IDC forecast: iPad up, Android down, BlackBerry irrelevant

The iPad is still the one to beat, as Android's market share is expected to dip, according to the IDC tablet forecast.

Bye-bye Blackberry.  It's fading fast says IDC.
Bye-bye Blackberry. It's fading fast says IDC. Best Buy

IDC has updated its tablet forecast, raising Apple's iOS share at the expense of Android, while RIM's Blackberry fades to irrelevance.

IDC now expects iOS to grab 62.5 percent of the tablet market in 2012, up from 58.2 percent in 2011. Meanwhile, Android's share will slip to 36.5 percent from 38.7 percent in 2011.

And where does that leave BlackBerry? Virtually nowhere. RIM's tablet platform fades to 1 percent of the market in 2012, down from an already-tiny 1.7 percent share in 2011.

The market researcher is not currently forecasting Windows 8 or Windows RT tablets in its Media Tablet Tracker, as they appear in the PC Tracker forecast. However, it will do so starting next quarter.

"Our current thinking, based upon early pricing expectations for these products, is that Windows-based tablets will be largely additive to our existing media tablet market forecast. We don't expect Windows-based tablets to necessarily take share from Apple and Android, but will grow the overall tablet market," wrote Tom Mainelli, an IDC analyst.

IDC global tablet forecast.
IDC global tablet forecast. IDC

And he had this to say about the iPad. "The addition of the Retina Display and 4G capabilities to the third-generation products clearly enticed many current owners to upgrade. And Apple's decision to keep two iPad 2s in the market at lower prices--moving the entry-level price down to $399--seems to be paying off as well."

Apple's hold on the market will only get stronger if it launches a sub-$300, 7-inch tablet , as rumored, Mainelli added.

Looking at the overall global market for tablets, IDC expects strong demand in the second half of 2012. IDC now sees a worldwide market of 107.4 million units, up from its previous forecast of 106.1 million units.

IDC also revised upward its 2013 tablet forecast number from 137.4 million units to 142.8 million units. And by 2016 worldwide shipments should reach 222.1 million units.

About the author

Brooke Crothers writes about mobile computer systems, including laptops, tablets, smartphones: how they define the computing experience and the hardware that makes them tick. He has served as an editor at large at CNET News and a contributing reporter to The New York Times' Bits and Technology sections. His interest in things small began when living in Tokyo in a very small apartment for a very long time.

 

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