Tablet Wars Heat Up - Apple, Samsung, Microsoft Lead Charges
In search of higher margins and conquest sales from the PC market, Tablet vendors 2-in-1 and Pro Slate devices have garnered higher revenue and stabilized average selling prices (ASPs), according to the new "Global Tablet Vendor & OS, Unit & Value Market Share by Region: Q1 2016" report from Strategy Analytics' Tablet & Touchscreen Strategies (TTS) service. Microsoft and Apple combined to sell over a million of their Pro Slates last quarter, and most mobile-first/smartphone vendors now have Pro Slates (with optional keyboard) or 2-in-1 Tablets (with detachable keyboard standard) to sate growing demand for these converged computing devices.
White Box vendors (combined) shipped 13.3 million tablets valued at nearly $750 million total in Q1 2016; by comparison, Microsoft's 1.1 million tablet shipments fetched $950 million due to higher quality products commanding much higher prices.
Android Tablets represented 64% of tablet shipments but earned only a 41% share of revenue during Q1 2016, reflecting lower ASPs than their Windows and iOS counterparts. Apple alone took 39% of tablet revenues in Q1 2016, nearly double its shipment unit market share of 22%.
Peter King, Service Director, Tablet & Touchscreen Strategies service said, "Microsoft deserves credit for popularizing the Pro Slate category, typified by a premium tablet with PC-grade processing power, with an optional keyboard to further add to revenues and profit. Combined with the success of Windows 10, many more OEM partners are launching Surface clones at lower price points to get a share of this lucrative, growing segment. Though it didn't gain first mover status, Apple now has two tiers of Pro Slates to join in the cannibalization of the PC and Tablet markets, to the betterment of iPad ASPs (average selling prices)."
Eric Smith, Senior Analyst, Tablet & Touchscreen Strategies service added, "As a device, the tablet is going through a period of recalibration as productivity becomes more important, enterprises purchase more touchscreen and mobile first devices for a new generation of workers, and consumers begin paring down ownership of multiple computing devices. We expect shipments to continue their slow decline over the next couple of years during which the usefulness, quality, and ASPs (average selling prices) of tablets grow."