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back to article PEAK APPLE: iPad market share hits the skids

The seemingly impenetrable wall of iPads that Apple CEO Steve Jobs erected around the slablet market is being turned to a pile of fruity mush under the rule of his successor Tim Cook. At least, that is, according to global sales figures for Q2 from Strategy Analytics, which showed Apple's market share fell to 28.3 per cent - …

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Does this mean Apple are scrambling to "invent" the next big thing (that nobody needs but suddenly everyone wants) to sell to the gullible masses?

My money's on an iPet, just because the Sony Aibo and the Ugobe Pleo weren't instant overnight successes it doesn't mean that robot pets can't be sold to everyone and their granny with the right company & marketing scheme!

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Happy

iOS8 will fix all this

Screenshots already leaked.

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Anonymous Coward

Should have put a retina screen in the mini.

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Alert

They will take the solution in the past.

Put it in a more expensive box, raise the price make their garden more walled, go up market and be a higher profit margin Niche player.

I'd be surprised if they go the other way and bring out $99 Tablets.

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Pint

Nothing lasts forever, products are either surpassed or market saturation happens. You look at the history mega-corps like Oracle, Ellison demanded huge 300% year on year growth in sales at the start and for 5 years he got it but markets can only take so much until they're saturated. The other factor is that without massive change in a product people will reach a point where it's only the die-hards will upgrade for the sake of it, most of us have a gadget or device and we make it last as long as possible, be it a car, a PC, fridge, washing machine, tablet, etc.

To put it bluntly, now we're about 3-4 years down the tablet road for the time being at least, anyone who wants a tablet probably has one and they'll most likely not upgrade a while yet.

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Pint

I hates titles!

Instead of gloating adolescent schadenfreude (gotta look cool, man!), here we have a logical, rational, sensible and very well expressed comment.

What the hell are you doing at El Reg? Anyway - have a beer (& an up vote).

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Mushroom

Re: I hates titles!

> Instead of gloating adolescent schadenfreude (gotta look cool, man!), here we have a logical, rational, sensible and very well expressed comment.

Payback's a bitch. We've had to put up with all of the Apple uber alles nonsense.

Some immature schadenfreude is simply our due.

Call it "revenge of the geeks".

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Tweaking

People are bored with tablets. World and Dog has one of some sort now and things like "retina displays" aren't enough of a draw to make people shell out £400-500 so they can be the envy of their friends. Tablets need to have something new and revolutionary (projected keyboards, finger gesture recognition...who knows?) in order to be *exciting* again. Samsung and Apple are both stuck in a holding pattern at the moment.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Tweaking

Perhaps Samsung are stuck waiting to see what Apple do next?

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Tweaking

Trolling attempt fail. The article is about how Apple is having a hard time selling tablets, while Samsung is holding their own.

You're going to have to try harder in the future. Score 1.5 out of 10

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Re: Tweaking

I would imagine Samsung's impact on Apple is very limited compared to that of Asus/Google and Amazon.

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No suprises here. Move along please...

When a new and revolutionary product comes out (and I hate to admit it but the iPad was revolutionary, not because it was the first to market but because it actually created the product people wanted from the market), it is normally of relatively low hardware spec. People jump onboard the product and sales are huge. And progressively over the next few years, the hardware specs jump significantly, meaning those early adopters buy newer and newer machines so as to be able to use the latest and greatest software for said machines. But eventually, you get to a point, where the increase in hardware specs slows significantly, and the software requirements also stop needing such high requirements, and then the need for jumping on board the latest and greatest device stops being driven by the software. At this point sales will of course plummet, as people return to a sane upgrade cycle level. Its happened with PCs over the last few years, it will happen to tablets now.

That's just economics, nothing suprising is happening... Now we wait for the next company to launch the next revolutionary product and watch the whole cycle start again...

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Re: No suprises here. Move along please...

I agree to a point - I'm still very happily using the ipad I bought when they first came out - the new ones aren't magically different. It's a little slow in some things, but not so slow I want to spend £300-700 on a new one.

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Coat

Re: No suprises here. Move along please...

You people are horrible consumers.

Don't you know that the whole western world is centered around consumption?

What's going to happen if we are all just happy with what we've got and stop buying stuff? Big companies lose sales and revenue, the guys at Wall Street get unhappy, and the stock market plummets. Do you really want to be responsible for that?

Now go out and buy that shiny new iGalaxy or S4Pad or whatever you prefer, but for heavens sake buy one - better yet, buy two - and keep the wheels of the industry churning. I don't care if you don't need it or already have one. When the world runs out of raw materials and the manufacturers can no longer produce gadgets, THEN you have an excuse to stop buying.

What - are you still reading? Go buy something already ...

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Meh

Re: No suprises here. Move along please...@Iglethal

Sounds like you are talking about the PC market.

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Something must have killed the tablet, just like the tablet apparently killed the PC.

