Don’t be fooled. The tablet market is, indeed, alive and well. But it’s once-runaway growth has stalled considerably.
Following the first year-over-year decline in worldwide tablet shipments in the fourth quarter of 2014 (4Q14), the International Data Corporation (IDC) has “scaled back its five year forecast for the product category.”
According to a report summary shared with MMW, worldwide shipments are expected to reach 234.5 million units in 2015, a modest year-over-year increase of 2.1% from 2014.
Although the outlook has been tempered, IDC still expects low but positive growth for the market in the years to come as demand in the commercial sector increases, and as Microsoft slowly gains a foothold.
“Despite the growing popularity of phablets, there still remains a portion of the market that wants to use a larger device so they can tailor their experience to the appropriate screen size,” said Jitesh Ubrani, Senior Research Analyst for the Worldwide Quarterly Tablet Tracker. “Meanwhile, an increasing number of vendors behind small tablets are reducing prices and adopting features like voice calling to entice consumers to purchase their products over competing phablets, making the dynamics of phablets vs voice-capable tablets an interesting one to watch.”