Global tablet shipments more than doubled in the first quarter and while
Apple remained the top seller, Asian manufacturers making low-end
gadgets accounted for a major chunk of the growth, according to a
Tablet shipments reached 49.2 million units in the
January-to-March period, 142.4 percent more than in the same quarter in
2012, market research firm IDC said on Wednesday. Apple's iPads
accounted for 19.5 million units, an increase of 65.3 percent.
Electronics, Asus, Amazon Inc and Microsoft all grew their tablet
shipments and eked out market share gains against Apple.
biggest jump in market share came from other Asian manufacturers
churning out inexpensive devices sold globally to customers including
Staples, Toys R Us, Hewlett-Packard and Toshiba, IDC analyst Ryan Reith
"There's no question the growth is at the low end of
the market," Reith said. "It's 80 to 100 vendors distributing no-name
brands across the world - and those are just the ones we can get a sense
Those devices are almost all based on Google's Android
platform, have 7-inch displays and are powered by no-frills processors
from Asian chipmakers like Rockchip and Allwinner Technology, Reith
said, adding they often wholesale for less than $60 each.
of tablets outside the top five vendors surged to 15.5 million units in
the first quarter and accounted for nearly a third of the market, up
from a quarter of the market a year ago, according to the report.
growth helped push the market share of tablets running Android higher
than Apple's iOS platform for the first time. Android tablets accounted
for 56.5 percent of shipments in the March quarter, compared to 39.6
percent for iPads. Tablets running Microsoft's new Windows and Windows
RT platforms accounted for 3.7 percent of total shipments.