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Global tablet market ends tough 2023 with 11% decline in Q4 – China and India were key markets driving tablet adoption

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The global tablet shipments experienced a drop of 11% year-on-year in Q4 2023, totaling 37.8 million units. This resulted in a full-year 2023 figure of 135.3 million tablets shipped, a 10% decrease from 2022. China and India were key markets driving tablet adoption, helping to counter the prevailing stagnation in other parts of the world. 

Ms. Himani Mukka, Research Manager at Canalys
Ms. Himani Mukka, Research Manager at Canalys

“The latest holiday season saw a significant surge in tablet promotions and bundled offers, but this wasn’t enough to reverse the market’s fortunes,” said Ms. Himani Mukka, Research Manager at Canalys. “Aggressive promotional strategies have been implemented globally to address longstanding elevated tablet inventories. In certain markets in Asia Pacific, for example, there have been instances of old tablet models being bundled with newly launched smartphones to expedite inventory clearance. With healthier inventory levels and further scope for government and commercial deployments, tablet sell-in is expected to rebound in 2024. New models announced by TCL and Lenovo at CES 2024 and anticipated updates to Apple’s iPad portfolio early this year will help provide a boost to the tablet refresh opportunity.”  

Mr. Kieren Jessop Analyst at Canalys
Mr. Kieren Jessop Analyst at Canalys

“The innovation gap between tablets and other personal computing devices is something for key tablet vendors to pay attention to,” said Mr. Kieren Jessop Analyst at Canalys. “Plans around on-device AI integration in tablets trail behind those in PCs and smartphones. Bringing this functionality across devices will be crucial for vendors aiming to deliver a unified and seamless experience on ecosystems. Elsewhere, this year will see a greater focus on foldable tablet form factors. Although shipment volumes will likely remain restricted due to the premium pricing of these models, they will provide an opportunity for vendors to showcase user-experiences benefits for content consumption, learning and productivity.”

In Q4 2023, the tablet market was aided by the robust performance of Chinese vendors. Huawei experienced stellar shipment growth of 95%, as it surged to third place in the rankings. Apple maintained its leading position despite a 24% year-on-year decline, shipping 14.8 million iPads in the quarter. Samsung secured second spot with 6.8 million units shipped, posting an 11% annual decrease. Lenovo dropped to fourth place but posted healthy shipment growth of 15%, gaining over 2 points of market share year-on-year. Amazon rounded out the top five with a 44% annual decline and 2 million tablets shipped globally.

Covered By: NCN MAGAZINE / Canalys

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