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Wednesday, 07 November 2012 10:44

Apple losing market share in tablets

Written by Nick Farrell



Worm turns


Apple's tablet market share is starting to fall. According to figures from IDC, the company's supreme reign of the tablet market is now over as the iPad faced more competition from Android devices such as Samsung's Galaxy tablets and Google's Nexus 7. While Apple is still the market leader by a long way, its grip over the tablet market appears to be failing.

Ryan Reith, a program manager for mobile devices at IDC told Associated Press competitors are turning up the pressure. In July-September, Apple shipped 14 million devices, up 26 per cent from 11 million a year ago. But its all important market share fell from 60 per cent in the third quarter of 2011 as the overall tablet market grew by 50 per cent to nearly 28 million. Its nearest rival, Samsung saw its market share grew to 18 per cent, from about seven per cent, as it more than quadrupled the number of tablets shipped to 5.1 million.

The quarter saw the release of the Galaxy Note 10.1, a device built for use with a stylus. Amazon.com was in third with its Kindle Fire, which had a nine per cent market share. Amazon's feat was remarkable because it managed a 9 per cent worldwide share even though the Fire was available only in the US during the third quarter. The number four tablet maker AsusTek, which makes the Nexus 7 for Google, saw its shipments more than triple to 2.4 million. It had a share of 8.6 per cent, up from 3.8 per cent.

Things are expected to get worse for Apple this month when Amazon and Google will start shipping larger versions of its tablets this month. The Kindle Fire and Nexus 7 both have had screens measuring 7 inches diagonally. Google's Nexus 10 will be 10.1 inches, while Amazon's will be 8.9 inches.

The wild card of Microsoft entering the market will come into play. Tablets and other devices running Microsoft Windows 8 and Windows RT started going on sale last month. It is not clear if this will harm Apple or the new Android tablets.

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