It’s not all doom and gloom for devices other than smartphones. Canalys predicts that tablets will split the computer market with notebooks and desktops in 2014, taking a 50% share of next year’s shipments. Tablets had already caught up to within half a million units of worldwide notebook shipments in Q3 2013, but as traditional PC sales continue to decline, tablets are going to pick up the slack.
The battle for the tablet market, similar to the battle over smartphones, is primarily being waged by Apple and Samsung. Both are expected to see huge gains throughout the holiday season, although Canalys believes that other vendors will challenge the giants as tablets continue to become the dominant device.
Of the 285 million tablets expected to ship in 2014, 65% will be Android-based. Samsung by itself might fail to top Apple in the tablet market this year, but Android will control a vast majority of the market in the coming years, without any signs of slowing. All Samsung has to do to capitalize on this growth is beat out the host of other vendors with more affordable Android tablets.
There is some movement in Microsoft’s camp as well — with the acquisition of Nokia’s handset division, Microsoft will have a broader lineup than ever before. Once Microsoft finally consolidates its operating systems, the company’s tablets could threaten to take a chunk out of the market.