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Gartner Estimates 195 Million Tablets Produced in 2013 – 22 Million Fewer than IDC’s Estimate

The analysts screen-shot-2014-03-03-at-09-27-16at Gartner have released their tablet sales estimates for 2013, and once again Apple reigned supreme.

The Cupertino-based smartphone maker shipped 70 million tablets in 2013. Gartner is estimating that global tablet shipments totaled 195 million, giving Apple a 36% share of the market. Android tablet makers came in second, collectively making about 120 million tablets, or 61% of the market, and Windows tablets came in a distant third with an estimated 4 million units sold.

Among the Android tablet makers, Samsung lead the pack with an estimated 37 million tablets sold or about 19% of the market, taking the number 2 spot in the global tablet market (after Apple). Asus came in second with 11 million, while Amazon and Lenovo filled out the top 5 tablet makers with 9.4 million and 6.5 million tablets, respectively.


Gartner believes that Amazon only showed modest growth, increasing their sales by less than a couple million, while Samsung and Lenovo both showed explosive growth. Lenovo more than tripled their 2012 sales, while Samsung quadrupled theirs. According to Gartner, both are benefiting from their decision to target the lower end of the market; much of last year’s growth is attributed to low-end, smaller screen tablets as well as first-time tablet buyers.

"In 2013, tablets became a mainstream phenomenon, with a vast choice of Android-based tablets being within the budget of mainstream consumers while still offering adequate specifications," writes research director Roberta Cozza. "As the Android tablet market becomes highly commoditised, in 2014, it will be critical for vendors to focus on device experience and meaningful technology and ecosystem value — beyond just hardware and cost — to ensure brand loyalty and improved margins."

These figures more or less agree with the estimates released by IDC in late January, though there is a discrepancy of around 22 million tablets sold. IDC also reported that Apple dominated the tablet market, though I’m not sure how either firm can now that for sure. The only solid data on the global tablet market is what Apple releases every quarter; the rest is a WAG.




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jjj March 3, 2014 um 8:39 am

First of all Gartner reports sales to end users here not devices shipped – this accounts for part of the difference between IDC and Gartner.
Second IDC almost always has higher numbers for phones and tabs.
Your mistrust in numbers is exaggerated too , it’s not 2 ppl in a room deciding ,they got a rather large network.
Also, Apple is not the only company reporting numbers,most actually report units sold.

Nate Hoffelder March 3, 2014 um 8:57 am

Thanks for the clarification. Do you have a source for the Lenovo or Samsung numbers? I’d like to add them to watch list.

And BTW, the Amazon numbers haven’t been released, so I’m not completely wrong. And I doubt that any tablet maker has revealed how few Windows tablets they’ve made.

jjj March 3, 2014 um 5:17 pm

Samsung doesn’t release numbers (to the public at least , they might release some local numbers every so often in some countries or quote research numbers and that helps analysts enough).
Lenovo is releasing some numbers in their quarterly results (press release and/or presentation) – in Q4 Lenovo said it shipped 13.9 mil phones , 3.4 mil tablets and 15.3 mil PCs
LG does for smartphones but they aren’t much in tablets yet.Asus not sure if they always release numbers but sometimes they do. Microsoft mentioned some surface revenue numbers in quarterly results or SEC fillings, it’s better than nothing.
So if you check out quarterly results, presentations, SEC fillings and maybe even post results conf calls you’ll find some info but in most cases plenty of tech sites report on those numbers.
Blackberry used to report tablet sales when they actually had some sales ,Nokia must not be selling much so i don’t think they report it and doesn’t matter since M$ is buying them.

Albert March 3, 2014 um 7:51 pm

"The only solid data on the global tablet market is what Apple releases every quarter; the rest is a WAG."

Hey, there’s also the Cisco report saying 75% of tablet web traffic comes from the iPad. What the hell are all these Android tablets doing?

PS: that’s a global percentage, not for NA. I’m going to sleep but I’ll look for the report tomorrow.

Thomas March 3, 2014 um 8:11 pm

Web traffic doesn’t tell you a lot about tablet numbers. I think the main reason for the high Apple numbers on web usage is because most iPads sold are the full size model, while most Android tablet are smaller. I almost never use my 7 inch tablet for web browsing; it’s just too small for that. I use it for reading, music, and the occasional movie.

If I want to browse the web, I’ll use my laptop unless I’m away from home and really need to look something up.

Smoley March 4, 2014 um 1:21 am

>>… and Windows tablets came in a distant third with an estimated 2 million units sold.<<

Doesn't the chart say they sold over 4M?

Thomas March 4, 2014 um 3:31 am

That chart shows sales by operating systems, not company. If these figures are correct, I’d guess about half of the windows tablets sold were made by other companies like Lenova, Asus, Acer, etc. If I were in the market for a Windows 8 tablet, I’d go with someone other than Microsoft too. The Surface tablets are not impressing me.

Nate Hoffelder March 4, 2014 um 6:05 am

Yep. Thanks for catching the typo.

Nate Hoffelder March 4, 2014 um 10:29 pm

Here’s something interesting.

Gartner’s figures for Apple are wrong. Apple’s press releases said that they shipped 74 million, not 70 million:

I don’t know who should be more embarrassed, me for trusting Gartner or Gartner for screwing up basic math.

Tesco is Now a Larger Tablet Maker Than Blackberry – The Digital Reader April 21, 2014 um 1:26 pm

[…] recently announced that they have sold 500,000 tablets since September. Based on the latest estimates from Gartner, this means Tesco is a bigger tablet maker than […]

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