Report: Android dominates tablet market with over half of global shipments

Report: Android dominates tablet market with over half of global shipments

Summary: The iPad is no longer the infallible tablet king that it used to be, even just a year ago.


It wasn't long ago that the iPad was unquestionably the leader in the tablet market -- if not the entire market itself.

But the Android ecosystem has proven that it could catch up, thanks especially to entries that have debuted in the last two years -- namely Amazon's Kindle Fire brand and Google's own Nexus 7 series built with mobile OEM partners.

As further evidence of that, Strategy Analytics has published its second quarter report for global tablet shipments.

The market intelligence firm found that Android accounted for 67 percent of worldwide shipments in Q2. Both iOS and Windows declined to 28 percent and 4.5 percent of the global market share, respectively.

The total number of shipments came close to approximately 51.7 million units, up from 36.1 million units during the same quarter last year.

While attributing Android's success to a more stable collective of hardware partners, Strategy Analytics' director of tablets coverage Peter King tried to put Apple's quarter into better perspective:

Apple iOS shipments were 14.6 million iPads in Q2 2013 which declined 14 percent annually. In the same quarter a year ago the first Retina display iPads were launched which could partly explain the decline as there were no new models in this quarter. However, to compensate that, iPad Mini which was not available a year ago, now freely available was expected to take the figure higher than 14.6 million.

Strategy Analytics subscribers can download the entire Q2 report now. Otherwise, it costs $6,999 for individual purchase.

Chart via Strategy Analytics

Topics: Mobility, Android, iOS, iPad, Tablets

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  • What?

    I dislike MSFT as much as the next guy, but how is going from 0.5 to 4.5 a decline????
    • I have another question

      What is a tablet? For MSFT, is it only RT or does the Surface Pro count?

      What about the ThinkPad Helix or the Vaio Duo and similar?
      x I'm tc
      • what is a tablet

        @ x I'm tc >> I would say a tablet is a mobile computer based on a touch OS ... With Windows 8 this could be nearly anythign - and that is a bad thing ... IMHO. With most every other company they differentiate between a mobile touch OS (tablet/phone) and ultra portable/laptop/etc... traditional computer OS.
        Bee Ryan
    • I guess the author is confused.

    • Also, headline

      Android over half was last year's news. Over two thirds is this news.
  • I was about to say the same thing

    This is just more ZDNet Anti-Microsoft bias. It is pervasive here. I, on the other hand don't hate MSFT as much as most other on here. I think they should be given an even shot just as their competitors are. Sadly, ZDNet simply doesn't think so.
    • Bad companies

      No, in my mind MSFT comes second to Apple. Google is not much distant 3rd.
      The hate for MSFT comes from their arrogance and disregard for the customers and the attempt to go after everyone with bogus patent claims. They are not as bad as Apple, but still quite evil.
      • I consider

        Stealing IP from other companies and leaving it to your OEM's to pay for it, far more evil. Therefore it is neither Apple nor Microsoft that deserve the evil monniker but rather Google, the IP thief (and user data thief of course, let's not forget how this company earns money).
        • With Google

          With Google, YOU are the product.

          They dont so much as "steel" your personal IP, but they do use it fund ALL the "FREE" and "open" stuff people love so much!

          Some day Google will innovate beyond search. I just wonder at what cost...
          Bee Ryan
        • BS man

          Apple is the biggest thief of them all. Steve Jobs was bragging about it.
  • Pricing issues

    The major issue is pricing. I didn't see much use for a tablet other than to learn about tablets. I just couldn't justify spending Apple's prices for a "gadget". I bought a used Asus Android tablet and basically use it for reading. In fact, with the substantial difference in price between Kindle and physical books, the tablet actually paid for itself.

    Those who are enamored by the Apple name will continue paying the premium price, but "the rest of us" will look elsewhere, and for this product not to Microsoft.
  • Surface

    Having tried almost ALL platforms, and while being corporate agnostic, i can say that the Surface is by far THE best tablet out there, yes, Microsoft's surface.
    People who did not try it should try it first or be quite and stop spreading ignorance.

    the Surface PRO is a FULL fledged computer, that fact alone puts the iPad to shame.
    • the Surface PRO is a FULL fledged computer

      It sure is, and it is priced like one as well.

      Its also overkill for many people who want a tablet, not a laptop.

      There is nothing wrong with a surface pro, but for someone who is in the market for a 7" tablet (which is fast becoming the most popular size), its not in the same market.
  • Shipments are not sales

    That is why Android has only a fraction of the web traffic.
    • What I would like to see is a breakdown of each tablet by price.

      There is a huge flood of POS androids out there. We've bought a few of them in our IT department as play toys. They are not even that. These systems unfortunately do two things, one is they cause outrageous numbers like above, and two they give Android a unfair black eye. I really would like to see a more realistic comparison.
      • Agreed.

        But there's never a real comparison. Apple now has two tablets, correct (iPad and iPad mini)? Android is sold on HUNDREDS of different types of tablets with varying software abilities on each... There's never a true comparison for Apple as their business (and therefore their hardware and software) operate unlike anyone else.

        What this does say, however, is that Apple is slipping in the demographics (but a breakdown would probably show that in the U.S. and likely the U.K., the Apple tablets are still on top).

        And for those vying for Microsoft here, these are the RT sales (from multiple manufacturers) and not the Pro versions. Pro is a slate and not typically included in these numbers. However, it would likely not change them by much (a couple of points at most).
        • Again, shipping vs. sales

          If people are really buying the Android tablets in such numbers, why aren't they using them for web browsing?

          • Worldwide?

            The study I just linked to is North America. It would be nice to see stats from around the world. I'm sure Android is doing a little better in China for example.
      • What does price have to do with it?

        A tablet might be cheap, but if it gets the job done, so what? Should a cheap Android tablet only count 50% as much as an iPad?.

        That's kind of like saying that a Hyundai shouldn't be counted when measuring auto market shares because it isn't as expensive and well-built as a Mercedes.
        • Getting the jobo done...

          Based on usage statistics, it would see the iOS tablets are getting the job done. Now if the sales/shipping figures are correct - it would be even a bigger issue against Android - as much more units have sold, but online traffic, apps and actual use is far, far less...

          so maybe 5 Androids = 1 iOS?
          Bee Ryan