With 26 million iPads sold around the world in Q4, Apple is still the leading tablet maker tracked by IDC. Coming in a distant second was Samsung with an estimated 14.5 million tablets (nearly double the 7.8 million sold in Q4 2012). Amazon, Asus, and Lenovo fill out the top 5 with 5.8 million, 3.4 million, and 3.1 million tablets sold. The rest of the market collectively sold 23.3 million, bringing the total to 76.9 million tablets sold worldwide in Q4 2013 (up from 60 million).
If these figures are accurate then I can see at least 2 major surprises. Amazon didn't do nearly as well as I would have expected. They actually sold fewer tablets than in Q4 2012, meaning that their market share shrank.
Samsung's market share grew, but that comes as no surprise; throw enough different models on the market and you're bound to sell a few units. No, the other surprise is Lenovo. They went from not even being ranked to knocking B&N out of the top 5. That's not bad.
But it is also a data point that should be taken with a large grain of salt. While writing this post I double checked estimates for previous quarters and I see that IDC believes that Amazon didn't rank in the top 5 tablet makers in Q2 or Q3, and they just barely made it in in Q1. I'm not sure I believe their estimates, but TBF I don't have better data.
In other news, Apple reported in their investor conference call earlier this week that they had sold 7 million iPads to schools and universities in the US. If you subtract the 4 and a half million iPads reported sold around this time last year, we get a new estimate of Apple's penetration into the education market.
Around 2.5 million iPads were sold to schools across the US these past 11 months, giving Apple the single largest share of the educational tablet and laptop market. Coming in a distant second are devices running Windows, with Chrome taking a surprise third place (or so says the WSJ).