Three months after launching, the iPad is already in the top five of portable PC sales, according to Canalys.
The research firm said the iPad won a 6% share of the segment in Q2 with sales of 3 million units, and tips the device to remain top of the heap of portable PCs through 2011 despite a raft of rival products going on sale by end-2010.
Those rival products will spur growth in the portable PC market over the next four years, Canalys said, forecasting sales of the devices will grow from 12.5 million units in 2010 to 66 million by end-2014.
To date, firms including Asustek, Acer and Dell have announced plans to compete head-on with Apple in the portable PC market.
However, the growing popularity of iPad-style devices means traditional PC makers must ramp-up their innovations to keep pace, analyst Chris Jones said.
“To capture share moving forward, PC makers will have to take the netbook to the next level or go after new customer segments with their own pads.”
Traditional PC vendor’s chances of success got harder during 2Q, as sales of netbooks slowed due to a lack of innovation, Canalys states.
‘The key to creating a great user experience on a connected mobile device is ensuring that the hardware and software work together in harmony,’ Jones notes.
He predicts mobile platforms including Android, iOS and webOS will fare well in the portable PC market over the next three years, while BlackBerry, Chrome, MeeGo and Windows are outside bets.