This is a guest post written by Hans Bradock, If you want to contribute guest post on this blog, check out the guidelines and join our information sharing program.
Since the new iPad was launched, analysts have been making bold predictions about the tablet market as a whole. According to the information technology research company Gartner, by the end of the year we can expect to see a 98% increase in tablet
sales from 2011. Whilst some 60 million units were sold last year, almost 120 million will be sold by the end of 2012. Clearly, this is a huge increase. And apparently it’s not going to stop . If Gartner’s predictions are accurate, tablet sales will reach the 370 million mark by 2016. In short, the tablet market is bigger than ever and will continue to explode over the coming years.
And yet in this tablet market one manufacturer continues to reign supreme – Apple. Boosted by the launch of the new iPad, Apple’s tablet sales have apparently skyrocketed and the Cupertino giant is expected to hold a 61.4% market share in 2012.
Exactly how many new iPads Apple were sold in the last quarter remains unknown, though most estimates put it between 9 and 15 million. We are also told that the new iPad sold 3 million units in 3 days – a record according to Apple. When you remember that a huge number of consumers still buy the ipad 2as well, you can begin to imagine just how many tablets Apple have sold since the turn of the year. It’s not hard to see why analysts are expecting them to dominate the tablet market in 2012, just as they did in 2010 and 2011.
The next largest share of the tablet market will be owned by Android tablets, which are expected to account for almost 32% of sales by the end of the year. Experts have been wondering for months whether Android tablets can truly compete with the iPad, with the majority concluding that they cannot. The general consenus is that they fall short in the apps department. According to Apple, there are over 200,000 apps for the iPad – a figure that dwarfs the number of apps dedicated to Android tablets.
Microsoft are expected to have just a 4.1% share of the market, though this is partly due to the fact that their Windows 8 tablets probably won’t be released until late into the year. On the other hand, though, there are several analysts aren’t expecting that much even when they arrive. Gartner, for instance, predict that Windows 8 will have a 8.5% share of the market in 2013 and roughly 12% the following year. These forecasts are significanly lower than the figures Microsoft hopes to hit. According to recent reports, Microsoft and Intel believe themselves capable of reducing Apple’s share of the tablet market to less than 50%.
If Gartner are right, 2012 will see more tablets sold than ever before. That much is certain. Moreover, the trend is set to continue into 2013, with tablets threatening to outsell traditional PCs. Almost all analysts agree that Apple will continue to hold by far the largest share of the market, whilst the fate of Microsfort tablets appears to be difficult to predict. The
majority of commentators, however, do not share Microsoft’s enthusiasm and confidence in the Windows 8 tablets. But one thing is for sure – we can expect to see companies continuing to compete with Apple as the tablet market expands across the world. The future of computer technology is set to be extremely exciting.
[Optional author bio: Hans Bradock blogs about tablet trends and other gadget news. His interests include Apple, Microsoft, smartphones and tablets]