One analyst believes that Android tablets will overtake Apple’s iPad range as the dominant tablet platform as soon as 2013.
Analyst Sameer Singh of Finvista Advisors states in a recent Tech-Thoughts blog post that Android tablets will become the leading tablet format by mid-2013.
At present, the iPad is in a strong position, with sales of 100 million and 91 per cent of tablet web traffic (according to Apple’s figures, at least). However, Android tablet growth is much stronger than iPad growth.
After a slightly shaky 2011, this year has been particularly strong for Android tablets, with sales accelerating from Q1 to Q3. Meanwhile iPad shipments have actually dropped off in Q3.
In fact, Singh reveals that Android shipments have outstripped iPad shipments in “six out of the last eight quarters.”
Singh reckons that Android tablet manufacturers have learned from the example of the Amazon Kindle Fire “that diversified price points would help expand the market and take share from the iPad.” In other words, customers like having a cheap alternative to the iPad – hence the £320 Google Nexus 10 (pictured).
Singh also points out that the growth pattern for tablets is proving to be very similar to the growth pattern of smartphones. He says this “suggests that tablets are finally being adopted by mainstream users,” but it also suggests that Android tablets will likely follow in the footsteps of Android smartphones and become the number one platform.
How about the launch of the iPad mini, which by all accounts have been a big success? Singh doesn’t expect that iPad mini sales will eat into Android tablet sales. He points to the fact that Amazon Kindle Fire HD (yes, it runs on Android) sales spiked when the iPad mini launched, whilst the Nexus 7 continues to perform well.