Tablet shipments following the 2010 holiday season dropped by more than a quarter according to market watcher IDC, but the firm still raised its full-year forecast in its latest Worldwide Quarterly Media Tablet and eReader Tracker report. First-quarter 2011 tablet shipments were down by 28% sequentially according to IDC, due to iPad shipments that were “well below expectations.” Yet the firm has high hopes for Apple’s iPad 2 tablet in 2011, and it raised its full-year shipment estimates to 53.5 million units from 50.4 million units as a result. Apple isn’t the only company finding success with tablets, however, as Android tablets were up 8.2 points sequentially to 34% of total shipments in the first quarter according to IDC. “Like the PC market, Media Tablets had a bit of a challenging quarter in Q1, as concerns about general macroeconomic issues and the post-holiday letdown took a toll on demand,” said IDC’s VP of Clients and Displays Bob O’Donnell in a statement. “We expect the rest of the year to be much stronger, but we believe vendors who continue to focus on the telco channel for distribution will face serious challenges.” O’Donnell’s colleague Jennifer Song, IDC Research Analyst, added, “Although media tablet sales were not as high as expected in 1Q11 due to slower consumer demand, overall economic conditions, and supply-chain constraints, we believe with the entrance of competitive new devices in second half of 2011, the market will sell close to 53 million units for the year and continue to grow long-term.” IDC’s full press release follows below. More →
Apple’s market-leading iOS tablet isn’t just the slate of choice for iPhone users according to a recent report. According to checks performed by Canaccord Genuity analysts T. Michael Walkley, Charles John and Matthew D. Ramsay, Android smartphone users are purchasing the iPad over Android alternatives like the Samsung Galaxy Tab 10.1 and Motorola XOOM. Canaccord notes that Samsung, Asus and Amazon likely pose the biggest threat to Apple’s strong global tablet position, but early iPad adoption among Android users could pose a problem for these competitors. The firm speculates that the high price points for tablet apps will likely lock these users into Apple’s iOS ecosystem, making it less likely that they will switch to an Android-based tablet in the near future. “Our smartphone and handset checks indicate iPads are selling better to Android smartphone users than the current Android tablets,” Canaccord’s report states. “As a result, we argue consumers purchasing a tablet are more likely to remain in that ecosystem given higher price points for tablet applications. With our checks indicating Android smartphone consumers are choosing the iPad versus Android tablets, we believe this is a powerful trend for Apple’s growing iOS base. Therefore, we anticipate Apple should maintain dominant share of the tablet market in C2011 and C2012.” Canaccord also notes that Microsoft’s Windows 8 tablets could do well when they become available next year, though the firm notes that Microsoft’s success could come mainly from the enterprise market. While Walkley and his team expect Apple’s share of the tablet market to slide significantly over the next two years — from an estimated 82% in 2010 to 56% in 2011 and 51% in 2012 — Canaccord sees Apple selling 35.8 million iPads this year and 55.1 million units in 2012, well ahead of its closest competitor Samsung, which is expected to sell 7.5 million tablets this year and 12 million tablets in 2012. Canaccord’s tablet unit and market share estimates follow below. More →
Needham & Company analyst Charlie Wolf on Tuesday raised his estimates for iPad shipments in the fiscal third quarter and full year. Wolf now believes increased demand will boost third-quarter shipments from 7.5 million to 9 million units, and he thinks Apple will ship a whopping 30 million iPad 2 tablets in fiscal 2011. “While competitors have rushed to launch competing tablets, they have made an imperceptible dent in the trajectory of iPad sales,” the analyst wrote in his note. “They have been unable to undercut the price of the iPad; and they’re fallen woefully short in matching its features, ease-of-use and the number of applications written for the device. Indeed, the only risk in our forecast is on the supply side, not the demand side.” Wolf also bumped his fiscal third-quarter Mac shipment projection from 3.75 million units to 4.25 million and 17 million units for the full year. Finally, he reduced his fiscal fourth-quarter iPhone estimates from 17.5 million units to 16 million, stating that Apple is likely to slow iPhone 4 shipments ahead of the iPhone 5’s launch in September. For the full year, Wolf sees iPhone shipments totaling 66 million units.
