2011: The Year of the Tablet–Apple’s Tablet (And Analyst Notes About It)
Much as they were in 2010, tablet sales will be a high point of 2011–but even more so. According to Caris & Co. analyst Robert Cihra, tablet sales will more than triple, rising 226 percent to 54 million units. And of those, Cihra believes Apple will claim 67 percent.
Which would spike iPad sales from 14 million this year to 36 million in 2011.
“We model Apple’s iPad continuing to dominate…in 2011,” Cihra writes in his 2011 forecast. “iPad not only launched with phenomenal early uptake but effectively sent all wannabes back to the drawing board, delaying most competitive tablet launches well into CY11. Yet we now already look forward to the first iPad 2 refresh in March (i.e., establishing annual cadence for iPads in March, iPhone each June and iPods in Sept). An enormous multi-year opportunity, we continue to view iPads less about the ‘product’ but rather igniting an explosion toward ‘thin-client’ Access computing.”
Given that explosion and Cihra’s forecast of a 226 percent spike in tablet sales, how will the the PC fare in 2011? A bit worse than it did the year prior. Cihra figures global PC market unit growth will slow to about 9 percent in 2011 from 14 percent in 2010.
Guess what happened to that missing five percent?
Says Cihra, “We see cannibalization from ‘thin-client’ iPads/tablets, particularly vs. netbooks and in multi-PC homes, already growing to 1/7th the size of the overall PC market in 2011 and shaving 5 percentage points off what PC growth might otherwise have been.”