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iPad market share drops by 14 percent in Q3

updated 06:44 pm EST, Tue November 27, 2012

Apple tablets still dominate overall sales

The iPad continues to dominate the tablet market, however a report published by ABI Research suggests competing tablets continue to chip away at Apple's market share. The iPad lineup is said to account for 55 percent of tablet shipments in the third quarter, marking a 14 percent drop from the previous quarter and Apple's lowest share since the original iPad debuted two years ago.

Shipment numbers from Samsung, Amazon and ASUS follow behind Apple, as Google's mobile OS is now utilized by 44 percent of tablet shipments, according to ABI's report. iOS and Android together represent 99 percent of tablet shipments, leaving little room for RIM's BlackBerry PlayBook or Windows-powered tablets.

"As the OS of choice for the majority of device OEMs, we expect the Android ecosystem to continue growing in numbers -- new manufacturers, better device choices for reaching more markets, and more developers finding value from apps and content," said ABI senior practice director Jeff Orr.

The research firm suggests that Apple's new iPad mini, which was not included in the third-quarter analysis, will not take market share back from Android, however it is expected to cause demand for standard iPad models to "shift down-market."

"With the introduction of a smaller, lower-cost iPad mini, Apple has acknowledged Android's beachhead of 7-inch-class tablets, though at the same time, it has failed to deliver a knock-out punch through innovation, pricing, and availability during the most critical selling period of the year," Orr said.

Despite the apparent gain in Android tablet share observed by ABI Research, shipment numbers to retail stores may not accurately reflect actual sell-through to customers. IBM's Benchmark Service, which tracked customer transactions from over 500 retailers, found that the iPad accounted for more than 88 percent of Black Friday tablet sales. Although the IBM report focuses on one particular day, the data casts doubt on Android's impact to iPad market share.

A recent Nielsen survey suggests the iPad tops holiday wish lists of children and teens in the US. A separate survey conducted by security company Avast further indicated that nearly a third of respondents were planning to purchase an iPad as their next computing device, instead of another PC.



By Electronista Staff
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Comments

  1. Spheric Harlot

    Clinically Insane

    Joined: 11-07-99

    Again with the "shipments" vs. actual sales?

  1. cljmac

    Fresh-Faced Recruit

    Joined: 09-23-05

    not just that but these guys are counting shipped kindle fires as android devices. i dont think that should count. they are called ereaders at most stores.

  1. panjandrum

    Junior Member

    Joined: 12-01-04

    This news, along with the news that Android is truly beginning to dominate sales numbers, is probably not as worrying to the youth reading this site as it is to those of us that lived through the early and middle years the home computer market. Unfortunately there appears to be nothing: not a strong enthusiast base; not facts supporting that user-base far exceeds "market share" (based on sales numbers); not clear hardware or software advantages; that will keep developers and media interested in a platform except for "market share". Ask any Amiga, Atari or (later) Mac owner as we watched superior (sometimes VASTLY superior) systems receive less and less developer support, then less and less media coverage, which snowballed into less and less actual user-base. We watched as innovation after innovation fell before stagnation and "status quo", all because the so-called "market share" appeared to support an overwhelming preference for cheap and indescribably horrible Wintel boxes. Competition is always good, and hopefully Apple will be forced to innovate because of competition. But hopefully Apple can keep their "Market Share" (again, this is NOT the same as user-base) high-enough that we won't enter another dark age of computing, when only a few extremely marginalized companies were in any way truly creative (Be, for example, before they switch to Intel and thus doomed their system).

  1. Bobfozz

    Fresh-Faced Recruit

    Joined: 07-28-08

    While all of the above writers are on the mark, one wonders whether these ANAL-ysts ever read our input. Their idea of market share does NOT include profit. MacNN correctly points out that the Mac stuff overwhelmingly won out on Black Friday over Android. It might be interesting to know why.

  1. Randian

    Fresh-Faced Recruit

    Joined: 10-01-11

    It is abundantly clear that no part of this "study/survey" includes iPad Mini numbers, for they have just recently started shipping/being delivered. And that is a fact. (My wife just got hers yesterday.) This same "article" will show vastly different numbers in the next quarter. Guaranteed!

  1. davesmall

    Fresh-Faced Recruit

    Joined: 10-20-06

    What you have here is a herd of iPad wannabe manufacturers churning out cheap plastic iPad knock-offs and hoping that price concessions will give them sustainable market share.

    There will always be a market for cheap plastic fake iPads. Apple won't go there.

    Those inferior products serve to validate Apple as the market leader.

  1. FreeRange

    Fresh-Faced Recruit

    Joined: 07-03-09

    Totally bullshit survey. First, most kindle devices are not "tablets" but simply e-readers which is a totally different category yet they still get lumped in. Second, their assumptions about the iPad mini are absolutely laughable! Apple can't make these products fast enough and they still haven't launched in all markets. Demand continues to outstrip supply across the board for Apple.

  1. Zanziboy

    Forum Regular

    Joined: 08-27-08

    This report is a re-run. Essentially, iPad sales slowed in Q3 due to iPad Mini rumors. Sadly, Q4 (which is Apple's Q1) is fraught with production shortages (e.g. delayed launch of LTE iPad Mini). I would not be surprised if the numbers for Q4 are slightly down as well.

  1. Aaron Smith

    Fresh-Faced Recruit

    Joined: 11-27-12

    It's not just slowing sales due to anticipated launches. Google and Amazon released an updated line of tablets that are very competitive on price with the iPad. At the end of the day I bought an iPad mini, but I'm wed to the iOS ecosystem. Google and Amazon are both starting to look like credible threats to the iPad. But still...14%? It's not really much for Apple to worry about, yet. Come next year, they will rev the iPad mini, and the current version will drop in price significantly. And while Google and Amazon continue to sell at break even, and HOPE that users lock in to their ecosystems, Apple is making bank on each device sold, and the ecosystem profit is just the cream on top. Not to mention the fact that you can use all three to buy your media with an Apple device. I welcome the competition in the market, as I think there is still a ton of innovation left in the tablet space, and things can only get better. But Apple still has a huge lead...for now.

  1. apostle

    Junior Member

    Joined: 04-16-08

    I think a more fair comparison, statistically, would be what amount of market share does Apple hardware running iOS have versus Google hardware running Android. Any non-Google hardware running Android doesn't really count as they are running an OS developed and supported by someone other than themselves. Bottom line I think is that Android clones can sell at a lower price than Apple. Their hardware is generally made of less expensive materials and they don't have to spend any money developing and supporting an OS. The "general consumer" is usually not tech-savvy and buys a phone because it looks cool, their friends recommended it and/or the price is right.

  1. Grendelmon

    Mac Enthusiast

    Joined: 12-26-07

    Originally Posted by davesmallView Post

    There will always be a market for cheap plastic fake iPads. Apple won't go there.



    Huh? Why would Apple make "cheap plastic fake iPads" ?

    If you MEANT to say that Apple won't compete in the more affordable tablet market, they just did with the iPad Mini.

  1. Spheric Harlot

    Clinically Insane

    Joined: 11-07-99

    Originally Posted by GrendelmonView Post

    If you MEANT to say that Apple won't compete in the more affordable tablet market, they just did with the iPad Mini.



    Depending upon your viewpoint, they're not competing in the "more affordable" aka cheap shit plastic market.

    They're competing in the smaller-form-factor market.

    People are still complaining that the mini is way overpriced (compared to the manufacturers who aren't making profits).

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