Published in News

Tablet sales in Asia slow down

by on16 August 2013

China disappoints 

A few weeks ago analysts predicted a significant slowdown in tablet sales this quarter. The rationale was that consumers would put off their upgrades until Apple launches new iPads, but now it appears that sales of Android tablets may be about to slow down.

According to Analysys Internetional, growth of tablet sales in China is slowing down. China gobbled up just 3.57 million tablets last quarter, up 5.2 percent over the first quarter. Apple sales dropped and it lost market share to Android. Meanwhile Chinese tablets gained share, but demand remains soft.

This might raise quite a few eyebrows. Chinese white-box tablet makers have been doing exceptionally well over the past few quarters. Most of them focus on inexpensive 7- to 8-inch Android tablets and they managed to gain a lot of market share this year, while big brands struggled to gain traction with their Android tablets.

Now it appears that the west is waiting for new iPads, while emerging markets like China are becoming saturated with cheap Android tablets. Furthermore phablets are quite popular in Asia, particularly in China, and cheap, oversized phablets may be cannibalizing 7-inch tablets.

On the whole, Android tablets are not doing very well. While unit sales are steadily going up, ASPs and margins seem to be going down. Most consumers are choosing cheap Android tablets, very few go for high-end models. The high-end is still Apple’s turf and this won't change anytime soon.

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