1 in 4 iPad purchases made by first time Apple buyers
The report, which surveyed more than 3,000 consumers across the US, suggests iPad is performing a function previously fulfilled by the iPod: serving as a 'gateway' product to the Apple brand.
The gateway device
"iPad sales are growing much faster than any other Apple product has this soon after launch," explained Ben Arnold, NPD's director of industry analysis.
"In fact, one in five Apple owner households has one - nearly equivalent to the number that own an Apple computer. This demonstrates the appeal of both the new form factor and Apple's app ecosystem."
While 70 percent of 'long standing Apple owners' say iPod was their first Apple purchase, that figure falls to 57 percent in the case of consumers who have joined the Apple train within the last two years.
NPD claims the fact MP3 playback is now incorporated into other portable devices means newcomers are increasingly being drawn towards non iPod devices, like iPhone and iPad.
Together, bith account for one third of all first-time Apple purchases since 2010.