iPad Buyer’s Remorse Is Your Fault

iPad Buyer’s Remorse Is Your Fault

Feeling bitter because you purchased a shiny “new” iPad back in March and there’s a refreshed model due at the beginning of November? You have no-one to blame but yourself.

Picture by Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images/Getty Images

Simply put, there are two clear reasons why you might have purchased a third-generation iPad earlier in the year and now feel regret because the upcoming fourth-generation model offers a few new features, such as the better A6 processor and improved connectivity (including LTE network support):

  • Because you are a technology addict who insists on buying every new piece of Apple hardware as it is released. This is not rational behaviour. Apple is undoubtedly happy to take your money, but you can’t hold it responsible for your decision to keep handing it over.
  • Because you didn’t do your research when you purchased your current iPad to establish if it was suitable for your needs. Again, this comes down to you making a bad decision.

The same applies if you purchased an iPad but are now thinking “wow, that smaller form factor on the iPad Mini would be much more useful for me”. I’m a fan of smaller tablets myself, and for that reason I’ve never owned an iPad. It’s just too large for my needs. As such, I can easily imagine that it might be more useful to have the smaller form factor, but I can’t come up with a rational reason why a single individual would need to own both. (If you have one, please share it in the comments.)

Before someone accuses me of being an Apple fanboy/hater, let’s remember that identical logic applies if you purchased Google’s Android-based Nexus 7 back in July and are now champing at the bit for the new models we’re expecting to see next week. Technology evolves rapidly. You have to accept that a new model will almost certainly come along during the functional lifespan of your current product. You also need to recognise that this doesn’t obviate the usefulness of your existing purchase, provided you made that original purchase for sensible reasons.

Tablets are cheaper and more useful than ever, but they shouldn’t be considered as a casual purchase. Nor should you routinely succumb to the compulsion to buy something new simply because it is new. That’s not good for your budget, and it’s not good for the planet either.


  • It was a early release for a new Ipad, though. I was expecting the Ipad4 in March, not now. Ipad5 in November13 or March13? Im not sure even Apple know right now….

    • I’ve barely followed this but didn’t apple announce they are now following the iPhone release pattern with the iPad from here on out? Expect any new iterations at around the same time as the new iPhone.

      • Not sure where you got that notion from. But it makes sense for apple to position the ipad launches around march and/or october due to their proximity to major holidays (in the US).
        And unlike the phones in general – ipads/tablets dont normally come with a subsidized price from an ISP/telco contract.

  • I love the 7″ size tablets. And it’s definitely a case of technology evolving rapidly. I bought a Kogan tab last June/July which I enjoyed for reading books/pdf and some youtube but it didn’t get much use as a general device because of the single resistive screen. But it was cheap, and I wanted to try a tab for the first time. It still gets occasional use as an ebook reader or digital photo frame.

    I then got a Samsung 7.7 in Feb/March this year, which has been a solid performer, and seeing the price difference just 4 months later with the Nexus7 it was a shock. But I’ve got some other features still like the amoled screen and micro-sd slot which I do make use of. Exactly what you said though – the purchase made sense at the time and I’m still happy with it.

  • Bollocks, you don’t have to be an Apple fanboy to have bought an iPad 3 in the last couple of months at all. There is a third option – you fancied an iPad and the iPad 3 was the best out at the time and so you bought that model. Can you feel aggrieved at this new one,? Yes, if you like. You wouldn’t expect a replacement only a couple of months later or however long it’s been so are entitled to be a little disgruntled if that’s your bag. I personally wouldn’t but then again I don’t even have an iPad.

    Your ‘two’ points are actually quite insulting.

    • what about when you get a tv, or fridge or anything else for that matter that has a new model out almost immediately after you bought it, nothing is the latest and greatest forever but that doesn’t stop it from still doing what it did when you bought it.

    • I don’t think you actually READ this article mr angry-pants. This article is directed at people feeling buyers remorse after purchase. It is most certainly NOT directed at the people you describe who “wanted an ipad so bought the latest one”. People this comfortable in their purchase for said reasons wouldn’t be FEELING buyers remorse for it. How about you calm down next time. This comment actually makes it sound like you ARE an apple fanboy.

