Linked by Thom Holwerda on Thu 25th Apr 2013 21:56 UTC
Talk, Rumors, X Versus Y "According to new research from Strategy Analytics, global Android tablet shipments have increased 177 percent annually to 17.6 million units. The total number of tablets shipped in Q1 of 2013 was 40.6 million. Since 17.6 million of those 40 million tablets where powered by Android then it means that Android has a 43 percent global share. The other two big operating systems (and their respective eco-systems) in the global tablet market are Apple’s iOS and Microsoft’s Windows 8 RT. Apple still leads the race with a 48 percent market share, while Microsoft has managed to go from nothing (since Windows 8 RT is its first real tablet OS) to a 7.5 percent market share by selling some 3 million Windows based tablets." If these figures are even remotely accurate, we're going to see Android dominate the tablet (in market share) too. Not good. The Windows RT figures are a shimmer of hope, though.
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A disconnect?
by Tony Swash on Thu 25th Apr 2013 22:36 UTC
Tony Swash
Member since:
2009-08-22

Assuming that those figures are correct and Android has a 43% market share of tablets why does recent analysis of tablet web usage in the US and Canada show the iPad with an 82% share?

http://www.forbes.com/sites/chuckjones/2013/04/19/apples-ipad-domin...

This is not an attempt to argue anything just a genuine expression of puzzlement at the disconnect between the two figures. The high value for iPad web usage is not an outlier but is similar to other measurements of tablet usage particularly web usage. I find it very odd because if there is one thing that one would expect a tablet to be heavily used for it's web browsing.

Any theories?

Reply Score: 0

RE: A disconnect?
by Thom_Holwerda on Thu 25th Apr 2013 22:38 in reply to "A disconnect?"
Thom_Holwerda Member since:
2005-06-29

US = Apple territory. Rest of world = not.

My initial thought.

Reply Parent Score: 7

RE[2]: A disconnect?
by smashIt on Thu 25th Apr 2013 23:00 in reply to "RE: A disconnect?"
smashIt Member since:
2005-07-06

US = Apple territory. Rest of world = not.


another reason is that iSomething users tend to use thei toys more for surfing than others

there was a study here in austria (don't quote me on the numbers)
but for apple it boiled down to something like 10% marketshare, 90% of mobile trafic

Reply Parent Score: 5

RE[2]: A disconnect?
by Tony Swash on Fri 26th Apr 2013 10:03 in reply to "RE: A disconnect?"
Tony Swash Member since:
2009-08-22

US = Apple territory. Rest of world = not.

My initial thought.


That could possibly be the case but the North American results I quoted, as I said, are not outliers in terms of measurements of actual tablet and mobile OS usage using various metrics including in studies that spread beyond the US.

For example this study from November 2012 by Onswipe says that the iPad is responsible for 98 percent of all tablet-based traffic to its publisher partners. All other tablets drive less than 2 percent of web traffic combined.

http://marketingland.com/study-ipad-controls-98-percent-of-tablet-w...

These sorts of disparities in tablet use are very similar to many studies using different metrics showing an odd and very striking disparity between iOS and Android platform usage. It's even odder when measured by table web usage because, as I said, surfing the web would seem to be a core tablet functionality.

The conclusions I draw is that either:

- the claims about actual Android tablet sales are inaccurate (which is possible given the reluctance of Android OE to release actual sales /shipment data)

or

- people are buying lots of Android tablets and not using them for anything much

Reply Parent Score: -1

RE: A disconnect?
by tylerdurden on Thu 25th Apr 2013 22:51 in reply to "A disconnect?"
tylerdurden Member since:
2009-03-17

Apple has a commanding lead only in very few markets in the world.

There are about 190 other countries holding about 95% of the rest of the population. Apple actually caters to very little of that massive global market, since they are interested in large margins not large user bases.

