Last week, Strategy Analytics released its stats for smartphone sales for 2014. The research and analysis firm revealed that global smartphone shipments had grown by 30% for the year, and shipments from Q14 alone jumped from 290.2 million to 380.1 million units. Emerging markets including China and Indonesia are expected to continue to drive growth into 2015, but the same cannot be said for tablets.
Just four days on from the release of its report on smartphone shipments, Strategy Analytics has released a similar report for tablets. This report shows a slow down in tablet shipments that SA calls ‘dramatic’ and says preliminary data puts tablet shipments at 78.3 million units in Q4, up just 1% compared to the same period a year ago. Strategy Analytics is predicting just 6.6% in growth for the whole year.
SA blames pressure from the iPhone 6 for decline in iPad shipments, which fell from 26 million units to 21.4 million units in Q4. Indeed, Apple’s larger screened phones likely did have an impact on tablet purchases for Apple. However, the fact that 2013 saw the launch of the iPad Air is likely also a contributing factor. This year’s iPad Air 2 wasn’t as significant an upgrade, nor was the iPad Mini 3.
Microsoft did very well, though. SA puts its market share at 7%, up from 4% in the same period of 2013. The company launched the Surface Pro 3 last Spring (it was introduced about six months after the Surface Pro 2), and this year the company is expected to focus on tablets even more as it works on a more seamless experience across all platforms with Windows 10.