IDC: Worldwide Tablet Market Declines 5.4% in Q3 2017

IDC: Worldwide Tablet Market Declines 5.4% in Q3 2017

Worldwide tablet sales fell 5 percent annually to 44.6 million in the third quarter but inched up 2% quarter on quarter from 43.7 million in the April to June period, according to the latest data from Strategy Analytics.

Interestingly enough, four of these top five tablet manufacturers reported Q3 growth in both sales and share, while Samsung dipped half a million units, nonetheless retaining its position behind leader Apple. Huawei is also expected to widen its lead over Lenovo in 2018 as the company continues its aggressive expansion into the tablet market with 50% shipment increase targeted for next year. Apple shipped 10.3 million tablets, accounting for 25.8%. 40 million units were shipped during the three months that ended on the last day of September. This growth, IDC claims, is thanks to the firm's recent-ish launch of a cheaper iPad, and the release of iOS 11 which "has helped make iPads a more serious PC competitor than ever before".

IDC says while Samsung offers one of the broadest ranges of detachable tablets, detachables acocunt for less than 10% of its shipments in the quarter.

According to an IDC survey, owners of detachables and convertibles were more prone to recommend a convertible to another buyer than a detachable. However, 42.3 million tablets were shipped in the third quarter of 2016.

Samsung was down 7.9%, with shipments totalling 6.0 million and share dropping from 15.4% to 15.0%. The upcoming holiday season “may prove to be a critical crossroad for the category”, that includes both slate tablets and detachable devices.

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Furthermore, Amazon's own branded smartphones (i.e. the Fire Phone series) have made very limited progress on the market, so the company has to raise the market penetration of its tablets to satisfy its members' demand for resources in its ecosystems.

Jitesh Ubrani, IDC Worldwide Quarterly Mobile Device Trackers senior research analyst, says "There's a penchant for low-priced slates and this holds true even for premium vendors like Apple". Amazon's strategy is offering tablets with very little profit margins in order to bring customers into its retail ecosystem.

Huawei and Lenovo tied for fourth place with 3 million devices shipped, but Huawei had the strongest growth: 18.8% vs. 8.9%.

"However, many of these low-priced slates are simply long-awaited replacements for consumers as first-time buyers are becoming harder to find and the overall installed base for these devices delcines further in the coming years".

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