Apple Inc (NASDAQ:AAPL) has the numbers in from its launch weekend of the new iPad Mini, the 7-inch direct competitor to the Kindle Fire by Inc (NASDAQ:AMZN) and the Nexus 7 by Google Inc (NASDAQ:GOOG). Reports show solid opening weekend numbers, a breakdown of components showed decent but below-Apple-standards profit margin, and these numbers may help Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) gain some of its lost market share from the third quarter.

Got all that? Let’s take a deep breath and go through this, one by one.

Apple Inc. (AAPL)

First, let’s start with the last point. Industry research firm IDC sent out its third-quarter report of market share and sales, and noted that Apple Inc (NASDAQ:AAPL) shipped more tablets in the just-completed quarter than it did in the previous year quarter, but the overall market share dipped to 50 percent thanks to a couple reasons – first, customers winding down purchases in expectation of the arrival of a smaller Apple Inc (AAPL) iPad, plus increased competition by Android-run devices from Google Inc (NASDAQ:GOOG), Inc. (NASDAQ:AMZN) and Samsung Electronics Co. Ltd. After owning 60 percent of the market a year ago, Apple now owns 50 percent of the market, though the market has doubled to 28 million units.

Apple Inc (NASDAQ:AAPL) reported 3 million iPads sold during the first three days of launch, which doubled the number of iPad sales when the newest iPad was released in March. The company did not break it down, but estimates are that about 2.3 million of those units are the iPad Mini devices, with about 700,000 of the new iPad 4 models. If the estimate is right, then Apple Inc (NASDAQ:AAPL) blew away expectations of 1-1.5 million Minis sold in the first weekend. And with that increased demand, with IHS teardown revealing that Apple probably paid between $188 and $250 to make its three memory-capacity versions (16 GB, 32 GB, 64 GB), it would appear that Cupertino earned a gross profit of at least $325 million on just iPad Mini sales in the first three days.

Not as high a margin as has been Apple’s history, but still pretty impressive. Would you be satisfied that Apple Inc (NASDAQ:AAPL) is turning a corner after its subpar quarterly earnings report? Do you think investors like billionaire fund manager Julian Robertson of Tiger Management would be pleased with these numbers and would consider stronger positions in the stock? We’d like to receive your comments on this company and this stock. Let us know what you think.