Worldwide consumer tablet sales are forecasted to reach 118.9 million units in 2012, according to market research firm Gartner. The figure represents a 98% increase from 2011, when Gartner says 60 million media tablets were sold. The firm predicts Apple’s iPad will continue to be the dominant tablet and is projected to account for 61.4% of worldwide sales in 2012, despite the success of Amazon’s Kindle Fire and the arrival of Microsoft’s Windows 8 platform. Read on for more. More →
Skyhook Wireless CEO Ted Morgan claims that a “major” non-Google Android smartphone will be released at the end of this year. The handset will reportedly be based on the Android operating system, however it will not be controlled by Google — similar to Amazon’s Kindle Fire. “I’m spending a lot of time with companies forking Android,” Morgan said to Technology Review. “Nobody wants to just be a manufacturer for Google. You see that with what Amazon has done, where they made it their own, and you also see a whole host of manufacturers taking Android down their own path.” Read on for more. More →
Apple is reportedly “noodling with” a smaller 7.85-inch iPad model in its labs, according to John Gruber of Daring Fireball. Gruber revealed the information on an episode of The Talk Show after host Dan Benjamin asked if Apple was going to come out with a smaller tablet. “Well, I don’t know. What I do know is that they have one in the lab…a 7.85 inch iPad that runs at 1024×768… it’s just like the regular iPad shrunk down a bit,” Gruber said. “I’ve heard from multiple people that this is something that they’re kind of noodling with.” He went on to say that he has not heard anything regarding Apple’s plans to release the smaller model, and it is unclear if it will ever make it to market. Gruber speculated that Apple may have prepared the prototype in response to the Kindle Fire. He also suggested that it could possibly be unveiled at the Cupertino-based company’s Worldwide Developers Conference, since it’s unlikely that Apple will unveil a new iPhone at the event. We have seen numerous rumors regarding a smaller 7.85-inch iPad in the past. The slate is expected to be priced in the $249 to $299 range and could launch in the third quarter of 2012. More →
Amazon may bring three new versions of its Kindle Fire tablet to market in 2012, according to a report from Taiwan Economic News. Matching up with earlier rumors that have suggested the retail giant would introduce a larger device, the site reports that Amazon is readying an 8.9-inch model with a screen resolution of 1,920 x 1,200 pixels. The publication also suggested that Amazon will introduce a low-end 7-inch model with a resolution of 1,024 x 600 pixels, as well as a medium to high-end 7-inch model that will include a 1,280 x 800-pixel display. While Apple CEO Tim Cook claimed that Amazon’s tablet had no impact on iPad sales, the Kindle Fire managed to capture 14% of the tablet market in its debut quarter. More →
BGR exclusively reported nearly a year ago that Amazon was working on two new devices that would push the retail giant beyond eReaders and into the tablet space. The first, a dual-core Tegra 2-powered slate, would launch six months later as the Kindle Fire and propel Amazon into the No.2 spot among global tablet vendors after just half a quarter of availability. The second tablet was said to be a 10-inch offering powered by NVIDIA’s quad-core Tegra 3 chipset, but we have yet to see it materialize. Numerous reports have suggested that the larger Kindle Fire was pushed back from its originally scheduled debut, and the tablet will now launch in the second quarter this year. While Amazon has yet to reveal any plans for a larger Kindle Fire, DigiTimes reported on Thursday that the company placed initial chassis orders with Taiwan-based Catcher Technology for a new Kindle Fire tablet, suggesting production could begin soon. The report did not specify the size of the chassis on order. More →
Amazon on Thursday announced that its mobile marketplace, the Amazon Appstore, is celebrating its first birthday. The company is kicking of its celebration with a week of deals on some of its most popular apps. “Customers have used the Amazon Appstore to test drive and buy millions of apps and games for their Kindle Fire and other Android devices in the first year alone,” said Aaron Rubenson, director of Amazon Appstore for Android. “To thank customers for shopping with us, we worked closely with our developers to offer special discounts on some of the most popular apps all week long.” Amazon’s selection of Android apps has grown nearly eight-fold since it launched last year, from 4,000 apps to over 31,000. In its first year, the most downloaded paid app was Cut the Rope, followed by Angry Birds and Where’s My Water. The most downloaded free app was Angry Birds Free Edition, followed by Netflix and Solitaire by MobilityWare. Read on for Amazon’s press release. More →
Tablet shipments increased 56.1% in the fourth quarter of 2011 to 28.2 million units worldwide, according to market research firm IDC. A total of 68.7 million tablets were shipped in 2011, up 155% over 2010. Apple shipped 15.4 million iPads in the fourth quarter representing 54.7% of the global market, down from 61.5% in the third quarter of 2011. Amazon shipped an estimated 4.7 million Kindle fire tablets to grab 16.8% of the global market, while Samsung increased from a 5.5% share in the third quarter to 5.8% in the fourth. Barnes & Noble, despite shipping more units than in the previous quarter, saw its worldwide market share fall from 4.5% to 3.5% in the fourth quarter. Pandigital rounded out the top five with a 2.5% of the market share. IDC predicts that low-cost Android tablets will help Google’s mobile platform overtake Apple’s market share by 2015, however iOS will remain more profitable. Read on for IDC’s press release.
