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iPad Holds 95% of Tablet Market
Dell will get into tablets in a big way in 2011

Anyone with eyes can see that the Apple iPad is dominating the tablet market today. This is in large part due to the fact that as of now there are still very few competitors on the market. That lack of competition is changing quickly though with tablets running Windows and Android due on the market soon.

Research firm Strategy Analytics reports that for the quarter spanning July through September the Apple iPad dominated the market with 95% of the tablet market. The market for tablets over the quarter swelled to 4.4 million units. The previous quarter was good for 3.5 million tablets according to the research firm.

Analyst Neil Mawston said, "The tablet wars are up and running. Apple has quickly leveraged its famous brand, an extensive retail presence and user-friendly design to develop the tablet segment into a multi-billion-dollar global business."

There are other tablets coming to the market that will run Android, Windows, MeeGo, webOS and the Blackberry OS making for many more choices over the coming months. Android is expected to be very popular on tablets and its scant 2.3% market share is expected to rise significantly in Q4.

While Apple is dominating the tablet market, other major brands are also looking to get into the tablet market. The world's number two shipper of computers - Dell - will be getting into the tablet market in a big way in 2011. This comes from the mouth of Dell CEO Michael Dell.

Dell said at an event in Hong Kong, "We're going to have a significant number of new tablets in the next year. There're lots of debate about the size of the market, who's buying these devices, and those questions always emerge when there's a new form factor."

Dell also noted it's easier to develop software for phones based on the Windows Phone 7 operating system than Android. There was no further explanation provided for the comment, so we'd be curious to hear the reasoning behind this statement.

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RE: Short Lived
By Solandri on 11/2/2010 2:46:56 PM , Rating: 2
I cannot see any Android or Windows tablet competing with iPad version one until the spring at the earliest. And then Apple will be releasing iPad version 2 and, if they follow the strategy of the iPhone release cycle, they will drop the price of the iPad V1 and thus under cut a lot of the competition.

Apple really do have an astonishing amount of momentum in the tablet market and I think the extent of the iPad success surprised even them. As far as it is possible to judge it seems iPad sales have mostly been constrained by supply rather than demand and Apple have been frantically ramping up production pipelines.

Agreed on the iPad sales being more than most people expected, but I disagree about Apple having a near-insurmountable lead. The iPad sales actually didn't surprise me - I've been saying forever that a lightweight, easy to use, and cheap tablet would do great in the market.

But Apple screwed it up big time by:
- Leaving out print capability
- Leaving out a USB port / media card slot
- Forcing you to go through the App store
- Pricing it too high

I see tablets as the natural evolution of the clipboard used in business. Fedex and UPS already went down that route, replacing the clipboards their drivers used to carry to gather signatures with custom-made tablet-type devices. If you hit the points I listed above with a weight, battery life, and easy-to-use UI like the iPad, every business will be clamoring to buy it. There's a ton of time wasted by having workers first write things down on a clipboard while they're walking around (in the field or in the warehouse), then entering that info into a computer at a later time. The tablet is the natural solution.

Unfortunately, Apple was unsure of the market for this thing and tied it closely to the publishing industry. They're the ones who insisted on making sure it couldn't print, couldn't save files to memory cards, couldn't connect to other devices via USB. All in the name of protecting their content. Then Apple tried to exert control by forcing you to use the App store (businesses making custom in-house apps are not going to want to install them via the App store), and pricing it too high (I see ~$250 as the magic price point for business).

Unless Apple corrects some of those misses, other tablets will come closer to the specs I've outlined. And once businesses start using them, I predict it's going to be a repeat of the Mac vs. PC in the 1980s with Apple's tablet relegated to ~5% market share, predominantly home users.

RE: Short Lived
By Tony Swash on 11/2/2010 9:09:40 PM , Rating: 2
But Apple screwed it up big time by:
- Leaving out print capability
- Leaving out a USB port / media card slot
- Forcing you to go through the App store
- Pricing it too high

About 10 million people who will buy an iPad this year don't think Apple screwed it up big time :)

Re your points

Printing is in the next iOS release (due this month)

You can connect via a simple USB adapter

Going through the App store is seen as an advantage by most potential customers

I haven't seen many competing same size tablets priced under the iPad
(also if Apple adopt the iPhone upgrade pattern then come the release of iPad Version 2 in early 2011 the viPad version will become a cheap entry point iPad).

RE: Short Lived
By Alexstarfire on 11/3/2010 10:48:02 AM , Rating: 2
Only if your printer supports AirPrint.... or Bonjour, maybe. Not sure about the Bonjour part since I believe I read that in a comment. In short there are a lot of printers you won't be able to use. Would be the same even with SD card or built-in USB capabilities unless you were using a Windows tablet.

At a price premium. Same with a stand, case, and several other things people usually get/want.

True, but I think he was merely saying that having other places as well as the app store would be nice. Being able to gets apps through the internet and barcodes are rather nice.

Could be, could also not be. Just because there isn't much or anything cheaper doesn't mean it isn't priced too high. I would agree with this point, but not as much as others seem to. They think that $250 or $300 is the right price, but I think that's quite unreasonable for the tech involved. $400 to $450 would be nice with included 3G or about $50 less without it. IDK how 3G could cost $130 or anywhere near that.

I wouldn't even get a tablet if it were $100, unless I could make a profit by selling it. A tablet is a useless form factor for me.

RE: Short Lived
By kmmatney on 11/3/2010 12:33:18 PM , Rating: 2
You can print with the iPad, and you don't even need a special AirPrint printer:

"Folks that want porn can buy an Android phone." -- Steve Jobs
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