Edited 2013-04-25 22:54 UTC

Reply Parent Score: 7

RE: A disconnect?
by Seph on Thu 25th Apr 2013 23:57 in reply to "A disconnect?"
Seph Member since:
2007-10-26

You are correct. This numbers does not mean that android has a ~44% market share. All that number tells you is for the quarter android tablets accounted for ~44% of the tablets shipment. What about all of the other quarters? Market share is a sum of the entire market not a sum of a quarters worth of shipment.

Edited 2013-04-25 23:59 UTC

Reply Parent Score: 4

RE: A disconnect?
by WorknMan on Fri 26th Apr 2013 01:26 in reply to "A disconnect?"
WorknMan Member since:
2005-11-13

I find it very odd because if there is one thing that one would expect a tablet to be heavily used for it's web browsing.


While I can only speak for myself, I rarely ever use my Nexus 7 for web browsing. If anything, I'll browse RSS feeds and save articles to Pocket, and then read them from there. Every once in awhile I'll hit a web site, but not often.

Reply Parent Score: 2

RE: A disconnect?
by Soulbender on Fri 26th Apr 2013 01:50 in reply to "A disconnect?"
Soulbender Member since:
2005-08-18

why does recent analysis of tablet web usage in the US and Canada show the iPad with an 82% share?


Because the world is a lot larger than North America and North America is traditionally an Apple stronghold.

Reply Parent Score: 6

RE: A disconnect?
by wocowboy on Fri 26th Apr 2013 10:04 in reply to "A disconnect?"
wocowboy Member since:
2006-06-01

It's the same "disconnect" we see with the browser statistics for the iPhone as opposed to the rest of the world, Android, etc. Statistics show that 80% of browser use on smartphones comes from iOS, meaning Safari or other iOS-capable browsers, and not from Android. I find this odd as well, but I guess it just means that iOS users actually USE the browsers on their devices while Android uses do not. That says a lot about how people use their devices. Maybe Android users are a tad less savvy, knowledgeable, or dare I say it, sophisticated in how they use their devices? It sure does look that way.

The same thing will probably happen with Android tablets, but we will have to wait and see what happens. There are dozens of what I consider to be barely-useful and even crappy Android tablets for sale, just like there are dozens of crappy Android phones that I as an iPhone user would not have if you gave them to me, but people will buy them because they are cheap and then never utilize all the features. End result is, a LOT of people buy Android devices, but few people actually USE them. That's a simplistic way of stating it, but the statistics are bearing it out.

Edited 2013-04-26 10:10 UTC

Reply Parent Score: 2

RE[2]: A disconnect?
by ricegf on Fri 26th Apr 2013 15:00 in reply to "RE: A disconnect?"
ricegf Member since:
2007-04-25

Only if "USE" means "browse the web".

The people I know with Android tablets (Nexus, Kindle) use them constantly, but are generally using apps and reading books.

I use my iPad primarily for web browsing, though I have been known to play a game of Words With Friends or Tank Battle on occasion.

It's just how the devices are used that are likely driving the web use statistics IMHO, along with the larger number of legacy iOS devices than Android.

Reply Parent Score: 3

RE: A disconnect?
by Deviate_X on Fri 26th Apr 2013 10:29 in reply to "A disconnect?"
Deviate_X Member since:
2005-07-11

Assuming that those figures are correct and Android has a 43% market share of tablets why does recent analysis of tablet web usage in the US and Canada show the iPad with an 82% share?


Android has usability issues vs iOS. People are less inclined to actually use it ........

Reply Parent Score: 2

RE[2]: A disconnect?
by Tony Swash on Fri 26th Apr 2013 12:30 in reply to "RE: A disconnect?"
Tony Swash Member since:
2009-08-22

Reading the interesting comments here (other than the daft and juvenile one about iToys - jeez grow up already) my observations are this:

- Probably the reports about Android tablet shipments are an overstated count of Android tablets sold (remember when the the evidence from the Samsung Apple trial showed by how much Samsung Tab sales had been over estimated), but nevertheless Android tablet sales are increasing as a proportion of the tablet market. I certainly don't see that many non-iPad tablets in daily use in the UK where the Tube is a good place for device watching, but it's quite possible that if I were travelling on the Shanghai metro the situation would be very different.

