Based on the preliminary data from market intelligence firm International Data Corp. (IDC), worldwide tablet shipments posted a decline of 3.9% year over year or about 38.4 million units in the first quarter of 2022. However, IDC said shipments are still above pre-pandemic levels.
Increase in previous years (2020-2021) was driven by the sudden shift of work and school to a remote setup.
“While the tablet market is certainly on a downward trend at the global level because of lower demand in mature markets, it is interesting to see several new players entering the emerging markets, especially smartphone vendors like realme, OPPO, Xiaomi, and so on,” said Anuroopa Nataraj, senior research analyst with IDC’s Mobility and Consumer Device Trackers. “While their volumes are not significant enough to move the market as of now, it is the high demand for tablets in the emerging markets since the onset of the pandemic that has led these vendors to take advantage of their existing channel presence to build an ecosystem where consumers possess multiple products of the same brand, just like Apple.”
Apple’s iPads remain the top seller with a market share of 31.5% or shipping 12.1 million units. That’s down from 12.7 million units or 31.7% market share in the first quarter of 2021. Samsung comes in second with 21.1% market share. Amazon.com (9.6%), Lenovo (7.8%), and Huawei (5.8%) completes the top 5 tablet vendors in terms of shipments.
Chromebooks also continued to decline with shipments down 61.9% year over year in 1Q22. While the overall market contracted due to saturation in mature markets, Asia Pacific (excluding Japan and China) still recorded growth in the quarter as there have been several large investments in digital education in the region.
“The decline in Chromebooks doesn’t come as a surprise given the buildup of inventory due to reduced demand over the past several quarters,” said Jitesh Ubrani, research manager with IDC’s Mobility and Consumer Device Trackers. “Barring any major shifts in supply, we do anticipate the inventory to clear out with the help of promotional activity over the course of the coming months and new shipments will start to pick up as the educational buying cycle begins to ramp up again.”