Many observers view India as the next China. There is huge potential waiting for the smart device player able to offer India’s mobile consumers a low-cost, prepaid product. In just the latest example of analysts scrambling for data to define the market, new research coming from India suggests an explosion of tablet sales – until you dig into the details.

According to India-based CyberMedia Research, tablet shipments in the world’s second largest market rose to 3.11 million units by the end of 2012. Demand was particularly on fire during the last two quarters with around 1 million tablets shipping. Although Apple was reported in third-place behind Samsung and an Indian manufacturer, there’s a question of whether researchers counted tablets or a cross category of smartphones nicknamed ‘phablets’…

The CyberMedia Research data shows 1.1 million tablets shipped in India during the third quarter, with 1.09 million units for the final quarter of 2012. That is a noticeable increase over early shipments when 904,000 tablets shipped during the second half of last year.

Samsung for all of 2012 led India’s market with 25.1 percent of ‘tablet’ shipments.

India’s Micromax, which makes the Funbook tablets, grabbed second place with 14.3 percent and Apple turned in a third-place showing with 9.1 percent. Samsung and Micromax retained the top two spots during the fourth quarter, but Apple was pushed to fourth place as Android tablets from India’s Karbonn took third place.


But are we comparing apples to oranges?


Turns out, CyberMedia Research counted any device which had a screen at least 5 inches wide as a ‘tablet.’ This could give Samsung’s Galaxy Note II or a number of other smartphones with large screens an edge over Apple.

When the research firm limited its examination of shipments to only devices with at least a 7-inch screen, the results changed. Samsung fell to third place with 10.39 percent of the market, Apple jumped to the second spot with 10.88 percent and home-grown Micromax took top honors with 17.07 percent.

iPad (two-up, iPad, iPad mini, hand)

CyberMedia pledged to separate the ‘phablet’ and ‘tablet’ markets in its next research update. This means we’ll likely see a more representative picture of India’s smartphone and tablet markets when 2013 numbers appear.

Hinting that Samsung’s lead is only due to what researcher Tarun Pathak calls Samung’s “first-mover advantage,” India’s phablet sector is likely to heat up for the South Korean company.

Indeed, Apple has taken a number of marketing steps to increase its visibility as well as combat an image as being too pricey for India. Echoing CyberMedia’s general picture of increased demand, the iPhone and iPad maker has seen greater adoption of its products in the country, quadrupling its sales in the nation recently.

  • Bob

    Just some advice, if you go to India, don’t dress like a foreigner last time I went I got kidnapped and I’m not even joking. They were a bunch of amateurs though, I managed to escape.

    • You have to be extremely dumb for something like that to happen.

      • Bob

        You have to be dumb to be kidnapped?

        I’m pretty sure you just have to be in a remote location and be outnumbered, there’d be nothing you could do.

        You’re obviously upset as you’re most likely from India and don’t want people talking about your country like that, but the truth hurts.

        The truth is that India and it’s government is corrupt and they’re all easily bought with money. Human life has no value in India. Nearly every cop will let you go if you pay them an insignificant amount of money. I could go on for ages.

        India will never develop as a country, it will always be a third world country for the foreseeable future. You can’t expect much of a country like India.

      • TesticularFortitude

        Wow. Tell him how you really feel.

      • The Indian

        If you were kidnapped you’re dumb enough to roam around in a shady alley or place

    • Bob the builder, I see.

      • Its Bob the Retard , actually

      • Bob

        My names not Bob, which makes you the retard.

      • H5ire

        ^i see Dum”Bob” somewhere in your name..!! 🙂

  • Kurt

    “Turns out, CyberMedia Research counted any device which had a screen at least 5 inches wide as a ‘tablet.’ ”

    Galaxy note is not 5 inches wide. Its 5.5 inches diagonal but less than 5 inches on its longest size (we are talking screen size yes?) Or what the wording wrong in the blog post? #confused

    • TesticularFortitude

      Thank you!!!

      • Kurt


      • TesticularFortitude

        Im Confused too… Lol

      • Kurt

        So we are in the same boat.

      • TesticularFortitude