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iPad sales reach 25M milestone, Apple on track for 8M+ this quarter

Apple this week revealed that iPad sales have reached 25 million in just 14 months, a sum that also suggests the company is on pace to exceed sales of 8 million touchscreen tablets this quarter.

Apple announced the milestone of 25 million iPad sales on Monday in its Worldwide Developers Conference keynote. The data point was picked up on by Wall Street analysts.

Brian White with Ticonderoga Securities noted that by the end of the March quarter, Apple had sold a total of 19.48 million iPads. The announcement of 25 million sold means that Apple has sold at least 5.52 million iPads in the first two months of the June quarter.

If sales were to continue at that pace, that would put Apple on track to sell 8.28 million iPads in the June quarter. That's a number well ahead of the 4.69 million iPads sold in the March quarter, suggesting Apple has managed to address its inventory issues with the hot-selling iPad 2.

Analyst Gene Munster with Piper Jaffray put the numbers even more in perspective, determining that Apple is selling about 87,000 iPads per day in the June quarter, based on Apple's numbers. He expects Apple to sell around 8 million in the quarter, a number higher than the 7 million he had previously predicted.

Chris Whitmore with Deutsche Bank said investors on Wall Street have been looking for Apple to report sales of 7.5 million iPads in the current quarter, which concludes at the end of June. If Apple were to report sales higher than 8 million, it would exceed expectations.

Mark Moskowitz of J.P. Morgan Research took a slightly different view from his peers, suggesting that the implied sales of 5.5 million iPads so far in the quarter could create "controversy." He suggested the sales pace could mean Apple could fall short of "bullish investor expectations" of 7.5 million units or more.

While Moskowitz's offers a different take on the numbers, he also said he is not worried about the iPad data point provided by Apple on Monday, as "there is plenty of time in the quarter." J.P. Morgan has predicted sales of 6.75 million iPads in the June quarter.

The iPad first went on sale in the U.S. in early April of 2010. It took 28 days for the device to reach its first million sales, and the device's popularity has only accelerated as availability has improved and Apple has expanded to more markets.

The launch of the iPad 2 in March was even more successful, but Apple struggled to keep up with demand for the second-generation device. Apple Chief Operating Officer Tim Cook characterized his company's situation as "the mother of all backlogs" during his company's quarterly earnings conference call

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