THE TABLET MARKET is continuing to slump and cheap devices are to blame, according to analyst outfit IDC.
The analyst outfit (which includes devices that have detachable keyboards, like the iPad Pro and Surface Pro, as tablets) has revealed that 40 million tablets were shipped in the three months ending 30 September, down from 42.3 million in the third-quarter of 2016.
The firm has blamed this slump on growing demand for smartphones, the lengthening replacement cycle of tablets and the surprise increase in sales of traditional PCs.
However, IDC's figures show that cheap tablets are also a contributing factor to this overall decline, with sales of devices from "other" vendors slumping 26.3 per cent during the quarter to 13.3 million.
"There's a penchant for low-cost slates and this holds true even for premium vendors like Apple," said Jitesh Ubrani, senior research analyst with IDC's Worldwide Quarterly Mobile Device Trackers.
"However, many of these low-cost slates are simply long-awaited replacements for consumers as first-time buyers are becoming harder to find and the overall installed base for these devices declines further in the coming years."
It's a different story from the big-name manufacturers, bar Microsoft which failed to make it into IDC's top 5 list despite recently reporting a 12 per cent increase in Surface sales.
Apple topped the list with 10.3 million iPads flogged during Q3, an 11.4 per cent year-on-year increase that bagged the firm 25.8 per cent of the global tablet market. This growth, IDC claims, is thanks to the firm's recent-ish launch of a cheaper iPad, and the release of iOS 11 which "has helped make iPads a more serious PC competitor than ever before."
Samsung ranked second with a 15 per cent share of the market, despite seeing a 7.9 per cent slump in sales to six million which the analyst outfit credits to the firm's non-competitively priced devices.
Third place goes to Amazon, which saw sales increase a whopping 38.7 per cent to 4.4 million in Q3, followed by Huawei and Lenovo in the third and fourth spots. µ
A surprisingly busy week in a quiet month
Measures just 15.75mm at its thickest point
Firm expects GPU sales to start drying up