TELECOM & INTERNET | Staff Reporter, Singapore

A worm in this Apple as Android takes 46% of the tablet market in Asia?

Over 260,000 Tablets worth USD167m were sold in Southeast Asia in April, says GfK Asia.

The launch of the tablet last year has taken the world by storm causing much excitement in the computing industry among both consumers and manufacturers alike. Shortly after the first of its kind—the IPad officially entered the market, consumers were snapping them up while manufacturers were coming up with new models with increasing number of new and advanced features.

According to global leading market research company GfK Asia, some 261,000 tablets spanning almost ten brands were sold across seven Southeast Asian markets from January to April this year.

Tablets operating on the Android operating system (OS) has been rising in prevalence and is
today the most popular platform embraced by users. In April, almost half of all tablets (46%)
purchased by consumers was an Android compared to five months before, in November, where
the proportion was only slightly just over one out of ten (13%).

“GfK’s retail audit across the seven Southeast Asian markets showed that similar to smartphone
trends, Android OS has also been gaining traction in the tablets arena since the last quarter of
2010,” said Mr. Gerard Tan, Regional Account Director for IT, GfK Asia.

“More manufacturers are banking on the current Android craze and choosing this platform for their tablets, resulting in consumers being availed more options of Android tablets to choose from,” he added.

The combination of today’s well wired society plus consumers’ demand for high speed and
constant web-connectivity have made 3G and 4G tablets popular choices as compared to the non
3G/4G counterparts even with their costlier pricing. 3G and 4G enabled tablet sales contribute to
nearly four-fifths (79%) of overall sales units across the seven countries.

“In recent months, we have also noticed the addition of more features on new tablet models such
as double camera which is fast becoming the default feature, as well as USB drives,” observed
Mr. Tan. “However, despite all these enhancements, average prices are on a declining trend,
making tablets increasingly affordable to consumers.”

GfK Asia’s retail tracking showed that average prices of tablets have been sliding gradually
across Southeast Asia with the average price standing at around USD600 in April, down by 23
percent when compared to January’s average pricing across the region. The most expensive
tablets were found in Indonesia, whereas those being sold in the Philippines reflected the lowest
average selling price in April.



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