  • I only recently got my iPad 3 and you know what? I’m not that bitter about it.. maybe a little.. but at the end of the day your second point holds true for me. I did do my research and at the time, the iPad 3 was the right choice for me.. and that’s why I don’t feel so bad about it. There was most certainly going to be a new one in March 2013.. so whether it’s now or in another 5 months, is inconsequential.

    Having said that, it really comes down to consumer expectations, as per StevenM’s post. And now that Apple have done this, most likely to compete with the Surface, it’s going to create consumer uncertainty.. will there be another iPad in March 2013? Or is now the timetable going to be every October? Or is there going to be no timetable at all from now on. Apple is such a tight-lipped company about these things, that I believe the iPad 4th gen might actually see the worst sales of all the iPads to date..

  • a bit harsh point of view mate

    but then again…most people that i know who purchased an ipad 1, still loving their original ipad
    so it comes down to “fanboi buyers remorse”

    hang on a second…since when fanboi have buyers remorse?

    i stand corrected…

  • Buyers remorse happens a new version is released with a noticeable difference over the current model. The lightning connector, for example. You buy an iPad, carefully researching and working out if it’ll suit your needs. It does, so you buy it.

    Then a few months later, Apple releases another version with a different connector that means any future products you buy (docks, in-car stereos) won’t work unless you have a $30 adapter for each item.

    Buyers remorse? Sounds justified to me.

    But then again, we all know Apple releases a troll product first, then moves on to the updated version they should have released initially (iPhone 3GS, 4S, that hopeless square iPod Nano etc.)

    • But if the buyer did their research they’d have known that the iPad connector is proprietary, and that buying a product with a proprietary connector comes with some risk. Don’t buy it, then have a big cry when it changes.

      • I suppose one could expect things to not really change so drastically, given that Apple have used the same dock for at least 6 years, Just my thought though.

  • I never been in a situation where I actually felt I needed a tablet device for that reason I’ve never owned one.

    I still find this article alittle harsh though I suffer buyers remorse when I spend more than $300 it’s not because I’m cheap or prone to anxiety but because the anticipation for enjoyment ultimately never pans out as long as you expected and the oppurtunity cost dawns on you.

  • I think this article should have been called: iPad Buyer’s NerdRage at Apple is their own fault. Buyer’s remorse is a phenomenon that occurs in all big spending, and often has little to do with alternate products.

  • Amazingly, once the new stuff was announced, my existing iPad 3rd gen didn’t suddenly stop working or slow down.

    In fact, it works just as well as it did last week or last month.

    I think it’s terrible that these people are experiencing this problem – that as soon as the new one is announced, their existing one suddenly isn’t as good as it was.

    I guess I was just lucky.

    • Yup.. mine works great.. does everything I want and need it to 🙂 A new and faster chip would be nice? Sure.. of course.. but it’s not like the upgrade from iPad 2 to 3…. that was a rather large change.. but I’m certainly happy with my iPad 3 🙂

    • The concern for many is that its inevitable obsolescence has been brought forward 6 months. Software is designed for the newest mode, so older models start getting left behind.

      Mine still does what I need it to in iOS 6, so I’m not worried.

      Article is naive and elitist. It ignored important reasons for disappointment and made wild and wrong assumptions.

      Angry, rushed click-bait does not make for a good article. They could have addressed an interesting point in buyers remorse in general, but they used it for a personal rant instead. That belongs on a blog. Disappointed.

    • I understand and agree with you completely, but it is a complete kick to the teeth when you shell out for the latest and greatest when next model is released just over a half a year later. Even the yearly releases are too fast IMO, but Apple markets and sells their brand well.

      • No offence, but tough bikkies? Apple, Microsoft, Google, Holden, Ford, etc etc. These people are not your friends. They are there to make money. That’s not a bad thing – they work for it, they deserve it. It’s our choice. And it’s not our place to be angry at them if they want to improve their products. For everyone who feels ‘kicked in the teeth’, there are 100 more people who are ready to move to a new device, or get one for the first time.

        The whole refresh cycle, ‘waiting to jump on’, that’s the real kick in the teeth for the newcomers.

