Ina Fried

Recent Posts by Ina Fried

Wow, That Non-Apple Tablet Market Really Is Small

A new study shows that just 1.2 million non-Apple tablets were sold at U.S. retail stores during the first 10 months of 2011.

And things are actually worse than that. Topping the list compiled by NPD was Hewlett-Packard, which only sold that many tablets thanks to a billion dollar fire sale.

HP accounted for 17 percent of those tablets, just ahead of Samsung, which had 16 percent of the market, followed by Asus, Motorola and Acer, which each had around a 9 or 10 percent share.

Of course, that means things were even more dismal for the other companies vying for tablet share, a list that includes HTC, Toshiba, Research In Motion and Dell, to name just a few.

NPD analyst Stephen Baker sees the very small glass as half full.

“If you look at the tablet market without Apple there are a number of high-profile brands vying for that number two spot,” Baker said in a statement, adding that three quarters of those who bought a tablet were not even considering an iPad, which he said is “an indication that a large group of consumers are looking for alternatives, and an opportunity for the rest of the market to grow their business.”

And of course, things are getting more interesting thanks to Amazon and its Kindle Fire.

But Baker also notes that the market is awfully crowded and there is not much left to go around.

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Just as the atom bomb was the weapon that was supposed to render war obsolete, the Internet seems like capitalism’s ultimate feat of self-destructive genius, an economic doomsday device rendering it impossible for anyone to ever make a profit off anything again. It’s especially hopeless for those whose work is easily digitized and accessed free of charge.

— Author Tim Kreider on not getting paid for one’s work