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iPad Pro misses 50,000 mark on first month in China, much lower than the iPad Air 2 sales

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Jessica Lee Star/Digital Trends

Apple has been very successful in China, selling millions of iPhone 6S and 6S Plus units this year, but the iPad Pro is not looking so hot in its first month on sale in the country.

According to data collected by Beijing analytics firm TalkingData (via Mashable), the massive 12.9-inch tablet sold less than 50,000 units in the opening month. That might not sound bad, but the iPad Air 2 had sold 550,000 units by that time; ten times more.

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The iPad Mini 4 — launched a few months before the iPad Pro — had similar sales in the first week. However, by the end of the month, the iPad Mini 4 had sold 92,000 units, almost double the iPad Pro.

The iPad Pro is much more expensive than the iPad Mini 4 or iPad Air 2, starting at 5,888 CNY ($900) in China. That might account for the lower sales, though another factor could be the vast array of inexpensive 13-inch tablets and laptops available in China.

Compared to the U.S. and Europe, there is an abundance of white box manufacturers building tablets with a much cheaper price tag. On top of that, China is Lenovo’s hometown, and the manufacturer still sells millions of desktops and laptops each year.

Apple is expected to sell 2.6 million iPad Pro units by the end of the year, according to KGI Securities analyst Ming-Chi Kuo. Most of these sales will be to business and professional customers that want to take advantage of the improved performance, larger display, and first-party accessories on the new tablet.

There are still questions about whether the iPad Pro fixes the tablet dilemma for Apple, most pundits don’t seem convinced. It doesn’t fix the sales issues the iPad Air and iPad Mini are currently facing, instead creating a new demographic where the iPad Pro competes with the Surface Pro 3 and Google Pixel C.