Amazon’s popular Kindle Fire is seen as having a huge impact on eReader shipments in the first quarter of 2012. The 7-inch Android tablet burst onto the scene in November and with less than seven weeks of availability in the fourth quarter, it managed to secure Amazon 14% of the global tablet market according to IHS iSupply. Demand for the Kindle Fire has remained strong in the first quarter — the slate is still Amazon’s best-selling electronics device for the 16th week running — and according to DigiTimes Research, eReader shipments will take a huge hit this quarter as a result. A seasonal decline from the holiday quarter to the first quarter is always anticipated, but DigiTimes’s research arm sees global eBook reader shipments dropping from 9 million units in the December quarter to just 2 million this quarter, a 78% decline. DigiTimes Research still projects solid eReader shipment growth in the coming years, however, as sales into channels jump from an estimated 22.82 million units in 2011 to more than 60 million units by 2015. More →
Amazon is reportedly preparing to launch a new 6-inch color E Ink eReader as soon as next month, followed by a 10-inch Kindle Fire tablet some time in the second quarter this year. E Ink Holdings has received initial orders for Amazon’s a 6-inch color eReader according to DigiTimes, a device that would be Amazon’s first eBook reader to feature a color E Ink display. The retail giant is reportedly looking to have more than 3 million color eReaders built each month, and shipments are scheduled to begin in March. In a separate report, DigiTimes reaffirms recent rumors that a 10-inch Kindle Fire will begin shipping in the second quarter this year. The report states that Foxconn has been awarded the manufacturing contract for Amazon’s 10-inch Fire while Wintron will begin ODM production of a Nook Tablet for Barnes & Noble around the same time. It is unclear if the Barnes & Noble tablet mentioned in the report is a new model or the current tablet. More →
Barnes & Noble may be planning to launch a new version of its Nook Tablet at the same $199 price point that has helped Amazon’s Kindle Fire retain its spot atop Amazon’s best-selling electronics list since its launch last year. According to a purported internal memo circulated at Walmart and obtained by The Verge, the new version of Barnes & Noble’s popular Nook Tablet will launch on Tuesday. The only known difference between the current Nook Tablet and the new version is the slate’s internal storage, which will be cut in half from 16GB to 8GB. Pricing is not mentioned in the memo, but Barnes & Noble’s 16GB tablet is currently listed at $249. Considering the downsized flash storage chip and the Kindle Fire’s $199 price tag, a new sub-$200 price tag is a safe bet if this rumor pans out. A screenshot of the purported memo follows below. More →
Amazon is reportedly preparing to launch a follow up to the company’s wildly successful Kindle Fire. The specs have not yet been finalized, however Amazon is expected to deliver samples to manufacturers by March, according to the China Times. The publication states that a 10-inch OEM device from Foxconn could be the final product. The report comes just after Pacific Crest analyst Chad Bartley claimed that Amazon plans to release an updated 7-inch tablet and a brand new 9-inch slate in mid-2012. BGR exclusively reported last May that Amazon was working on a 10-inch tablet, although a later report would suggest that Amazon was focusing on launching a new 8.9-inch device first. The next-generation Kindle Fire is expected to launch by the end of the second quarter. More →
Amazon’s Kindle Fire exploded onto the scene last November, quickly becoming one of the hottest gadget gifts for the holidays and maintaining its position atop Amazon’s best-sellers list for several months. According to a new report issued by market research firm IHS iSuppli, the Kindle Fire managed to secure 14% of the tablet market last quarter despite only being available for just over six weeks. ISuppli estimates that the retail giant shipped approximately 3.9 million Kindle Fire tablets in the fourth quarter of 2011, making it the No.2 tablet vendor in the world behind Apple, which saw its market share slide to 57% from 64% in the third quarter. Samsung shipped 2.1 million Galaxy tablets for 8% of the global market, Barnes & Noble shipped 1.9 million Nook tablets and Asus rounded out the top-5 with 612,000 tablets shipped. IHS iSuppli’s full press release follows below. More →
Amazon is reportedly preparing to launch an updated 7-inch Kindle Fire alongside a brand new 9-inch tablet this summer. Pacific Crest analyst Chad Bartley on Thursday raised his full-year Kindle Fire shipment forecast to 14.9 million units, up from his earlier estimate of 12.7 million. “We believe there is an upward bias, particularly from the new 7- and 9-inch models, which we expect to launch in mid-2012,” Bartley wrote in a note to clients. BGR exclusively reported last May that Amazon was working on two tablet models, the 7-inch “Coyote” that ended up launching at the Kindle Fire last November, and the quad-core 10-inch “Hollywood.” A later report would suggest that Amazon tweaked its tablet roadmap, however, pushing the release of its 10-inch model back in order to first launch a new 8.9-inch tablet. Bartley also lowered his shipment estimates on Amazon’s E Ink Kindle eReaders from 28.6 million units to 24 million units.