The tablet market is still shrinking but Microsoft has found a winning recipe


While Microsoft has apparently abandoned the smartphone market, it looks like the Windows maker is enjoying a boost in tablet sales. As per the latest reports, Microsoft is currently the rising star in the tablet market, having found success where other companies failed. 

According to the latest report from market research firm Strategy Analytics, tablet makers have shipped 46.6 million slabs during Q3 2016. That's a 1% reduction compared to the previous quarter and a 10% decline compared to the same period last year. All signs show that total sales will continue to falter in the upcoming quarters, but not all of the players are losing the game.

Although sales are declining overall, Microsoft has still found a way to enjoy growth. For Q3 2016, Microsoft is credited with a 16% slice of the global tablet market. A year ago, Microsoft commanded a share of 12.8% of the market.

Google's Android is still reigning the tablet hill at the moment, with a share of 65% of the total market, but growing sales of Windows tablets are chipping away at Android's lead. According to the researchers, this trend is likely to continue in the future quarters as customers are increasingly looking at tablets as productivity machines and not as entertainment devices.

The Surface Pro and Surface Book are not only devices that sell in good numbers, but they're also reference devices for other tablet manufacturers. In the past quarters, we've seen a number of PC OEMs offering Surface competitors while simultaneously abandoning their Android tablet series. The report also notes that the average tablet selling price rose 7% as customers and manufacturers start gravitating towards 2-in-1s, which are usually priced at more than a run-of-the-mill Android slab.

Here's a quote from Peter King, Service Director of Tablet & Touchscreen Strategies for Strategy Analytics:


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8 Comments

1. MrElectrifyer

Posts: 3960; Member since: Oct 21, 2014

Kudos Microsoft, very well deserved for such great bang for buck devices. Here's hoping the Pro 5 packs a thunderbolt 3 port, that's the next big practical step for the Pro line; Tablet/Laptop on the go, high-end Desktop when docked at your desk. Without that, won't have a much compelling reason to upgrade.

2. Klinton

Posts: 1409; Member since: Oct 24, 2016

BTW not only Surface but many other brands Windows 10 tablet/hybrids are on the rise. Some of them even better than Surface.

3. meanestgenius

Posts: 22240; Member since: May 28, 2014

Great news. Microsoft certainly has a winning product with its Surface line. I'm looking forward to seeing how the Surface line advances and develops further, and I'm definitely interested in seeing what competition other Windows tablet/2-in-one OEM's bring to the tablet market.

4. avalon2105

Posts: 352; Member since: Jul 12, 2014

Surface line and Windows 2-in-1s are way more useful compared to Android and iPad competition so it only makes sense for users to switch. iPad and Android tablets are still ARM based and nothing but up-scaled phones. Surface (and other similar W10 tablets) bring easy portability while having enough HP to run Win32 programs to replace conventional desktops/laptops.

5. Crispin_Gatieza

Posts: 3150; Member since: Jan 23, 2014

I never thought laptops would replace desktops for power-hungry programs, but I can definitely see tablets/hybrids relegating laptops to also-ran status. Android and iPads simply aren't up to the task when it comes to the tablet wars that Microsoft is clearly starting to dominate. By this time next year don't be surprised if Windows tablets are the market leaders. I'd like to see the Windows market share including other OEMs not just the Surface line.

6. TechieXP1969

Posts: 14967; Member since: Sep 25, 2013

People are finding out the Surface is the best hybrid you can buy. In my experience with our SP4 i5/128, I find it makes a very good mid-ranged laptop. I rarely use it as a tablet. But when I do, I find it to be no different than using an ARM based tablet as far as functionality. The best benefit is, I can use mobile/tablet versions of apps when I want or need to and if I need more info, I fire up the browser and just login. Because of it, I rarely use my iPad Pro or my Tab S. So now they are up for sale on eBay. It can't or won't replace my 17" Envy. But for its size an cost, I couldn't be happier with it.

7. HugoBarraCyanogenmod

Posts: 1412; Member since: Jul 06, 2014

Outside smartphone, Android is nothing. Microsoft is so much productive when it comes to tablet

8. TechieXP1969

Posts: 14967; Member since: Sep 25, 2013

Guess Tim Cook was wrong. The SP4 is a great laptop and tablet. We love ours.

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