Android tablets have finally began to make inroads into the iPad’s seemingly unassailable market dominance in the third quarter, figures reveal, amid strong demand for the budget-priced Google Nexus 7 and Amazon Kindle Fire HD.
According to a study conducted by IDC, the share of the market held by the iPad in its many iterations dipped to 50 per cent in the period from August to September. That’s down from 60 per cent during the year-ago quarter.
The iPad’s slide came despite a 26 per cent rise in the number of units shipped to 14 million from 11 million 12 months ago.
Samsung was the biggest beneficiary of Apple’s decline, with 5.1m shipments of the Galaxy Note range driving a rise in market share from seven per cent to 18 per cent.
Amazon’s Kindle Fire HD boosted the retail giant’s share to nine per cent. Meanwhile, AsusTek, which makes the Google Nexus 7 on Google’s behalf, saw its proportion of the market grow from 3.8 per cent to 8.6 per cent.
Ryan Reith, program manager for mobile devices at IDC, said: "Competitors are turning up the pressure on market leader Apple.”
Apple’s figures are however expected to make for better reading for the Cupertino-based company next quarter, thanks to the arrival of the iPad 4 and iPad mini late last month. Apple claims these sold a total of three million units in their first weekend on sale.