- The relationship between sales channels and mobile device sales performance is absolutely fundamental and one of the key differences between the PC and the consumer device markets. For example the indifference of sales channels to Windows 8 devices has been a big factor in it's poor performance.

- The difference in usage of iOS and Android seems baked in and it's existence is supported by so many methodologies of counting for so many different activities in so many geographical zones that it is undoubtably real and of a significant scale.

- This difference in platform usage between iOS and Android is of huge significance in understanding platform performance in the mobile area (not least because it makes market share a very poor proxy for platform performance) but it is still a poorly understood phenomena.

I suspect that the explanation of the differential in platform performance between iOS and Android is bound up with with two thing (there are probably other factors at work I cannot think of).

First iOS was always designed primarily as a computer operating system platform first and a mobile phone OS secondarily, whilst Android was designed as a mobile phone OS first and as a platform for Google web services secondarily and only really evolved into a computer operating system later. This subtle but important difference of genesis has all sorts of subtle but important repercussions for the way the two platforms function in the world.

The other explanation for the the differential in platform performance is that lots of people buy Android phones because they want a new phone and the point of sales people point them at Android smart phones even when the customer doesn't actually want a computing platform in their pocket and have no intention of using their phones as computing platform. If that is indeed true I am not sure how that relates to tablet purchasers.

Reply Parent Score: 0

RE[2]: A disconnect?
by lemur2 on Fri 26th Apr 2013 12:52 in reply to "RE: A disconnect?"
lemur2 Member since:
2007-02-17

Android has usability issues vs iOS. People are less inclined to actually use it ........


In my country, for a number of years now the only tablet one used to be able to buy was an iPad. Only recently have Android tablets become available, and even more recently they have been available at a far more attractive price. There are some decent specification Android tablets beginning to become available in stores at between 75% and 50% the price of an equivalent iPad.

Even if there were "usability issues", which I don't believe for a second, that isn't going to stop the majority of tablets being sold switching to Android tablets given a price discount of between 25% and 50%.

Indeed, this is what I begin to see reflected on the shelves of consumer electronics stores ... recently there is about twice the choice of Android tablets and twice the display area compared to iPads.

Reply Parent Score: 1

RE: A disconnect?
by lemur2 on Fri 26th Apr 2013 12:25 in reply to "A disconnect?"
lemur2 Member since:
2007-02-17

Assuming that those figures are correct and Android has a 43% market share of tablets why does recent analysis of tablet web usage in the US and Canada show the iPad with an 82% share?

http://www.forbes.com/sites/chuckjones/2013/04/19/apples-ipad-domin...

This is not an attempt to argue anything just a genuine expression of puzzlement at the disconnect between the two figures. The high value for iPad web usage is not an outlier but is similar to other measurements of tablet usage particularly web usage. I find it very odd because if there is one thing that one would expect a tablet to be heavily used for it's web browsing.

Any theories?


Web usage would be proportional to "installed base".

Market share is an attempt to measure the numbers of the units being sold right now.

The two figures are related only in the sense that the first figure is the all-time integral of the second.

Apples iOS and iPads have been very dominant in the tablet market for a long time.

In consumer stores in my country for a few years now the only tablets one used to be able to buy were iPads. Only recently have Android tablets been offered as an alternative.

Even if Android tablets were outselling iPads now (which they are not as yet) then it would still take a number years worth of sales to even out the web usage statistics.

Edited 2013-04-26 12:32 UTC

Reply Parent Score: 3

RE[2]: A disconnect?
by Tony Swash on Fri 26th Apr 2013 12:32 in reply to "RE: A disconnect?"
Tony Swash Member since:
2009-08-22

Web usage would be proportional to "installed base".

Market share is an attempt to measure the numbers of the units being sold right now.

The two figures are related only in the sense that the first figure is the all-time integral of the second.

