Report: Apple's tablet competitors can't crack 5% market share

With Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL) expected to unveil an LTE-enabled iPad tablet Wednesday, a new report from Forrester Research claims that none of Apple's Android tablet competitors can claim more than 5 percent of the overall tablet market.

According to the research firm's report, Apple still controls 73 percent of the tablet market, and other OEMs are struggling to catch up through improvements in services. Forrester found that Samsung has a 5 percent market share, Motorola Mobility (NYSE:MMI) has 4 percent and Acer a 3 percent share. Interestingly though, the Android tablets that have made the biggest inroads so far are Amazon's Kindle Fire and Barnes & Noble's Nook line, mainly because of what they bring consumers in terms of value-added services.

"Forrester's data shows that the top reason consumers don't buy tablets isn't because of price, or technology--it's because they say 'I don't think I need it,'" Forrester analyst Sarah Rotman Epps wrote in a blog post. "It's about the services--what you can do with the device, which is why Apple, Amazon, and B&N have succeeded in the U.S. where pure hardware plays have failed."

Last week at the Mobile World Congress trade show, Andy Rubin, Google's (NASDAQ:GOOG) senior vice president in charge of mobile, said that Google intends to "double down" on Android tablets in 2012 in an effort to catch up with Apple. Rubin said the 12 million Android tablets sold to date are "not insignificant, but less than I'd expect it to be if you really want to win," and said that "2012 is going to be the year that we double down and make sure we're winning in that space."

AT&T Mobility (NYSE:T) and Verizon Wireless (NYSE:VZ) will launch an LTE version of the iPad, according to a report in the Wall Street Journal last month. AT&T and Verizon have been the only two U.S. carriers so far to offer the iPad, though Sprint Nextel (NYSE:S) started selling the iPhone last fall. Apple will hold an event Wednesday at 1 p.m. ET at the Yerba Buena Center for the Arts Theater in San Francisco, where it is expected to announce its next iPad. In a possibly related move, Verizon is teasing that "something is coming" on its website.

Meanwhile, according to the latest from the rumor mill, the new gadget will be called the iPad HD, not the iPad 3, according to reports from CNET and Venturebeat, which cited unnamed sources. In addition to LTE, according to multiple reports, the next iPad will have a 2048×1536 Retina Display and a faster processor.

For more:
- see this Forrester blog post
- see this Bloomberg article
- see this AppleInsider article
- see this TechCrunch post
- see this CNET article
- see this VentureBeat article
- see this Fortune post

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