Tablets clearly haven’t seen the kind of adoption that the industry was expecting when the original iPad was introduced by Apple in 2010. The reality has now begun to emerge as the worldwide tablet shipments dropped for the first time in Q4, 2014.
According to a research report by IDC, the overall shipments of the tablets and two-in-one devices were just 76.1 million units in Q4, down 3.2 percent year-over-year. While the Q4 shipment declined, the yearly shipments were still able to show a modest 4.4 percent growth with 229.6 million shipments.
“The tablet market is still very top heavy in the sense that it relies mostly on Apple and Samsung to carry the market forward each year. Although Apple expanded its iPad lineup by keeping around older models and offering a lower entry price point of $249, it still wasn’t enough to spur iPad sales given the excitement around the launch of the new iPhones. Meanwhile, Samsung’s struggles continued as low-cost vendors are quickly proving that mid- to high-priced Android tablets simply aren’t cut out for today’s tablet market,” said Jitesh Ubrani, Senior Research Analyst, Worldwide Quarterly Tablet Tracker.
In terms of the manufacturers, Apple continue to reign with 28.1 percent share, followed by Samsung with 14.5 percent share, Lenovo with 4.8 percent share and Asus with 4 percent share.
IDC is still hopeful about the future of the tablet market, but the situation will be become clear in the next few quarters.
“Despite an apparent slow-down of the market, we maintain our forecast about tablet growth in 2015,” said Jean Philippe Bouchard, Research Director, Tablets.