Apple’s once-dominant tablet market share has collapsed

iOS Android Tablet Market Share
iOS Android Tablet Market Share

If it seems like only a year ago that Apple’s iPad was the only tablet generating serious sales around the world, that’s because it was. IDC’s latest research shows that times have changed, however, and Apple’s iOS is now far behind Android in the race to be the world’s most-used tablet operating system.

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According to IDC, Apple shipped 14.6 million iPads in the second quarter of 2013, a 14% drop from the 17 million tablets it shipped in Q2 2013. Over that same time, Android tablet shipments surged from 10.7 million in Q2 2012 to 28.2 million in Q2 2013, an increase of just under 163%. These reverse trajectories caused iOS and Android’s market shares to essentially flip over the past year: While Apple held a 60.3% market share and Android held a 38% market share in Q2 2012, Android now holds a 62.6% market share and Apple holds a 32.5% market share.

In other news, IDC has found that Windows-based tablets accounted for 4.5% of all tablets shipped in Q2 2013, a big increase from the 1% share that Windows tablets held in Q2 2012. However, Microsoft can’t be pleased to see that Windows RT tablets only accounted for 0.5% of all tablets shipped on the quarter and just barely beat out BlackBerry’s PlayBook, which accounted for 0.3% of all tablets shipped.

IDC’s press release follows below.

Tablet Shipments Slow in the Second Quarter As Vendors Look To Capitalize on a Strong Second Half of 2013, According to IDC

SAN MATEO, Calif., August 5, 2013 – As expected, worldwide tablet shipment growth slowed in the second quarter of 2013 (2Q13), according to preliminary data from the International Data Corporation (IDC) Worldwide Quarterly Tablet Tracker. Worldwide tablet shipments finally experienced a sequential decline as total volumes fell -9.7% from 1Q13. However, the 45.1 million units shipped in the second quarter was up 59.6% from the same quarter in 2012, when tablet vendors shipped 28.3 million devices.

Lacking a new product launch in March to help spur shipments, Apple’s iPad saw a lower-than-predicted shipment total of 14.6 million units for the quarter, down from 19.5 million in 1Q13. In years past, Apple has launched a new tablet heading into the second quarter, which resulted in strong quarter-over-quarter growth. Now, Apple is expected to launch new tablet products in the second half of the year, a move that better positions it to compete during the holiday season. Meanwhile, the other two vendors in the top 3 also saw a decline in their unit shipments during the quarter. Second-place Samsung shipped 8.1 million units, down from 8.6 million in the first quarter of 2013, although up significantly from the 2.1 million units shipped in 2Q12. And third-place ASUS shipped a total of 2.0 million units in 2Q13, down from 2.6 million in 1Q13.

“A new iPad launch always piques consumer interest in the tablet category and traditionally that has helped both Apple and its competitors,” said Tom Mainelli, Research Director, Tablets at IDC. “With no new iPads, the market slowed for many vendors, and that’s likely to continue into the third quarter. However, by the fourth quarter we expect new products from Apple, Amazon, and others to drive impressive growth in the market.”

Not all vendors experienced a slowdown during the quarter. PC stalwarts Lenovo and Acer both re-entered the top five this quarter. Lenovo continued to make headway into the world of mobility and for the first time had shipments surpass the million unit mark in a quarter, shipping a total of 1.5 million devices. This was up 313.9% from a year ago and enough to capture 3.3% market share. Rounding out the top 5 was Acer, which shipped 1.4 million tablets in 2Q13 for 247.9% year-over-year growth and an increase of 35.4% over the first quarter of 2013.

“The tablet market is still evolving and vendors can rise and fall quickly as a result,” said Ryan Reith, Program Manager for IDC’s Mobility Tracker programs. “Apple aside, the remaining vendors are still very much figuring out which platform strategy will be successful over the long run. To date, Android has been far more successful than the Windows 8 platform. However, Microsoft-fueled products are starting to make notable progress into the market.”

Top Five Tablet Vendors, Shipments, and Market Share, Second Quarter 2013 (Shipments in millions)

Source: IDC Worldwide Tablet Tracker, August 5, 2013.

Top Tablet Operating Systems, Shipments, and Market Share, Second Quarter 2013 (Shipments in Millions)

Source: IDC Worldwide Tablet Tracker, August 5, 2013

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