Tablet Market Grinds to a Halt, Smartwatch Sales Shrink

Worldwide tablet shipments reached 38.7 million in the second quarter of 2016, according to preliminary data from the International Data Corporation Worldwide Quarterly Tablet Tracker, which means growth continues to decline: the market receded 12.3% year over year.

A majority of tablets shipped this past quarter were Android-based systems (65%) followed by iOS, which captured 26%.


“The market has spoken as consumers and enterprises seek more productive form factors and operating systems,” said Jitesh Ubrani, senior research analyst with IDC’s Worldwide Quarterly Mobile Device Trackers.

Despite the continued decline in slates, the form factor still accounts for over three-quarters of the market.

“While growth in the detachable category is undeniable, slates continue to represent the vast majority of the segment. Slate sales are declining but they still serve a purpose and will do so for a long time to come,” said Jean Philippe Bouchard, research director, Tablets at IDC.

Apple’s launch of its second detachable helped lessen its year-over-year decline to 9%, but more importantly it helped raise Apple’s average selling price and revenue.

Wearables are doing even worse. For the first time since smartwatches came out, shipments from vendors are down from the year before, according to IDC.

Smartwatch Demand Drops for First Time; Apple Watch Shipments Down 55%

Smartwatch shipments were down 32 per cent during the second quarter of 2016, when compared to the same period last year. A total of 3.5 million smartwatches were shipped during second quarter of 2016, down from 5.1 million during the same period last year.

That decline was driven by 55 per cent drop in Apple Watch shipments.Still, the Apple Watch remains the most popular brand of smartwatch, with a 47 per cent market share.

“What will bear close observation is how the smartwatch market evolves from here,” said Ramon T. Llamas, research manager for IDC’s Wearables team. “Continued platform development, cellular connectivity and an increasing number of applications all point to a smartwatch market that will be constantly changing. These will appeal to a broader market, ultimately leading to a growing market.”