Motorola Xoom sales forecast cut by a quarter after overwhelming iPad 2 launch

Apple Motorola Xoom

Nice try - Motorola hoped to stir up a rebellion against Apple with its Super Bowl ad for the Xoom.

WHEN it debuted in February, Motorola's Xoom tablet was widely described as the first comparable competitor to Apple's iPad.

While it may be comparable, it's not proving to be much of a rival.

Motorola Mobility has sold just 100,000 Xoom tablets to date, according to Deutsche Bank estimates yesterday.

While that's in line with its estimates of 50,000 units in the company's first quarter and 150,000 in its second, it's a long way off from the iPad.

Apple is believed to have sold 300,000 iPads on its first day alone.

RBC Capital Markets analyst Mark Sue described Xoom sales as "slow" - so slow that he lopped 25 per cent off his current quarter forecast, dropping it to 300,000 units.

And at technology-focused investment bank Pacific Crest, analyst James Faucette said sales of the Xoom were "well below forecast", thanks to the debut of the iPad 2 so soon after the Xoom's official launch.

"Based on our checks, we believe overall sell-through trends for the Xoom … have been disappointing," Mr Faucette said.

Those new reports underscored earlier concerns that the $US800 Xoom was having trouble gaining traction in the market. A similarly-equipped iPad 2 sells for $US730.

In March, US investment bank Jeffries cut its price target on Motorola Mobility largely because of the Xoom.

"Xoom sales have been underwhelming," it said.

"While marketing has just started, we believe (Motorola) will likely have to cut production if it already has not done so."

On the bright side, reviews for the Xoom - which dominated the buzz at January's Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas - have been largely positive.

This week, Consumer Reports named it the second-best tablet computer for sale now.

It still, however, came up short against the iPad 2, the influential quality testing magazine said.

- AllThingsDigital


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