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Apple iPad run rate hits 2m units a month

Bad news for netbook makers

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A small snippet of information this, but Apple has ordered enough components to assemble as many as 2.4m iPads this month - and is expected to order the same quantity on a monthly basis through the summer.

The figure comes from Taiwanese newssite DigiTimes' research wing, and is a strong sign that the iPad is proving to be a success.

Interestingly, more than half of the units being produced - up to 60 per cent - are thought to be 3G-enabled models. That suggests punters are picking up the devices with a view to taking them off on summer holidays.

If the monthly estimate is correct, that will put the quarter's total iPad shipments at around 6m units - double previously forecast totals for Q2: just over 3m, according to market watcher DisplaySearch.

Apple is clearly accepting good sales through the summer and into the back-to-school period.

DisplaySearch's figures put the combined total number of netbooks and tablets at just under 10m units worldwide these days - where it's been for the past four quarters. If Apple does shift 6m iPads then that's bad news for netbook manufacturers - it's six million machines they won't themselves sell.

Netbooks may also rise in the back-to-school period, of course. But it's hard to see them matching the estimated growth of the Apple gadget. ®

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