Analyst: Apple will sell 8 million iPads by 2012

One industry analyst says Apple could sell 2 million iPads in 2010 and an additional six million in 2011.

Jim Dalrymple Special to CNET News
Jim Dalrymple has followed Apple and the Mac industry for the last 15 years, first as part of MacCentral and then in various positions at Macworld. Jim also writes about the professional audio market, examining the best ways to record music using a Macintosh. He is a member of the CNET Blog Network and is not an employee of CNET. He currently runs The Loop.
Jim Dalrymple

If analyst predictions are any indication of what the iPad will see in actual sales, it's going to be a good run for Apple.


In a research note to clients on Wednesday, Needham & Company's Charlie Wolf predicted Apple would sell two million iPads in fiscal 2010 and an additional six million devices in 2011, according to a report on AppleInsider.

What's interesting is that Wolf says more than half of the iPad sales would be drawn from the iPod Touch. Many have said that the iPad looks like a larger version of Apple's iPod Touch.

Wolf's predictions certainly aren't at the high end of what analysts are predicting for iPad sales. IDC analyst Richard Shim told CNET last week that he estimates the company will sell 4 million to 5 million iPads this year, doubling Wolf's prediction.

Wolf said he is waiting to see what the iPad's catalyst will be to help Apple boost sales. As examples, he pointed to the iTunes Store for the iPod and the App Store for the iPhone.

It could be that Apple will rely on the infrastructure it built for both of those devices, and iBooks to propel sales of the iPad in the next two years.