Apple fends off tablet competition

Tablet sales are continuing to swell, but despite the entry of new challengers, Apple still has a commanding lead.
 
IDC estimates that tablet sales climbed 88.9% sequentially in the second quarter, and 300% year-on-year. Some 9.3 million iPad 2s were sold during the quarter, driving Apple’s share of the global market to 68.3%, compared to 65.7% in the first quarter.
 
RIM only managed to carve out a 4.9% share of sales with its PlayBook tablet. The company's gain appears to have come at Google's expense – Android's collective share of sales fell to 26.8% in 2Q11 from 34% in 1Q. IDC predicts that Android's share of the market will fall even further in the current quarter, but then start picking up again in the final quarter of the year.
 
Due to the $99 (€72) fire sale of HP's TouchPad tablet, the share of WebOS is tipped to climb to 4.7% in 3Q, but then fall back to zero by the first quarter of next year - unless HP develops a clear plan to license or sell the OS to other vendors.
 
Apple may also finally cede some share in the market, with IDC forecasting its share will fall closer to 50% by the end of the year.

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