Study: Android tablets catching up on the iPad

By , Oct 2, 2012

We can deride the quality and culture of Android tablets, but the once ginormous lead Apple’s iPad had is shrinking amid the rise of tweener tablets.

In a bit of a two-edge sword, a new study finds 25 percent of Americans own a tablet, with Apple’s device claiming just over half of the US tablet market. A year ago, more than 8 out of 10 tablets purchased bore the Apple logo…

According to the Pew Internet & American Life Project, the iPad has 52 percent of the domestic tablet market while Android devices comprise 48 percent. In 2011, Android-based tablets held just 15 percent of the American market.

The study’s 48 percent figure could be low, as it was conducted before Google’s $99 Nexus 7 and the Amazon Kindle Fire HD could be purchased.

Apple likely has also noticed Android’s encroachment on the iPad’s once secure territory. What else would explain CEO Tim Cook’s decision to reverse Steve Jobs’ public dismissal of talk of a smaller tablet?

Apple is expected to soon announce just that – a tablet that could be the little brother to the current 9.7-inch iPad. One unknown is whether the iPad Mini (or whatever its final name) will also carry a smaller price tag.

We constantly fight the urge to throw in with the Apple ‘fan boy’ culture where the Cupertino, California company can do no wrong and product releases are cloaked in near religious zealotry. However, the iPad has experienced massive success and had the tablet stage to itself for more than two and a half years now.

No matter how well designed, one brand cannot stand alone forever.

The Android tablets’ growing marketshare is riding two waves. First, as the Pew study illustrated, the tablet market is growing beyond the consumers who love to live on the bleeding-edge of technology — and particularly when that device is made by Apple.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rDvweiW5ZKQ&feature=plcp

As the tablet market matures, the demographic shifts from mostly young people to include older consumers and families. Samsung’s recent commercial for its smartphone poked fun at this shifting demographic. While the ad targeted the iPhone, it could apply to all technology that becomes mainstream.

The second factor influencing the growth of Android tablets is simple economics. While the core Apple follower often does not care about price, as the attraction of tablets widens, devices must also speak to people on a budget.

At $99 or $199, Android-powered tablets and smartphones will naturally gain marketshare. The key unknown is whether a budget tablet can also offer superior technology and design.

For consumers, the approach of Android tablets may actually be good. Apple, by squeezing its suppliers and resellers, has achieved enviable profit margins from its products. The threat of greater competition will likely lower Apple prices somewhat.

The company’s continued lead in the tablet arena may more be a question of how much profit Apple is willing to give up to retain that marketshare.

What do you think?

Is Android’s advance unstoppable?

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  • charlie

    go…go….Android, you will win the race!

    • Emre SÜMENGEN

      Thanks Charlie. My boyfriend is real hard with android. I’m all apple here babe

  • http://twitter.com/MCaudebec Maxim∑

    Keep in mind again that this is a phone survey, not actual sales data. So it means nothing

  • Emre SÜMENGEN

    When I read articles like this I’m so gay(happy). Also I’m gay anyways.

    • seyss

      Wtf. Why do u gay ppl love to make it public? Do u see ppl saying “im straight” in an iPhone forum?

      • http://www.facebook.com/zacksloane Zachary Sloane

        Wtf. Why do u annoying people hate so much. Who cares if they are proud. When you are part of a culture that’s been ridiculed and put down for years and years, this is how it is. People show their pride at any opportunity. No need to be a asshat about it.

      • seyss

        Asking why homosexuals like to show off is being asshat now? Spare
        me, you hypocrite

      • Kurt

        good point. glad someone around here has some coming sense.

      • SimonReidy

        He’s obviously not gay and is trolling. Check his other posts.

  • Urim Morina

    dont worry apple will sue them :P

    • Emre SÜMENGEN

      Ohhhh you little rascle you! Don’t talk like that. Apple has been fair.

      • Kurt

        Dude, SHUT UP. I know that you’re not the real Emre SÜMENGEN. You even copied his avatar. You’re as childish and immature as that person who impersonated Liu Zhenyu. Oh wait, maybe you’re that person. Both have the same sentence styles.

      • Fuck you

        Liu Zhenyu (who the hell would remember that posters name)… That’s you fucktard. You’re just stealing someone’s identity dip shit

      • Kurt

        You just created another account which yet still copied someone on this blog, how cute!

      • Kurt

        if you are mad at triptrop, why are you using my name? :-?

      • The Real Kurt

        I saw your reply to someone “something tells me you are not the only one born with that name” and I got pissed off because I also happen to have the same name :)

        I’ll change it :P

      • Kurt

        why not change it back to Liu Zhenyu? it’s a cool name, no need to be ashamed. although i do admit i like my name, if you pronounce it the way americans do. in europe its quite ugly and only elderly men have it. in usa is a young persons name and quite rare. if triptrop does it again, just contacts sabastian on twitter or via email

      • The Real Kurt

        I’m not Liu Zhenyu.

      • Joseph Lim

        He’s not Liu Zhenyu fagtard, he wouldnt write bullshit like “The Real Kurt” read the real Liu Zhenyu’s profile, he is does not troll and use ppls names.

  • Johnathan Jennings

    Because iOS is boring.

    • Johnathan Jennings

      Stop pressing the down button. You all know its true. I have an iPhone 5. It’s boring.

      • http://www.facebook.com/ledzeppelin96 Stanley Traub

        Its only boring to you “techies” who think you know hella shit about computer science and tech jargon just because you decided to go android with an “open” system (which btw is really bad and doesnt mean much to me or anyone else for that matter), when in fact you live in your mom’s basement and have nothing better to do than troll on apple centered blogs.

  • Kurt

    People buy Android tablets because they are smaller than the iPad.
    People buy Android phones because they are bigger than the iPhone.
    They are a lot cheaper too.

    • Outhig

      The tablets are a lot cheaper, the S3 isn’t.

    • Al

      Honestly, android is an operating system.. Of course they will catch up to the iPad.. It’s no denying that. If you were to compare Samsung Tab 2 to the dominance of the iPad or even the Asus Transformer then it would be no comparison. Google’s goal is to put there operating system in as many hands as possible, they deal with many manufactures. So, yes.. It’s inevitable. I have a iPad, I enjoy an iPad.. But I do realize that an average Joe will be fine having a less expensive and affordable Android tablet as another choice..

  • macboy74

    Apple tablet cost: $399
    Android tablet cost: $40 no name 8GB running eclair or GB at drugs stores and big lots.

    High end Apple iPhone: $199 for 16GB ios6
    High end Android phone: SGSIII for $99 16GB ICS
    You get what you pay for huh

    • Heatfan316

      Stupidity is strong with this one yes:)

      • genXhippie

        Well said.

      • Heatfan316

        Thanks.

  • Bambino

    how many cheap plastic devices run android?

  • http://www.facebook.com/dark.moyan Đark Moyan

    Honestly Speaking I am fan of Android and Symbian. (Waiting to see Blackberry 10 OS)
    I have used iphone 3G, A lot of Symbian (10+) and more than 20 other mobile including 5 China Handset. Now using Sony Ericsson Xperia Neo and I love it very much.
    I don’t like iphone but I like iPad ^_^
    if this ipad mini comes around 200$ I will buy it.

  • Guest

    is it ok if i buy an android tablet or will people hate me on this site? or are apple fans like liberals who cant be tolerant towards people who ‘think different’

  • http://thedroidtablets.com/ Karan Lugani

    Android Tablets have the real power. They are cheap, they have android, loaded with features and they are awesome. But iPad will remain iPad.