IDC is out today with its numbers on tablet shipments for Q4 2014 showing Apple remained on top of the market both last quarter and throughout 2014 despite a slight drop in overall market share.
Apple sold 21.4 million iPads during the holiday quarter last year, which gave the company around 28% market share compared to 33% with 26 million units sold during the same quarter last year. Apple beats out number two Samsung, according to IDC, which grabbed 14.5% of the market in Q4 with 11 million units shipped. Samsung also dipped in overall market share from 17.2% with 13.5 million units shipped in the year ago quarter.
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The remaining spots in the top five for Q4 include Lenovo (4.8%), ASUS (4%), and Amazon (2.3%). While Apple and Samsung saw slight drops, Lenovo and the “Others” category gained market share during the quarter.
For the year, Apple came in with 27.6% market share (down from 34% in 2013), while Samsung comes in at 17.5% (down from 18.1% in 2013). Again, the declines come as Lenovo and the “Others” category grow in market share for the year. Also in the top five, Asus and Amazon, lost market share during Q4 and 2014.
While a potentially declining tablet market has been a big topic of conversation over the last few quarters, Apple and CEO Tim Cook have consistently defended the product line citing new opportunities for growth going forward. During the company’s latest Q1 2015 earnings call, for example, Cook noted he hopes the company’s partnership with IBM to push mobile enterprise solutions will be an area that drives iPad growth in the near future. The fear, as IDC put it today, is that “cannibalization at the bottom from the iPhone and at the top from the Mac appear to be a serious issue for the iPad.”
As always, IDC’s numbers account for units shipped, not necessarily sales. IDC’s numbers include “slate tablets plus 2-in-1 tablets.”