Sales of Apple’s iPad 2 tablet are set to explode in the third quarter according to Hong Kong-based research firm CLSA. Citing LCD sales data from DisplaySearch, the firm thinks Apple will unload 14.4 million iPad 2 tablets in the third quarter this year, well above the consensus of between 10 and 12 million units. But nothing is set in stone and Apple has widely missed iPad sales estimates in the past, though those misses were due largely to supply constraints. “Keep in mind that AAPL has missed iPad consensus in 2 out of the last 3 quarters, even when supply chain forecasts were higher,” the firm’s note warns. If CLSA’s research is accurate, we can also expect Apple to launch a 4G LTE-compatible iPad model ahead of the holidays this year.
Despite respectable sales in its first quarter of availability, RIM has reportedly slashed internal sales estimates for the BlackBerry PlayBook tablet. RIM announced during its earnings call last week that it had shipped 500,000 PlayBook tablets to retail partners during the fiscal first quarter of 2012. The figure didn’t quite match the 1 million mark that Samsung’s Galaxy Tab crossed after just two months, but it outsold Motorola’s XOOM tablet and beat estimates issued by several analysts. According to DigiTimes, however, RIM had very high hopes for its virgin tablet offering. The Waterloo, Ontario-based company had an internal goal of shipping between 2.4 and 2.5 million units during the second quarter. In light of lower than expected sales between the tablet’s launch in mid-April and the end of the fiscal first quarter, RIM has reportedly revised its second-quarter estimates down to 800,000 – 900,000 units. More →
Sanford Bernstein analyst Stacy Rasgon on Thursday issued a 49-page paper focused on the current and future markets for consumer tablets. Rasgon credits Apple with birthing the market, and he believes the iPad will continue to dominate indefinitely, noting that Apple managed to sell 19.5 million iPads in its first year of availability — twice the amount of netbooks and three times the number of iPhones sold in the same period of time. With its iPad business alone, “Apple has created a company the size of EMC in one year,” Rasgon writes. Like countless analysts before him, Rasgon sees the tablet market exploding over the next few years, with annual sales growing to 215 million units by the end of 2015. “We have never seen such a high purchasing intent for a new category in the past,” Rasgon notes, referencing a Bernstein survey indicating 20% of consumers plan to purchase a tablet in the next 12 months. He also says PC vendors don’t have to be overly nervous, since there will be minimal PC cannibalization resulting from the coming tablet boom. More →
Market research firm NPD Group this week revealed the findings of its recent report entitled, Apple iPad Owner Study II. Among the interesting findings contained within NPD’s research is the revelation that the iPad isn’t responsible for the current decline in the traditional consumer PC market — at least, not according to NPD and its respondents. Research firm IDC estimates that the PC market dipped by over 10% in the U.S. last quarter, and 3.2% globally. In reporting its estimates, IDC said that these declines were due to factors other than the rising popularity of the iPad and other “media tablets.” NPD Group’s new report jibes with that sentiment, as the firm claims that only 14% of early iPad adopters decided against purchasing a traditional PC as a result of their tablet purchases. “The explosion of computer sales when Windows 7 launched, as well as the huge increase in netbook sales at that time, are much more to blame for weak consumer PC sales growth than the iPad,” said Stephen Baker, VP of industry analysis at NPD, in a statement. “Overall it appears that the vast majority of iPad purchases to-date have been incremental to the consumer technology industry.” Hit the jump for the full press release. More →
In a recent interview with Finnish news outlet YLE, Nokia’s CEO Stephen Elop discussed the company’s strategy for approaching the already crowded tablet market. “There are now over 200 different tablets on the marketplace, only one of them is doing really well,” Elop said. “And, my challenge to the team is I don’t want to be the 201st tablet on the market that you can’t tell from all of the others. We have to take a uniquely Nokia prospective.” Elop added that Nokia could work with Microsoft and take advantage of its software for a Windows-based tablet, but also said that the firm could “do things with some of the other software assets that we have.” Early reports have suggested that Nokia may exclude Microsoft from its tablet plans altogether, and that it may still launch a MeeGo powered device. More →
