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2020 The Year of Tablets

2020 saw over 5 million tablets getting shipped in India with Samsung, Apple and Micromax maintaining the top 3 slots amongst a whopping 72 tablet vendors, according to a report by CyberMedia Research (CMR) under its Smart Mobility Market Programme. What’s interesting to note here is that 2020 has seen the largest sale of tablets worldwide. The major cause of this flux is obviously for educational purposes. With educational institutes closed down under the Covid pandemic, students were forced to learn from home and tablets proved to be their most handy friends.

In the fourth quarter, around 48 vendors shipped tablets in India. That includes tablet manufacturers of all sizes and shapes. Samsung along with Micromax and Lenovo captured the last quarter of 2020 in the Indian tablet market. Samsung currently sells its tablets under the Galaxy Tab branding while Micromax and Lenovo both sell highly affordable tablets in India.

The report goes on to mark “phablets” as a new profitable genre in the tablet market. These are basically smartphones with really, really big screens. Almost big enough to fall in the tablet segment but mobile manufacturers pitch them as big-screen smartphones aka “phablets”. Samsung’s Note and Note II have been selling well in a country filled with people who prefer “big” over anything else. CMR takes into account a screen size of 5-inch and above and a benchmark for considering a device as a tablet.

The report doesn’t mention operating system share in the market but from the statistics it is obvious to say that Android rules here. Everyone, other than Apple, is shipping an Android device. Windows based tablets still haven’t struck a chord with consumers in India. This year we expect a lot more Windows tablets to hit the market. Maybe things will improve then.

Samsung, Micromax and Apple took the top three spots in terms of tablet shipments in 2020. Apple launched its eighth generation iPad and the new iPad Air in India. Apple replaced its entire generation iPad inventory with the latest iPad and thus leaving users with an option to either buy the previous generation iPad or the latest generation iPad. Both have been doing pretty well, as per Apple authorized resellers in the country.

2021 is another interesting year ahead with so many new tablets scheduled to arrive later this year. Samsung has its own array of tablets it has launched under its flagship S series with Stylus Pens, Apple’s next iPad and a revised iPad Mini is expected too, Sony will start selling its Xperia Z tablet in summer this year and then there are Micromax, Lenovo and other tablet vendors who keep supplying affordable tablets in the market.

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