iPad remains top dog as tablet market shrinks

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iPad-Pro
Farewell, old friend.
Photo: Ste Smith/Cult of Mac

The iPad remains the king of tablets after strong sales helped the device grab its highest share of the worldwide tablet market since 2014.

Apple confirmed on Tuesday that it sold 9.1 million iPads last quarter, which helped its market share grow 2.1 percent despite a drop in overall tablet shipments.

The iPad has been the best-selling tablet worldwide since it made its debut in 2010. It’s not too difficult to see why; it’s a spectacular device that still has no real competition. Android tablets were never really that good, and people stopped buying them years ago.

Nevertheless, iPad growth has been falling in recent years. Consumers hold onto tablets a lot longer than they hold onto their smartphones, and with the latter getting larger over the years, some have decided that they no longer need a tablet at all.

The second quarter of 2018 was a good one for Apple’s iPad business, however.

iPad’s market share grows in Q2 2018

Sales of 9.1 million units helped the iPad grab a 28.8 percent share of the worldwide tablet market last quarter, according to IDC. That’s an increase of 2.1 percent year-over-year, despite the fact that overall tablet sales fell 11.7 percent over the same period.

Samsung, which still holds onto second place, saw no growth last quarter after shipments fell from 6 million units to 5.3 million units. Amazon, which sits in fifth place, saw its growth fall a whopping 49.9 percent after sales slumped to a mere 1.1 million units.

Tablet market share Q2 2018
iPad’s share is on the up.
Photo: IDC

That 28.8 percent share of the market is Apple’s largest since 2014, when its share was 32.7 percent. It grabbed just 26.8 percent in 2015, 25.9 percent in 2016, and 24.9 percent in 2017. Apple could see further growth in the future as a result of its more affordable 9.7-inch tablet.

“Apple’s latest iPad launched towards the end of the quarter and along with the company’s renewed focus on the education market should prove to be quite lucrative in the coming quarters,” IDC explains. But Apple’s more expensive slates are killing it, too.

Of the 9.1 million tablets Apple shipped last quarter, 1.8 million were iPad Pros, which makes Apple the leader in the “detachable” market, too.