Or just perhaps, those people that wanted to buy one have now done so.

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Anonymous Coward

No. The market has matured, so sales have slowed, and will now correspond closer to natural device lifetime upgrade cycles, but tablets have displaced PC's for most purchases. There won't be a revival of PC sales any time soon.

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Did you two read the same article as I did? The third paragraph says:

"... 'pads, including white box devices, grew 43 per cent to 51.7 million standalone products."

The overall tablet market is very healthy; the story is simply that Apple's shipments are down 14% and that in a quickly inflating market that has translated to a drop in market share of almost 20 points. So there's a bit of a changing of the guard going on, with various flavours of Android (ie, I'm counting Amazon's fork) in the ascendant.

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Anonymous Coward

Even the lackies will now see the density

The Mini was always a bit small on density, and now by follower standards of adoring DPI the Nexus 7 has moved further ahead, now being 4 times better than the Mini.

Apple have gone down with a dose of low consumption.

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Dont believe everything you hear...

After all there's an Apple customer born every minute

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Anonymous Coward

Totally predictable

As often expressed - saturation of the market, which also gives rise to that special thing Apple try to cling to - "coolness". Like music, a general rule is : "If your parents (and grandparents) like it, it ain't cool!"

Wall to wall iPhones being used by grannies and grandads doesn't make the "kids" want them.

Android at least has variety in the eco-system - the opportunity to be more individualistic than a "me too! I got one, so I must be cool too".

I also fear that Apple, under the yoke of money-men and share-holders will sell their soul and head DOWN-MARKET. Jobs will be spinning, but wait for cheap iPhones and cheap iPads. There's nowhere else to go.

If EVERYONE can have a Porsche, it might as well be a Fiesta.

It's like when microwaves became widely available....when everyone has one and gets over the fact they cook things quickly......what more can you do?

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Re: Totally predictable

You do of course realize that is the Grannies and Grandads that have all the money now. Everytime I visit my parents it seems like one of their similarly aged neighbors is driving a new car. Also, I am more than happy for Apple to help configure my monther in law's iPad and leave me alone.

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Pint

Hmmm...

Part of the problem is that last year, Apple did their typical spring iPad upgrade cycle with "The New iPad", only to release another iPad in the fall with the "Lightening port, as well as the iPad mini. Those who bought "The new iPad" must've felt slighted by this Apple sales tactic. There was no need for them to run out and buy the "iPad 4", when the only real difference was a lightening port. Apple may have thought that the iPad mini would make up the difference, and while they sold more iPad mini's than iPad 4's, the lower price meant lower profits, and they didn't sell enough iPads to really impress. So while Cook and co. may be "comfortable with where they are at", they may soon find themselves selling even fewer iPads than this. Let's see how comfy they are next quarter and after the year end holidays.

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Happy

Re: Hmmm...

I'd say the more important upgrade with the iPad 4 over the 3 was the increase in processor speed / gpu, which gave a noticeable increase in processor intensive applications.

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Facepalm

Re: Hmmm...

"Re: Hmmm...

I'd say the more important upgrade with the iPad 4 over the 3 was the increase in processor speed / gpu, which gave a noticeable increase in processor intensive applications."

Which they used to implement pre-emotive multitasking, just like other computers have done for the last 30-40 years.

Oh, wait a minute...

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Happy

Re: Hmmm...

Ahh - pre-emotive. That means it switches before I begin to curse the f******g application that is not doing what I want done right now. Where can I get it?

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Re: Hmmm...

IPad4, while faster than the iPad3, can't mirror it's retina display at full resolution. That lightning port is *still* not able to handle the bandwidth (although Apple knows about the problem and is working on the problem). If you want a retina display on an IPad and the ability to watch the same resolution on your TV then the discontinued iPad3 is the only device that can do this.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Hmmm...

Pre-emotive multitasking is what women are able to do before the PMT hits, when all of a sudden they can only do one angry thing at a time. Which is the ground state of many British male managers.

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Happy

Re: Hmmm...

That typo was worth a few upvotes. Gave responders one though.

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Margins

Apple makes plenty of money on their iPad line. A new model here, a revision there and there will be plenty of people ready and willing to buy a new one.

I am more interested in non Apple tablets. With Google and Amazon selling at cost is there a market for anyone else to compete. I am not sure if Samsung Notes are classed as tablets now, but who would be willing to compete in this market for such paltry leftovers. I have no sympathy for Microsoft or its CEO, but I don't envy the job of selling in a market where two of the competitors are giving their products away in the hope of driving ad sales or digital content sales.

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It's possible that the reason for the decline in sales is that older iPads are still good. My iPad2 and my girlfriend's 1st gen iPad are both perfectly usable.

Conversely Android devices seem to have planned obsolescence built in, I'm on my 3rd Android phone each of which has died or become slowly more unusable with each software update.

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Anonymous Coward

Strangely, my Nexus 7 is working fine. I have no intention of replacing it with the new version when it comes out.

