The decline in tablet sales worldwide in 2014 after a stunning sales year in 2013 has vendors developing business models designated for education, business, and gaming applications. These models are focused on boosting shipment growth of tablets in order to stabilize revenues in the face of the sharp shipment decline seen in 2014.
Today Apple, Google, Amazon, Acer, and Lenovo are all moving in the same direction developing models aimed at capturing larger shares or keeping their current share of the tablet market. Currently education-purpose tablets in the United States total around 10 million units a year. This figure has both Apple and Google cultivating the education market, which Microsoft has been doing. Vendors are also looking towards developing education tablet markets in China and other emerging markets.
Currently the business sector has Microsoft’s Surface tablets available with more Wintel 2-in-1 models now being announced. Consumers in the business market are now able to reap the benefits of more vendors stressing the development of business tablets. Most consumers expect Apple to release a 2-in1 model for the business sector in the second half of 2015.
Many of the new tablet models feature low development costs, large-size HD displays and exceptional graphic capabilities.
For example, the Apple iPad provides good value in both its hardware and its software. But other vendors are ahead on offering the 2 in 1 tablet which is where the market is heading.
Microsoft’s Service Pro 3 is their most versatile platform to date offering a sharp display and use as a tablet or a laptop and earning Microsoft the lead market position in the business tablet sector. HP’s Spectre x360 is superbly thin, has an excellent, sharp display and good performance and battery life. Unfortunately it is too heavy to use as a tablet though it is advertised as a 2 in 1 device.
Android-based tablet vendors are focusing on inexpensive, sub-US$100 models with HD displays and high graphics in order to expand their share in the education market as well as in emerging markets.
After the troubled year in 2014, the global tablet market is not returning to the levels of growth seen in the last four years. However, estimates put worldwide tablet sales at around 233 million units in 2015 which is an 8 percent increase from 2014. These same estimates see only a 1 percent increase in PC sales during the same period.