eBay reveals its iPad 2 sales data

The online auction site has enabled the resale of nearly 12,000 iPad 2s in the two weeks following its launch in the U.S. Find out where they went.

Josh Lowensohn Former Senior Writer
Josh Lowensohn joined CNET in 2006 and now covers Apple. Before that, Josh wrote about everything from new Web start-ups, to remote-controlled robots that watch your house. Prior to joining CNET, Josh covered breaking video game news, as well as reviewing game software. His current console favorite is the Xbox 360.
Josh Lowensohn
3 min read

While the wait continues for the official number of iPad 2s sold by Apple since its launch earlier this month, eBay this morning is sharing a peek at two weeks of iPad 2 buying activity from its U.S. site.

Unsurprisingly the hard-to-get tablet has been moving briskly on the service, reaching just less than 12,000 sales in the two-week period between the U.S. launch and the iPad 2's launch in 25 additional international countries.

What is surprising this time around is that eBay's data shows a much higher percentage of iPads selling inside of the U.S. compared with the launch of the first-generation device. That number is 65 percent of sales remaining in the U.S., compared to just 35 percent in 2010.

Nonetheless, people are exporting to other countries, which eBay has been tracking and plots out in the infographic embedded below. The two biggest export locations are Canada and Russia, followed closely by Hong Kong, Japan, and the United Kingdom. Of special note is Russia, having been the receiver of 500 iPad 2s, compared with 215 of the original device during the same time in 2010. Last year's eBay iPad numbers had also pegged Russia as the biggest importer of 16GB iPads, as well as having the highest average mark-up on the 32GB model at $306 over retail. By comparison, one of the big droppers was Australia, which went from 317 units in last year's iPad to 110 with the new model.

Two weeks of iPad 2 sales on eBay, and where they went. (Click to enlarge)
Two weeks of iPad 2 sales on eBay, and where they went. (Click to enlarge) eBay

eBay averaged out the selling price of the various models (excluding color and type of 3G), which sit well above Apple's own retail pricing. For instance, the 16GB Wi-Fi only iPad 2, which retails for $499 had an average selling price of $697, which is $198 higher. It goes up from there, hitting a $264 premium on the 64GB model, and a staggering $406 average premium on the top-of-the-line 64GB model with built-in 3G. One thing to keep in mind here is that part of that amount ends up going to eBay in the form of a listing fee, as well as any other fees associated with payment options or reserve fees. It's also an average, meaning not everyone was selling it at the same price.

As far as the most popular models, eBay has the entry-level 16GB model topping the charts at 30 percent of sales, followed by the aforementioned 64GB 3G model at 23 percent. The 32GB Wi-Fi only model comes in third place at 17 percent. The two least-liked models from the looks of the data are the first two models with 3G, with the 16GB and the 32GB models 7 percent and 9 percent, respectively. However that could be due more to availability than user preference considering the popularity of the high-end model with 3G.

While eBay's numbers represent just a piece of the estimated sales of the iPad 2 from Apple's retail stores and other retailers, it provides a very interesting look at which models are the most popular and how much users are willing to pay on top of the price tag in order to get their hands on one. Besides auctions, eBay has also jumped into the trade-in space, offering an Instant Sale program that original iPad owners can use to hand-off the sale to eBay in exchange for money up front. In a release preceding the U.S. launch of the iPad 2, the company said that 38,000 Instant Sale offers had been made on original iPads as part of the program, with 22,000 of those being made in the week following the iPad 2's announcement.

Embedded below is last year's chart for comparison:

Last year's iPad eBay sales movement in the two week window following its launch in the U.S.
Last year's iPad eBay sales movement in the two week window following its launch in the U.S. (click to enlarge) eBay