IDC’s latest report on the tablet market doesn’t look so good in respect to growth. In February, IDC reported a 3.2% drop in tablet shipments which marked the first ever year-on-year decline, and in their latest outlook, the projections of market growth are gloomy as the research company scaled back its earlier projections. IDC’s new forecast has tablet shipments reaching 234million in 2015. This represents only a slight increase of 2.1% when comparing to 2014.
IDC has provided us with a chart representing their growth forecast which looks to gain a slight bump in 2016 and continue declining until 2019 to almost minimal growth.
One of the interesting takeaways in their latest report is how quickly Apple has begun to lose share and not just due to the market growing at a faster rate than Apple can keep up with, but due to the decline in iPad shipments overall, calling them the “weakest link”.
Android on the other hand increased overall shipment but is expected to have a very slight increase year-over-year from 154.7 million in 2014 to 158.1 million in 2015. It’s also worth noting that IDC expects Android tablets to experience a market share drop to 62.9% in 2019.
It’s not all gloomy for the newest member in the tablet market space, the Windows tablets, which are expected to gain significant share by 2019. Although Windows had a market share of 5.1% in 2014, climbing to 14.1 in the next few years is a large jump, and IDC is convinced that Windows 10 will play a big role in this movement.
Both IDC and Canalys released their respective tablet shipment numbers representing the fourth quarter of 2014 and they show the first ever year-over-year decline since the modern tablet era began in 2010.
Four out of the top 5 vendors saw a decline in fourth quarter shipments. It’s also worth noting that IDC includes 2-in-1 devices such as the Surface Pro 3 in their tablet shipment numbers and Canalys does not.
IDC counts 76.1 million tablets and 2-in-1 devices shipped for the quarter which represents a 3.2% decline compared to the same time a year earlier.
Canalys on the other hand reports a 12% year-over-year drop with a 67 million unit figure. However, both IDC and Canalys report Apple retaining their number one position but declining 18% to 21.4 million tablets compared to 26 million in Q4 of 2014, while Samsung declined a massive 24% with 11 million units shipped compared to 13.5 million in Q4 of 2013.
Interestingly, Canalys who counts only tablets with mobile OS’s and excludes 2-in-1 devices like the Surface Pro 3 and Windows based PC’s from other vendors, has Microsoft pegged at 2 million tablets shipped, which means that these are Windows RT based tablets. They also report that there were in excess of 6 million Windows tablets shipped for the quarter which puts Windows tablets at 9% share.
IDC says that “Microsoft’s new OS, a general shift towards larger screen form factor and productivity focused solutions, and technology innovations such as gesture interface that could be introduced in tablets will help the market maintain positive growth in 2015.”
Canalys expects growth in 2015 to come from tablets with screen sizes larger than 8″ as vendors look to improve margins and micro-brand players exit the market. Some of this change will be driven by growth of the Windows platform.
Source: IDC & Canalys