HomePod will ‘gain traction’ in booming smart speaker market

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I sent the HomePod back, so I will keep using the single photo I took until somebody stops me.
HomePod is part of a growing product category.
Photo: Charlie Sorrel/Cult of Mac

The smart speaker market continues to explode — and Apple’s expected to carve out an ever-growing piece of it.

According to a new report published by IDC, the global smart speaker market will grow 26.9 percent in 2019. In total, the research firm thinks that 832.7 million total smart speakers will ship this year.

Apple Watch will be king until at least 2022

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App Home Screen Apple Watch Series 4
Don't expect Apple Watch to lose its dominance any time soon.
Photo: Leander Kahney/Cult of Mac

Apple is likely to remain the biggest player in the smartwatch category, a new report from analysts at IDC suggests.

The firm suggests that the overall wearables category is set to reach 125.3 million units this year, of which smartwatches represent around half. By 2022, IDC thinks that 189.9 million wearables will be sold. That’s growth that surpasses either the smartphone or the PC.

Apple dominates global wearables sales with only one product

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What cool new features are hidden inside that slimmer Apple Watch Series 4 frame? [Mockup]
People around the world buy lots of different types of wearable computers. But not enough to outsell the Apple Watch.
Photo illustration: Graham Bower/Cult of Mac

We already know that Apple sells more smartwatches than everyone else. But there are other types of wearable computers. Do companies sell enough of these other types to overtake the Apple Watch? In a word…Nope.

But the second largest wearable maker might surprise you. Especially considering how close behind Apple they are.

Small phone screens go the way of the dodo

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iphone screen2
In just a few years this 4.7-inch iPhone screen will be considered tiny.
Photo: Ste Smith/Cult of Mac

The iPhone 8 display is 4.7 inches. Over the next few years, phone screen sizes are expected to grow to the point that only a tiny fraction will be that small.

Fortunately, it appears Apple is keeping up with the trend. In fact, it could be argued that the iPhone started it.

iPad’s hot streak shows no sign of cooling

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2018 iPad and Apple Pencil
The 9.7-inch iPad released this fall helped keep Apple on top of the tablet market.
Photo: Ian Fuchs/Cult of Mac

There was a time the glory days of the iPad seemed over. Sales declined quarter after quarter. Then the iPad Pro line debuted, and now Apple has seen six straight quarters of increasing tablet shipments.

That’s not true for rival device makers. Samsung tablets haven’t experienced a quarterly shipment increase since at least 2016.  

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.

iPhone bucks global smartphone market downward trend

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IDC global smartphone market
A sequential chart shows Apple was briefly at the top of the global smartphone market, but not in Q1.
Photo: Cult of Mac/IDC

The total number of smartphones shiped worldwide in the first quarter of the year declined, but Apple was immune, experiencing a small increase. Its share of the global market grew as a result.

Arch-rival Samsung was hit though, seeing a small decrease year over year despite the launch of its new flagship models.

Apple sold more tablets in 2017 than Amazon and Samsung combined

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iPad Pro
We're in love with the iPad Pro.
Photo: Apple

Tablet sales are still on the rise worldwide and based on a new report from the International Data Corporation, Apple’s iPad is one of the biggest reasons why.

The IDC published its latest analysis of the tablet market today and according to the firm’s analysts, the detachable tablet market grew 10.3% this past holiday season compared to the year before and Apple was one of the only companies to see much growth.

2017 was a great year for Mac sales

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Mac
Isn't it time you swapped that dusty old Mac for a new one?
Photo: Ste Smith/Cult of Mac

Mac shipments rose in a competitive computer market last year to give Apple a greater market share. The company, alongside HP, enjoyed impressive growth year-over-year, while big players like Asus and Acer saw their shares fall.