Apples iOS and iPads have been very dominant in the tablet market for a long time. Even if Android tablets were outselling iPads now (which they are not as yet) then it would still take a number years worth of sales to even out the web usage statistics.


True - but that has ceased to apply to the phone market and the differential in platform performance is just as marked there - see my longer comment below.

Reply Parent Score: 2

RE[2]: A disconnect?
by ricegf on Fri 26th Apr 2013 15:13 in reply to "RE: A disconnect?"
ricegf Member since:
2007-04-25

Web usage would be proportional to "installed base".


That's only true if "All devices are used equally to access the web" is also true. Other uses for tablets such as media creation and consumption, gaming, shopping, etc. exist which I personally believe makes the latter unlikely, and thus I don't buy the former.

A good counterpoint is that, when Symbian was demonstrably holding over 60% of the world installed base and iPhone was the hot new contender, website traffic analysis showed iOS to generate over 80% of the mobile web traffic to major sites (sorry not to have a link, it's been a while).

The Symbian browser was awful (I'm told), and the Android browser is not as good as Safari (I'm also told - I use an iPad), so the situation seems somewhat analogous.

Reply Parent Score: 2

RE[2]: A disconnect?
by daboochmeister on Fri 26th Apr 2013 20:18 in reply to "RE: A disconnect?"
daboochmeister Member since:
2012-01-03

Even if Android tablets were outselling iPads now (which they are not as yet) then it would still take a number years worth of sales to even out the web usage statistics.


Actually, in point of fact, when you add in the "grey market" or white-box Android tablet sales, e.g. from the Chinese manufacturers, even conservative estimates (of 5 - 6 million such units) show Android shipping easily more units than iPads.

Two factors I'm surprised no one has mentioned -

1) The counts are for units shipped, not sold ... so you'd expect somewhat of a partially-delayed effect on usage statistics

2) The web usage metrics each have a specific methodology which has to be evaluated to see if it skews data in favor of one or the other product. E.g., NetMarketShare gathers data predominantly from "pay-per-click" sites (78% of the sites submitting data); is it not feasible that iPad users might more frequently end up at such sites, because of either cultural differences or ecosystem differences, where Android users less so?

Reply Parent Score: 2

RE: A disconnect?
by fretinator on Fri 26th Apr 2013 14:04 in reply to "A disconnect?"
fretinator Member since:
2005-07-06

I have a theory - Math (or Maths if you prefer). The number of people browsing includes ALL people who have a tablet - which includes all the people who bought iPads since it came out. Hence you would expect the percentage of tablet users using iPads to still be high. However, if the trend of 43% Android sales for the previous quarter continues, then I would expect the percentage of tablet users using iPads should drop even though the iPad is still just barely outselling Android - it is not selling at a percentage of 82%. In addition, the acceleration of Android use would lead one to expect the percentage of Android use (velocity) to increase. However, I do think the use of mathematics is highly discouraged in the U.S:

http://tv.msnbc.com/2013/04/24/debunked-the-harvard-study-that-repu...

Reply Parent Score: 5

RE: A disconnect?
by Morty on Fri 26th Apr 2013 15:44 in reply to "A disconnect?"
Morty Member since:
2005-07-06

recent analysis of tablet web usage in the US and Canada show the iPad with an 82% share?

Any theories?


Flawed anaysis, as it's not an easy thing to do. There are several simple factors that easily can give 10-20% error.

Does the site statistics from the sites in the analyze correcty identify all the avalible browsers on Android tablets as such? Or does some end up in an "others" category and get omited from the analysis?

What kind of sites are included in the data used to preform the analyze? If they include mainstream media sites(likely), does those sites also have apps for accessing their content? Are there factors making Android users prefer those apps(quality vs web version. price vs iPad version etc).

Do the sites included have "mobile" and "desktop" versions(common among those media sites). Would Android users prefer to identify as desktop user on those sites to avoid a less functional "mobile" version?

Reply Parent Score: 2