Market research firm ABI Research on Wednesday released sales data covering the global consumer tablet market in 2010. According to the firm, Apple’s iPad accounted for 85% of the media tablets sold in 2010, and Samsung’s Galaxy Tab was the second most popular tablet model with an 8% share. Finally, Archos’ tablet range occupied the No. 3 spot with roughly 2% of the global market. The rest of the companies that entered the space last year combined to make up 5% of the global market according to ABI’s numbers. While this data is in line with earlier findings reported by other firms, ABI holds an opposing position with regard to the tablet market’s impact on netbook computers and eReaders. “Device categories including netbooks and mobile broadband-enabled eBook Readers showed gains in year-over-year shipment numbers in 2010,” said ABI senior practice director Jeff Orr in a statement. “The hype that media tablets were displacing portable computers and dedicated CE device purchases simply didn’t become a reality.” While the emerging tablet market might not have had a significant impact on global PC sales in 2010, the market does appear to be sliding so far in 2011 according to recent first-quarter estimates from IDC. Hit the break for ABI’s full press release. More →
Apple’s iPad will continue to dominate the “media tablet” market for years to come, research firm Gartner said on Monday. While Google’s Android platform is expected to gain market share rapidly as iOS’ share declines over the next five years, Gartner still sees iOS as owning the largest share in the tablet market five years from now. According to the firm’s latest figures, Apple’s iPad tablets accounted for 83.9% of the market in 2010 while Android tablets — namely Samsung’s Galaxy Tab — held a 14.2% share. In 2011, Gartner expects the iPad’s market share to slip to 68.7% while Android’s share climbs to 19.9%, and then in 2015, Android will rise to account for 38.6% of the market. At that time, Gartner expects Apple’s iPad to account for 47.1% of the 294 million tablets sold, meaning Gartner expects Apple so sell nearly 140 million iPads in 2015. A few other items of note according to the firm’s forecast: RIM’s QNX-based tablets will make up 10% of media tablets sold in 2015, HP’s webOS will only have a 3% market share in 2015, and the figures in this report do not include sales of Windows-based tablets as they do not fit Gartner’s criteria for “media tablets,” which run a lightweight OS. Hit the break for Gartner’s full press release. More →
Apple’s suppliers have shipped between 2.4 million and 2.6 million iPad 2 tablets to date, a new report claims. Citing sources at touch panel suppliers in Taiwan, industry watcher DigiTimes states that shipments of Apple’s iPad 2 have outpaced the original iPad. Apple is reportedly expected to take delivery of between 4 million and 4.3 million iPad 2 units each month between April and June, totaling over 12 million units for the second quarter. The iPad 2 has seen tremendous demand in the U.S. and globally, having sold out in nearly every retail location that made the tablet available. Lines continue to form as new inventory arrives at retail locations abroad, and strong sales have kept stock low at U.S. retailers as well. Shipping estimates for online orders placed on Apple’s website improved to 2-3 weeks last month but that is where they have remained ever since, suggesting supply still hasn’t caught up with demand. Apple’s iPad 2 launched on March 11th in the U.S., and we said in our review that it pushed Apple’s already huge lead in the tablet space even further. More →
Android 3.0 — or “Honeycomb,” as Google lovingly calls it — is not fit for mass consumption. This according to analyst Trip Chowdhry of Global Equities Research, who calls Google’s tablet-friendly operating system “by the geeks, for the geeks, and of the geeks,” and says it has little chance of mass adoption. In a note to investors on Wednesday, Chowdhry lambasted Honeycomb and said it would fail. In a bizarre twist, however, the analyst also said the failure wouldn’t matter because “Honeycomb is insignificant to Google revenues.” As an ocean of consumer electronics OEMs bet the bank on tablets and Honeycomb (along with future Android builds that will be based on Honeycomb) quickly becomes the platform of choice, we’re pretty sure Google stands to make a buck or two off of the Google services all these potential users will have tossed on their laps. But Chowdry thinks Google should stick to the Web, where consumers won’t complain about buggy products because they’re free. When an $800 Motorola XOOM crashes repeatedly, however, “the consumer is unforgiving.” More →
If you’re tired of hearing about tablets, we have some bad news for you… they’re not going away any time soon. While repeated failed attempts will undoubtedly trim the number of entrants in the tablet market over the coming months and years, the market itself is poised to explode. JP Morgan said in a note on Monday that it estimates the global tablet market to reach $35 billion next year. More specifically, the firm revised its 2011 tablet revenue forecast from $24.9 billion up to $26.1 billion on sales of 47.9 million units, and its 2012 estimate has been raised to $35.2 billion on sales of 79.6 million units from $34.1 billion. JP Morgan also noted that the tablet market will likely have a negative impact on sales of laptop computers. “We expect tablets to have an increasingly negative impact on PC shipments,” JP Morgan analyst Mark Moskowitz wrote. “More than 35 percent of tablets sold in 2012 will be cannibalistic, particularly as relates to netbooks and notebooks.” More →