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© mircea bezergheanu dreamstime.com Analysis | October 02, 2013

Android ecosystem challenges Apple in the tablet race

A shift in leadership is now upon the tablet mobile computing market. At the year’s mid-point, ABI Research identified a trio of events signaling Apple’s iPad family of products has passed the baton to the Android ecosystem.
During the second quarter of 2013, the number of Android-powered tablets surpassed iOS-based slates for the first time, tablet-related hardware revenues reached parity, and perhaps most important, the average selling price (ASP) of iPad is rapidly approaching the market average.

Overall shipments in the quarter dropped 17% sequentially while growing 23% year-over-year for the same quarterly period. “Smaller 7-inch class tablets are finally the majority of shipments,” says senior practice director Jeff Orr. “The 7.9-inch iPad mini represented about 60% of total iPad shipments and 49% of iPad-related device revenues in the quarter.”

Tablet shipments in the second quarter of 2013 achieved revenues of USD 12.7 billion. For the first time, iPad represented only 50% of worldwide end-user revenues. Apple split the market with all other branded vendors at USD 6.3 billion in the quarter.

Similarly, the change in the vendor landscape can be seen through the ASP of tablets. In the past year, iPad ASPs dropped 17% while the rest of market increased 17%. The iPad drop is primarily attributed to the introduction and volume shift to the smaller iPad mini. Apple still remains top of the pack in tablets, though its lineup has been matched and bested by competitors.

“Twelve months is a long time for the peak lifecycle of a contemporary tablet. To remain a leader, Apple must continue to innovate and address real-world market needs,” adds Orr.

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