Maybe the death of the tablet

[Well, they said the same thing about the PC.]

In case you never noticed, I have never been a fan of these “research” firms who speculate about the various trends. Most seem to look at something and say “Oh it increased by 10% this year. OK next year it will be 20% and 30% the following year.” Generally with little to back up their “research” [in my opinion]. Maybe it’s because of my math background, who knows.

If you haven’t noticed, things are beginning to reverse what was happening the last few years. In the greater PC market [laptops, desktops, tablets, etc.], up until recently, the desktop and laptop markets were in a bit of a decline while tablet sales were taking off.

Let’s go back to August of 2013. Forrester research announce [or predicted] that tablets will become a mainstay of households in developed markets by 2017, with 60% of online consumers in North America and 42% in European owning one by 2017. Or by percentage, roughly a 25.6% increase compounded annually to maybe 381 million by 2017.

A few months prior, IDC said that the increase would be even larger – at 410 million by 2017.

Now who was it that said that the “PC” [as in laptops and maybe desktops] is dead?

The latest sales figures have tablets dropping 16% since September and grew just 7% all year according to that same “research” company IDC. Tablets grew 53% last year.

7” tablets declined 40% since September. Not surprising. Screen is too small for most.

iPad sales have shrunk three straight quarters and the sales in the last quarter was the smallest in two years. [On the other hand, Apple’s iPads are released in the fall every year. So we’d expect a decline as the new models are about to be released.] Apple though they’d get a boost with the two new models iPad Mini 3 and iPad Air 2 – but that didn’t happen.

Interesting to note that of all things, the Microsoft Surface tablets are doing well in the last three months with a 11% increase – but they could really only go up.

Regarding these so-called “research” companies, let me put it in another way: In 2007, came the netbook. Small, low cost but not too fast. Call them the precursor to the tablet. According to ABI Research, in 2013, 139 million would be sold. In fact very few were as the netbook lines by Asus, Acer and others died. In 2013, they were dumping their leftover inventory. ABI pulled their research from their web site in 2011 as they probably were too embarrassed to keep it. ABI claimed that sales would double by 2013.

What killed the netbook? Tablets, economy, other light weight laptops with more power, profits for the manufacturer.

What is killing the tablet? Good question. Maybe the fact that some found out that tablets can’t do everything. Maybe everyone who bought one don’t need another one.



About ebraiter
computer guy

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