The Tech Herald

iPad losing grip on the tablet market

by Steven Mostyn - Feb 17 2012, 15:15

Image: kodomut/Flickr.

Yesterday we turned your attention towards a Gartner report that revealed Apple is still top dog in the global smartphone market. However, how is the Cupertino giant performing in the increasingly popular tablet sector?

Well, while the iconic iPad is indeed leading the tablet pack—thanks to a healthy 62 percent share for the year—the competition is rapidly eating into Apple’s dominance, which stood at 87 percent in 2010.

And the cause, according to research specialist IHS Inc., is Amazon’s austerity-friendly Kindle Fire tablet, which, at $199 USD, retails for less than half of the iPad and has risen from nothing to take a 14 percent market share since launching on November 15 of 2011.

Adding yet more weight to Amazon’s charge—despite Apple’s recent dismissal of the Kindle Fire as “a limited function device”—the success of its debut tablet has also seen the online retailer knocking Samsung out of second place on the market chart.

IHS also points to the popularity of Apple’s own feature-rich iPhone 4S smartphone as another reason why Cook & Co. have lost some grip in the tablet sector.

In terms of quarterly spread, Apple shipped 15.4 million iPads in Q4, while Amazon and Samsung shipped 3.89 million units and 2.14 million units respectively. A total of 27.1 million tablets were shipped throughout 2011’s final quarter, which equates to a 55 percent rise.

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