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Tablet shipments continued their global decline in Q2

Apple retains tablet crown as market recedes more than 12 percent, according to IDC research.


The public's love affair with tablets appears to be over.

The market for slates slid more than 12 percent in the second quarter, according to data released Monday by market researcher IDC, the seventh consecutive decline in quarterly shipments. The sector saw 38.7 millions shipped during the quarter compared with 44.1 million units in the year-ago period.

Following several years of huge tablet growth, tablet shipments have been dropping off steadily since the sector posted its first-ever shipment decline in the fourth quarter of 2014. Reasons for declining consumer demand range from greater demand for big-screen phones to tablet owners hanging on to models longer and a lack of compelling new features.

"The market has spoken as consumers and enterprises seek more productive form factors and operating systems," Jitesh Ubrani, senior research analyst with IDC, said in a statement. "However, the next 12 to 18 months will be very interesting as Google launches the next version of Android with better multi-tasking support and as they begin to bring together their two operating systems."

Tablets running Google's Android operating system continued to dominate the dwindling market, accounting for 65 percent of shipments, followed by Apple's iOS with 26 percent, and Microsoft's Windows capturing the remaining 9 percent, IDC said.

Despite trailing in the OS market, Apple shipped the most tablets of any company -- 10 million units for the quarter -- and retained the market crown with a 25.8 percent share. Samsung grabbed the No. 2 spot with 6 million units shipped for a 15.6 percent share of the market. Lenovo came in third with 2.5 million units shipped.

Huawei and Amazon rounded out the top five tablet makers with 2.2 million and 1.6 million units shipped, respectively. But those two companies also saw the largest year-over-year growth, jumping 71 percent and 1,208 percent, respectively, while Apple's growth declined 9.2 percent and Samsung 24.5 percent.