Gartner Inc has updated its earlier forecast on the growth of tablet PC market this year. From 42.7%, it now expects the segment of the industry to grow 53.4%. Total shipments are expected to reach up to 184 million units. Thus, it could easily be inferred that this category is continuously eating much of the PC market share.
In comparison, sales of traditional PCs are forecast to drop by 11.2% this year, compared to shipments in 2012. About 303,100 units are expected to be shipped by yearend. In April, the IT research and advisory company originally predicted that sales of PCs would decrease by 7.3% this year.
Moreover, the ultramobile category is gaining more popularity. That consists of devices like netbooks and lightweight laptops. Even those are outpacing shipments of traditional PCs. However, when traditional computers and ultramobiles are combined, their sales are expected to still decrease to 8.4% this year. Previously, Gartner predicted that sales of tablets would overtake shipments of desktop PCs and ultramobiles by 2017. It has come earlier.
More popular tablets
For the tablets, Gartner is confident that cheaper and smaller devices would be more popular. The 7-inch tablets are getting more preferred because of the significant price decline compared to more premium tablets. Cheaper priced tablets from Amazon (Kindle Fire) and Google (Nexus slates) are expected to help bolster overall growth of the category.
Logically, sales of smaller tablets would also possibly lower the overall appeal of smartphones. For quite some time now, many analysts are predicting that handsets would continue losing their appeal. But it has to be clarified that Gartner expects the mobile phone market to continue experiencing steadier growth.
The mobile phone segment is expected to be driven by Android smartphones in the emerging markets and by mid-tier handsets in the more mature markets. Developed markets have already become saturated so that growth in this segment could rely on emerging countries were preference is more on cheaper devices.
Lastly, Gartner predicted that Android would remain as the most preferred and most popular operating system in 2013. This could be attributed to higher growth in cheaper smartphones and tablets.
This year, Android is expected to take a 38% market share compared to Windows’ 14% and iOS/Mac OS’ 12%. By next year, Android’s share would further rise to 45% compared to 15% for Windows and 14% for iOS/Mac OS.
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