Android based tablets, including Amazon’s Kindle Fire, saw a “steep drop” in shipments during Q1 2012, as Apple’s popular iPad accounted for a whopping 68 percent of the number of tablets shipped worldwide during the same period.
The latest data released on Thursday by IDC shows that Apple’s worldwide market share increased significantly from the 54.7 percent the company held in the holiday quarter to conclude 2011. Apple’s gains came largely from Amazon’s losses, as the Kindle fire plummeted from 16.8 percent share in the fourth quarter of 2011 to just 4 percent share in the first quarter of 2012.
“Apple reasserted its dominance in the market this quarter, driving huge shipment totals at a time when all but a few Android vendors saw their numbers drop precipitously after posting big gains during the holiday buying season,” said Tom Mainelli, research director, Mobile Connected Devices at IDC.
“Apple’s move to position the iPad as an all-purpose tablet, instead of just a content consumption device, is resonating with consumers as well as educational and commercial buyers. And its decision to keep a lower-priced iPad 2 in the market after it launched the new iPad in March seems to be paying off as well.”
The sharp drop in shipments of the Kindle Fire allowed Samsung to regain the No. 2 position in tablet shipments. Lenovo took fourth place, while the Nook, from Barnes & Noble, came in fifth.
IDC said that there are signs that products from Samsung and Lenovo are beginning to gain traction in the market. The firm expects tablet shipments to rebound in the coming quarters.
Initial success for the Kindle Fire dropped Apple’s total share of tablet shipments to below 60 percent. But the Fire’s strong start seems to have been short-lived. Shipments have dropped precipitously since the holiday season.