Also, one of the main features of the last couple of Android releases has been an improvement in speed, not a slowing down.

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Anonymous Coward

Strangely, your current gen tablet is working fine. Shocker.

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Per GeekBench numbers the iPads really divide into three groups:

The iPad 1, with a score of 454.

The iPad 2, iPad 3 and iPad Mini with scores of 781, 791 and 745 respectively.

The iPad 4 with a score of 1756.

So if you bought an iPad 2 then you've got a device a shade faster than one of the current generation models. Naturally app makers are therefore still going to optimise for that level of performance.

Conversely if you went out and bought a Motorola Xoom or one of the other early Android tablets then not only did your specific device fail to capture enough of the market to be interesting in itself but also the devices that have powered the subsequent explosion in Android share are noticeably faster (yes, even the Kindle Fire). So app makers are unlikely to spend much time optimising for that level of performance.

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Meh

Just like Samsung, they cheat on benchmarks, don't believe everything you read. They just haven't been caught yet, it took years for Armstrong to be outed as a drug cheat, but time will catch up with them.

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Strategy Analytics

That's the same firm that generated all the "Samsung more profitable phone maker than Apple stories" by comparing Samsung's gross with Apple's net profits, then hastily revised their analysis when their schoolboy errors were pointed out. A revision not picked up by news outlets like El reg.

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Anonymous Coward

Someone want to tell BBC and CNET....

As only last week they were spouting this nonsense:

"I am not convinced that ordinary consumers will respond better to this tablet than the last one, Apple has established such momentum, Google's real challenge isn't just making a better tablet than Apple, it's persuading ordinary people to care that it makes one at all."

What a bunch of out of touch tools,,,

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Anonymous Coward

Logic bomb

They introduced the iPad mini to compete against the android 7" tablets, and instead ended up competing against their own product - people are buying minis often instead of the iPads. That's all great in one way for Apple as they still get money from it, but.......

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Re: Logic bomb

Somebody once said 'If you don’t cannibalize yourself, someone else will'. I have a feeling he was CEO of Apple for a while.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Logic bomb

My own feeling is that Jobs was distorting reality as usual. People really wanted either a convenient portable unit - 7 to 8 inch diagonal - or a small laptop. The iPad sold very well because it was a reasonable compromise, and the first Android tablets followed suit (I have one). But once people could get a decent 7 inch unit, Apple were in fact forced to follow suit.

I suspect that the real reason that the original iPad had a 10 inch screen was that the technology at the time simply could not pack everything into a 7 inch case. Since then progress has been very rapid indeed and shows no sign of levelling off. It's exactly like the original iPhone which "did not need multitasking" - i.e. the technology available at the time couldn't make it work.

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The problem with ThermoNuclear War

The resulting cloud of toxic radioactive shit is just as likely to waft back into your back yard.

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>Perhaps Samsung are stuck waiting to see what Apple do next?

Interesting. I've only noticed Apple's luke warm attempts in the last 2-3 years to 'innovate' what others were already selling, albeit with unexpected 'retinesque' labels.

Except for announcement events, of course - an arena in which the self-selecting audience could orgasm at the sight of a tin of broad beans without realising that their behaviour is untypical of humans.

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Dear Mr. Cook, have you any idea what we'd be willing to pay for a Stepford wife?

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Stronger walls

I originally viewed the "walled garden" as a limitation that would eventually be solved. I awaited improved iModels but Apple had other plans. The "walled garden" is extending further and further into the desktop computers with each MacOS release. Portable files and freely available applications are deprecated in the current OS. The next OS appears to push this even harder; further restricting what applications can do if they don't run in Apple's private "sandbox". Apple is taking such drastic measures to lock-in customers that, for the first time 20+ years, I can't see my self buying anything more from them.

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Meh

Re: Stronger walls

'The "walled garden" is extending further and further into the desktop computers with each MacOS release. Portable files and freely available applications are deprecated in the current OS. The next OS appears to push this even harder; further restricting what applications can do if they don't run in Apple's private "sandbox". Apple is taking such drastic measures to lock-in customers that, for the first time 20+ years, I can't see my self buying anything more from them.'

Strangely reminiscent of 20-ish years ago when Apple nearly went down the tubes by walling themselves into a diminishing garden that a diminishing number of people would pay to be inside. And, on a lesser scale, of Microsoft's attempt to unstandardise the web with IE-specific lock-in.

High walls and proprietary lock-in tend to p*** off developers and customers in the long run. The approach is slow, head-in-the-sand suicide.

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No regional analysis

The article presents no regional analysis except to point out that 88% of activations are in the US. My reasoning processes conclude that Apple remains strong in its home market but desperately poor elsewhere.

This lack of regional analysis is a bit of a theme. In another post I saw today, which essentially bemoaned the 'fragmentation' of Android, there were many statistics but none about the use of devices by region.

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