    • What’s with the tone of this article? Angus got his grumpy pants on today? And somehow suggesting that if you did your homework properly that you’d have known an upgrade was coming in six months??

      I regret nothing – I bought the iPad 3 as my first ever Apple product, use it every day and this release doesn’t change anything.

  • That’s why i love video game consoles, like Wii, PS3, 360, DS etc.

    You can buy one knowing you won’t see a revision for at least 3 years, and a completely new model for at least 5-6 years.

    The $400 I paid for my Wii ….6 years worth of enjoyment:)

    That’s not to say I don’t love my yearly refreshed products. iPhones and iPads etc. It just stings more.

  • Whats the big deal, there’s no need to update … except that for some reason when apple releases software updates they’re riddled with bugs for previous models..coincidence.. i doubt it

  • i think the problem that most people will have is that when you buy something like the latest technology, especially one that’s had such a a strong 12 month life span turnaround, is that you expect it to be the best for 12 months. You buy it thinking it’s the latest tech and that there’ll be nothing better (as in no better version) for at least a year.

    5 or 6 months life span is too quick without warning for me. Don’t get me wrong, i have an ipad 1 and still think it’s fine, but Apple has built a following of the die hards, it’s not like a secret minority, it’s thousands of people queuing up.

  • I bet that schools in Australia who are looking at buying iPad class sets are more impressed that they can buy the new one now, rather than wait awkwardly until March…

  • Dude if they told you they were bringing out a new ipad then people wouldn’t have bought the old one a month ago. How are Apple supposed to sell these things if everyone will just wait for the new and better ipad at the same price? You think Apple made their money by just giving these things away? Much better to make you buy the old one then get you buy the new one too when that comes out and let you worry about selling the old one. They get your money either way.

  • Bugger off Angus,

    Had I known that a better model of iPad was coming out when the iPad 3 was announced I would have waited. I upgraded from the first ipad to the third.

    You’re telling me I shouldn’t be pissed that Apple updated its ipad 6 months early and that its my fault I expected that my $639 purchase in March would be current for a year? Also what about resale value? That just went to crap.

    You are just trolling. I like what you say a lot of the time but this is stupid and I am more insulted at this blog than I was by the iPad 3S/4th gen whatever they want to call it.

    Douchebaggery at its finest.

    • As others have said it’s not as if your current iPad will suddenly stop working now. If you were happy with your iPad yesterday, you should still be happy with it today, regardless of what Apple announced overnight. If you weren’t happy with it yesterday, why did you buy it in the first place?

      So no, you shouldn’t be pissed. If you’re not happy with your current choice of technology, it’s no-one’s fault but your own.

    • Dear person
      I’ve wanted an iPad ever since they came out (I’m a big fan and I liked this product very much) but I decided to wait. As far as I was aware, Apple always tries to be as innovating as possible so I knew as soon as the first one came out that it was perhaps better to wait for a say, third or forth generation device for by then they would’ve upgraded it enormously.

      Sufficient to say, I was right. I wanted to buy the iPad3 but didn’t, because the price is highest when it comes out at first so if you wait for the next one the price will be lower. Keyword: wait for the next one. Face it, there is ALWAYS a NEXT ONE coming. That’s not just an Apple trait, all the other compagnies have it too. You can not expect anyone to say ‘Hmm, this is as far as I’ll ever get with technology, I’ll stop here’. No way. As long as they think they can upgrade, they will. Perhaps not in the ‘big’ steps (version 1 to 2), perhaps just in working out the kinks in a program and letting you upgrade via internet, but they will! Standing still is going backwards.

      And why do you have to have something current? My laptop is a four-year-old MacBook (note that it does not contain ‘pro’) and I still think it hung the moon and stars.

  • I bought the new iPad when it was launched earlier in the year (first tablet purchase). I use it on a daily basis for both work and pleasure. I’m a little surprised that they refreshed the iPad again so soon, but don’t see it as much of a deal. I’m guessing they just chucked in the A6 processor to encourage the transition to the lightning connector. Doesn’t bother me that the new-new iPad has a faster processor. Would I even see the difference in the real world? If you bought a McLaren supercar with a top-speed of 300kmh, then 6 months later they released a new version with a top speed of 600kmh (but all other specs including 0-100kmh time the same), would it make any difference to you? You can’t drive it at that speed (seriously, you’d kill yourself on Australian roads at 300kmh).

