Windows tablets now account for 16% of the market

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The first quarter of 2017 looks promising for Windows tablets as Strategy Analytics’ quarterly report indicates that Microsoft’s offerings now account for 16% of the market. The increase in Windows’ tablet market share is buoyed by the decline in shipments of Android tablets and iPads.

More specifically, Windows tablet shipment gained some momentum this quarter with a 19% increase. On the other hand, iPad shipment fell 19% year over year during the same period while Android tablets dropped 10% in shipments.

Overall, the tablet market suffered a slide of 9% year over year in the first quarter of 2017. The total number of Windows tablets shipped this quarter also reached 10.1 million, according to the report.

The good news pertains only to Windows tablets shipped by manufacturers other than Microsoft. Redmond’s very own 2-in-1 Surface tablets, however, managed to capture only a small portion of the market this quarter.

Eric Smith, senior analyst for tablet and touchscreen strategies service at Strategy Analytics, explained:

2-in-1 Tablets are a hot market segment but price remains a key factor in consumer behaviors around PC and Tablet replacement devices, which is evident in lower shipments of iPad Pro and Surface Pro 4 devices in the quarter. Apple cut prices on its iPad Air 2 and iPad mini 4 models but introduced no new iPad Pro models or pricing during the quarter, leading to 4% ASP decline year-on-year. Microsoft has not released a major refresh of its Surface Pro or Surface Book devices in over a year, which has given its OEM partners and other mobile-first companies a chance to catch up with high-performing, lower cost Surface clones.

Although Surface tablets cannot take much credit for the rise in the market share of Windows tablets, the overall growth of the Windows 10 tablet ecosystem means further growth for the platform.

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