It is no secret that Apple has been sort of struggling when it comes mobile device sales in the last few quarters. For instance, the once ultra-dominant iPhone continues to register declining sales, even during the most recent quarter of this year. The same goes for Apple’s iPad tablets in the past several months, except that in Q3 2016, iPad sales appear to have bounced back -- well at least in terms of market share.
As estimated by research firm Strategy Analytics, the iPad’s worldwide market share has improved slightly from 19.1 percent from the third quarter of last year, to 19.9 percent during the third quarter of this year. But hold your horses -- it is primarily because the entire tablet market across the globe is continuing to ail, declining 10 percent in Q3 2016.
Many industry watchers believe that quite a number of manufacturers of tablet devices continues to suffer decreases in growth year to year. In Apple’s case, even though it managed to post a slightly better market share for the third quarter of this year, it does not mean that it was immune to the overall decline in sales among tablet makers. Still, Apple registered a smaller drop in sales than other brands out there, except maybe for Amazon, whose Fire tablet (priced at $49) boasted significantly improved shipment numbers (more than double growth).
But as mentioned earlier, Apple is doing relatively better compared to its rivals when it comes to tablets. As pointed out by Strategy Analytics, the company’s iPad Pro lineup of tablet devices should contribute immensely in allowing Apple to recover. It bears noting that before the iPad Pro, Apple has never offered a tablet device that also doubles as a laptop.
Also, it does suggest somewhat that Apple may be deliberately trying to do some counter programming. Android tablets nowadays seem to be going for the 2 in 1 approach in making tablets, as evidenced by Samsung releasing its TabPro S and Lenovo with its Yoga series. Some analysts have observed thats shipments of Windows hybrid and tablets have improved 25 percent year over during Q3 2016.
But the latest report from Strategy Analytics also suggest that the tablet market may be at its most mature, or close to hitting that level. There will still be a market for basic mobile tablets because quite frankly, there will always be people who prefer viewing movies or reading books through a tablet’s display screen.
However, it should be noted that high end tablets are starting to get some traction. The fact of the matter is -- people want all of their machines to be mobile nowadays, including their personal computers. To be clear about, tablets are nowhere near replacing PCs and laptops yet, but there has been some significant progress.
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