July 21, 2011 | by Andrew Kameka
In Q2 2010, Apple’s iOS accounted for 94 percent of tablet shipments thanks to the iPad’s complete dominance of the market. In Q2 2011, the number of shipments fell to 61.3 percent as Android shipments increased thanks to an influx of Honeycomb tablets. In the past three months, Android tablet shipments accounted for 30 percent of the tablets shipped.
You may have noticed that I repeatedly used the word shipments because that’s an important distinction to make; these are shipments, not sales.
Strategy Analytics released a report today saying that global tablet shipments reached 15.1 million units in Q2 2011. Android accounted for 30 percent of those shipments, which has led some to incorrectly think that means about 4.5 million Android tablets have been sold. What it actually means is that about 4.5 million Android tablets were sent to Best Buy, Wal-Mart, Target, and other retailers last quarter. Whether those devices have actually sold to consumers is another matter.
Android really hasn’t had much effect on iPad sales. Yes, the overall percentage of shipments fell to 61 percent, but Apple still managed to sell 9.25 million iPad’s last quarter. Strategy claims Apple shipped 9.3 million iPads last quarter, so that means Apple is selling iPad’s as fast as they can make them (a point the company made on it’s earning’s call Tuesday).
Even Strategy Analytics notes that the iPad is still crushing the competition, despite the decline in shipment share.
“Multiple Android models distributed across multiple countries by multiple brands…are driving volumes,” said Director Neil Mawston in a press release on the report. “However, no Android vendor yet offers a blockbuster model to rival the iPad, and demand for many Android vendors’ products remains patchy.”
The number of Android tablet shipments shows that there is increased interest in Honeycomb, but it hasn’t yet caught on with a mass audience. ASUS has been the only Android tablet maker to publicly show signs of success when it had to ramp up production on its Transformer tablet to meet consumer demand. Motorola has admitted that Xoom sales have been below expectations, and it’s too early to tell how successful other Honeycomb tablets have been. Acer, Samsung, and Toshiba have all recently introduced Honeycomb tablets that may increase sales numbers next quarter.
What will it take to turn those shipments to sales? Here’s a look at the breakdown of tablets shipped to stores in Q2 2011.