The loyalty of Apple customers is well-documented, but according to the latest research data from NPD, iOS devices are doing a good job of raking in new customers, too. For over one in four iPad owners, the tablet is their very first Apple product. 33% of U.S. homes have an Apple product nestled inside somewhere, and of them, one in five houses an iPad - just about as many as those that own Mac computers. The trend marks a decline in iPod as the primary gateway to the wonderful world of Apple for many consumers; within the last two years, 57% reported the iPod as their first Apple gadget, versus 70% historically. One particularly interesting statistic uncovered by NPD is that almost 30% of Apple fans have a smartphone that isn't an iPhone.
One of the hallmarks of Apple products is their simplicity, which means a nice, low barrier for entry when it comes to late adopters. Android, by comparison, tends to be overwhelming for the less technologically-inclined. The fact that the iPad is appealing just as much to first-timers as Mac computers adds at least a bit of credence to Apple's supposed "post-PC" era, but those that are late to the game with gadgets likely have modest computing demands, and for them, the iPad is all the computer they need. I would be curious to hear about how many of those new iPad owners move on to get a Mac of any kind. Also, how many of these first-time Apple owners are hardened PC or Android users migrating to iOS or OS X?
Was the iPad your first Apple product? Did you manage to convince any friends to switch to Apple with the new iPad? I could imagine it's getting harder and harder to say no to Apple products these days, regardless of which part of the computing world you're coming from...