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Android Tablet Market Share Falls Below 50% for First Time in 10 Years

by Eric Smith | Aug 02, 2022

Inflation has gripped household budgets and consumer sentiment is on the decline, yet mobile computing demand persists as user behaviors favor hybrid work and tablet shipments continue to outpace pre-pandemic levels. Tablet demand in Q2 2022 followed this pattern of higher shipments for premium and detachable tablets, thus favoring Apple, Windows OEMs, and to some extent, Samsung – pushing Android market share down to 49%. Mounting macro-economic pressures, lower consumer sentiment, the evolving threat of COVID, and a prolonged Russia/Ukraine conflict could turn the second half of the year much more challenging.

Android Fell Below Majority Tablet Market Share

These two factors of inflation and hybrid work create an remarkable dynamic where: 1) wealthy consumers continue spending on premium devices, while average consumers pull back on spending in lower tiers; and, 2) purchases favor detachable tablets to get work done rather than solely serve entertainment needs. All the top vendors now have detachables in their line-ups, spanning implementations on five different operating systems. In order to be successful in this new environment, brands must continue improving tablet hardware and software with the goal of improving user productivity.

Android tablet demand pulled down market performance as all other operating systems outpaced the market decline of -15%. Apple benefitted from a wealthier customer base than Android, but supply issues kept them from reaching even more demand than they did during the quarter. Windows OEMs, led by Microsoft, also performed well as commercial demand is stronger than consumer demand, favoring premium Windows devices. We should also highlight the rising strength of HarmonyOS from Huawei – and the company’s reach into Russia as other top vendors left the market after the invasion of Ukraine – as a factor in siphoning Android demand. Perhaps Android’s fortunes will change with Prime Day in Q3 and year-end promotions in Q4.

The full report from Strategy Analytics’ Connected Computing Devices (CCD) service, Preliminary Global Tablet Shipments and Market Share: Q2 2022 Results can be found here: https://www.strategyanalytics.com/access-services/devices/tablets-and-pcs/connected-computing-devices/market-data/report-detail/preliminary-global-tablet-shipments-and-market-share-q2-2022-results-290722

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