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Apple’s basic iPad is by far the world’s most popular tablet

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Demand for tablets exploded during the pandemic as millions of people switched to working from home and that continued throughout the first quarter of 2021, as the latest Counterpoint Research report reveals.

Apple dominated thanks to the budget iPad

Global tablet shipments grew 53% year-on-year between January and March 2021 with established brands like Apple, Samsung and Lenovo benefitting the most from the increased demand.Apple accounted for an incredible 37% of tablet shipments during the three-month period, up from a market share of 30% a year earlier. The iPad experienced improved performance in all major regions.

Moreover, in Japan the iPad reached an all-time high. The news follows news earlier this year that Apple’s iPhone also recently reached an all-time high in the Japanese market following the success of the iPhone 12.

The basic iPad was the most popular model worldwide, which is unsurprising when you consider its low price and the fact that it’s deemed one of the best tablets to buy. Counterpoint Research says the 8th-gen iPad accounted for 56% of overall iPad shipments in the first quarter.

The relatively new iPad Air (2020) was the second-most popular model with a share of 19%. Today’s report says the tablet was a “huge hit with consumers looking for cost-effectiveness as well as high specifications.”

The iPad Pro lineup followed in third place by accounting for 18% of sales. Apple’s most expensive tablets are expected to increase their share to 25% by the second half of 2021 as supply ramps up. The remaining 7% of iPad shipments were split between the iPad mini, which is due for an update later this year, and older models.

Huawei collapsed; Samsung and Lenovo experienced strong growth

Following Apple in second and third place respectively were Samsung and Lenovo. The former accounted for 20% of shipments, up from 16% a year earlier, and the latter boosted its market share to 9% from 5%.Amazon also experienced an improvement, with its share jumping from 8% to 9%, though the same can’t be said about Huawei. Mimicking its performance in the smartphone market, Huawei’s tablet share dropped from 11% to 5% at the start of 2021.

Counterpoint Research didn’t go into detail about the performance of these brands, but Huawei’s collapse is likely related to its inability to ship devices with Google apps and supply chain issues.

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