While there were a few bright spots, the Android tablet market continued to constrict in the last quarter of 2016 according to Strategy Analytics. The site Q4 2016 report is out and with it, you see that overall, Android tablet sales dropped by 10% year-over-year with Samsung seeing a 10% drop themselves year-over-year. Interestingly, relatively new comer Huawei saw a 49% increase in growth over last year as they made their first significant efforts in the tablet space in 2016. It seems to have paid off – at least for now. Amazon also enjoyed a nice growth rate of 21% thanks to their Fire lineup of Android-powered tablets.
The news on tablet sales didn’t just impact Android. Apple saw a 19% drop in iPad sales year-over-year in Q4 2016.
Perhaps the most interesting tidbit in the report is that Windows based tablets grew by some 19% year-over-year and now account for some 16% of the
market. This, despite the fact that Microsoft hasn’t released an update to their Surface tablets in over a year. Fundamentally, the Surface is a 2-in-1 device that is detachable.
All of this points to the general challenge that pure tablet devices are having in the market, regardless if they are running Android or iOS. It is also points out, not directly, that 2-in-1 devices like the Microsoft Surface are growing in market share. That could be based on their Operating System but more likely due to their design.
On Friday I published an opinion piece that points to 2017 being the year that Chrome OS could bring the death of the Android tablet. This independent data from Strategy Analytics backs up the point that overall, the tablet form factor is struggling and consumers are looking for detachable, 2-in-1 devices that give them a solid ecosystem and performance all in one device.
Give the full analysis a read on Strategy Analytics site.