The Numbers On The iPad’s Debut

Taking stock of the iPad’s debut with the help of some metrics being talked about on the web:

»  The lines: “Hundreds” Saturday morning at the Fifth Avenue retail store, which in part led a Needham & Co. analyst to say that sales would top 300,000 for the week-end — and could potentially reach 500,000. Piper Jaffray’s Gene Munster, meanwhile, polled various Apple (NSDQ: AAPL) stores and estimates the company will sell between 600,000 and 700,000 iPads over the same period. By contrast, Apple sold roughly 270,000 iPhones during that device’s first two days on the market in 2007.

»  The apps: On Sunday, there were 3,122 iPad apps in the iTunes store, up from 2,300 when it launched on Thursday. Of these, 80 percent are paid, while 20 percent are free, says TechCrunch, which cites data provided by mobile ad exchange Mobclix. That’s roughly in line with the free/paid break-down when the iTunes app store launched.

As for what’s being downloaded, it’s different than what’s going on the iPhone. There is no overlap between the top 10 most popular paid apps on the iPad and iPhone. Same with free. One possible reason: iPhone apps work on the iPad too and presumably a large percentage of iPad buyers already own iPhones, so they don’t necessarily need to download an iPad version of an app they already have on their iPhone.

»  Popular sentiment: A roughly equal number of negative and positive views about the device on Twitter – with about 130,842 negative sentiments to 126,400 positive ones. Select common positive terms: “Rocks, surfing, tweetie.” The negative: “battery,” “expensive,” “crashes.” Explains TechCrunch: “All of this iPad mania is splitting people into two even camps: either you are one of the few who is lovingly stroking one in your hands right now (or wish you were), or you don