    This I show I see the difference between the new-new iPad and the one I bought back in May…for day-to-day usage there probably isn’t one. Is the A6 processor going to make my email load faster? Angry Birds launch quicker? I doubt it. I’ve got 6 months use oit of the iPad I bought in May and there’s no real difference between it and the ne-new iPad. The only people who should feel remorse are those who wasted money on an iPad because they don’t use it enough to justify the purchase.

  • I have an iPhone 4S, and I’m not mad I didn’t wait for the iPhone 5.. Bottom line is, if you wanted an iPad, the iPad 3 was the best available at the time. Constantly holding off purchases because the newer, better version is coming is silly.

  • This article, is missing the key concept of business, “Customer is always right”

    So new devices are so that people buy new devices, if this behaviour did not exisit, the refresh schedule of new devices, would be very slow, as it would mostly be driven by new customers (limted by humans on the planent without a device) and those replacing a no longer working out of warrenty device.

    No one can clearly point out that from Ipad 1 to Ipad 3 that its now a different device, so its purpose remains the same, so why refresh the device, because, the consumer wants the latest, and demands somthing better each time, the business that does, this benifits in sales and the cycle continues.

    So the main two points of this article, are rather ill thought out as reasons why people should not have remorse, apple have changed their behaviour and the public who are sensitive to behaviour changes have responded as per normal.

    Business Strategy, that forgets its consumers sentiment, in light of market forces like Google or Samsung, and now microsoft, is why apple rolled out an out of sechudle update across alot of their product line.

    Apple are not your friend, they want your money and you to believe their the best brand to spend it on.

    P.S i have several Idevices and Android devices, and i have no remorse that i have an ipad 3, or that my iphone 5 uses a different cable.

    Games work on all i devices, so really, no complaint their either.

  • I felt more aggrieved wasting two minutes reading this article and another 10 writing a lengthy rebuttal. So I used my time machine to take it and my iPad back.

  • your points are flawed – I bought one a month an a half ago because I wanted one (my first) thinking that there wont be a new one released so soon after (which suits me more as it has 4G now) so im a bit miffed

    • If you wanted 4G on your tablet, why not buy a tablet that had 4G? Plenty of the iPad competitors do (and compatible with Australia’s networks). Would you rather Apple not release another iPad now? If they didn’t you’d still have the same iPad you are using now? Would you be miffed that you bought it? If not, then why would you be miffed simply because there’s a better one available? How does your life change if you’re using an iPad 3 when there’s an iPad 4 out, compared to if you’re using an iPad 3 with no iPad 4 available?

  • I bought the “New iPad” the night it came out, because I was pleased with their products, and I was looking on their website today, and I was asking myself, “What in the world? When does the New iPad have a lightning connecter?”, But overall it doesn’t, this is the Newer iPad “4”; supposed to be; coming out, stated to be around November 2nd, 1012. So due to this, i’ll most likely be selling my iPad 3/New iPad to some other needy person who cannot fully afford one at 500$ before the iPad 4 comes out. I’ll be spending that money on something more productive. I am actually quite dissatisfied with Apple Inc., and will not be buying anymore products from their company. Maybe I can get a sell in from someone before the time comes for the iPad 4 to be released and before it looses anymore value than it is; in present day.

  • I think if you bought the iPad 3 you were a bit silly to be honest, the specifications on that were pretty poor to what could have been on it. I’ve been waiting now, because I think Apple’s best products are always a few generations in. I have an iPad and Tab from work, so not too hard to do, but I’ve always thought the mini was the real deal, as if you’ve carried an iPad for long enough, you know they are still quite weighty.

    So yeah, I think the remorse is your fault – if you just knew what to expect it could have gone a bit better for you, if you ‘needed’ an iPad at the time well then that’s how the dice rolls. I used to work with one of the big camera companies and releases only end up steamrolling you – so best to just wait for specs you want and would be happy with.

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