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iPad continues to drive growth of media tablet shipments

According to the International Data Corporation (IDC) Worldwide Quarterly Media Tablet and e-Reader Tracker, media tablet shipments have increased worldwide by almost 90 per cent on a sequential basis, and year over year by about 300 per cent in the second calendar quarter of 2011 to 13.6 million units. Because of the strong performance that leads to a positive outlook for the gadget for the second half of the year, IDC made a forecast of 62.5 million units being shipped all over the world. This projection is definitely higher than the previous forecast of 53.5 million units.

The shipments of media tablets in the second quarter increased because of the continued robust demand for the iPad 2. Apple’s iPad 2 shipments reached 9.3 million units which represents 68.3 per cent of the worldwide market, a 2.6 per cent increase from 65.7 per cent of the previous quarter. Apple’s continued competitiveness and RIM’s introduction of their very own media tablet brought chagrin to the Android-based media tablets, whose shares slipped down from 34.0 per cent to 26.8 per cent. Competition’s getting real tough nowadays, isn’t it?

IDC is expecting that Android will yield additional market share in the third quarter of 2011 before it begins growing its share once again in the fourth quarter. IDC also expects continued demand for Apple iPads and Touchpads pegged at $99. Before the end of the year, TouchPad shipment is seen to be close to around a million units. WebOS’s worldwide market share will reach 7.4 per cent in the third quarter of 2011.

According to Mobile Connected Devices research director Tom Mainelli, the strong demand for Apple products has driven the growth of media tablet shipments in the second quarter. He added that shipments will continue to increase in the latter half of the year because more Android manufacturers will introduce more price-competitive products into the market while Apple strives to retain its reign.

Jennifer Song, a research analyst at the Worldwide Trackers expounded that Apple’s iOS share will maintain its lead by more than 40 per cent over Google’s Android for the rest of this year, but its share will fall closer to 50 per cent by the end of the forecast period due to the new tablets which will be rolled out by manufacturers.

The second quarter experienced a seasonal downfall for the e-Readers. Amazon led the market with its 51.7 per cent share; Barnes and Noble came in at second with 21.2 per cent. IDC expects growth in e-Reader shipments through the holiday season. Mainelli said that we must anticipate sellers to bring down the prices of their current generation black-and-white eReaders by the holidays in order to entice more potential customers. Amazon’s rumored color LCD-based device is also expected to be shipped within this year.

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