IPad Tops Tablet Sales. Kindle Fire Makes Strong Debut

Lest we forget, Apple still has some competition. Though IDC confirmed big shipment numbers for Apple, the market researcher said Amazon made a good showing too. Global tablet shipments into “sales channels” rose by 56% on a sequential basis in the fourth calendar quarter of 2011 to 28.2 million units, according to IDC. That represents a whopping 155% increase from the fourth quarter of 2010. For entire 2011, tablet shipments reached 68.7 million and in the current calendar, shipments will be 106.1 million, up from 87.7 million in the previous forecast. Apple shipped 15.4 million iPads in Q4, garnering 55% of the global market and Amazon sold 4.7 million Kindle Fire tablets in Q4, grabbing 16.8%. Third-place Samsung grew its share to 5.8% in Q4 while Barnes & Noble saw its Nook tablet share slip to 3.5%.
                                                                    The Kindle Fire -- which runs a custom version of Google’s Android operating system -- grew its share of the Android market to 44.6% in the fourth quarter from 32.3% in the third quarter. As a result, Apple’s iOS slipped from 61.6% market share to 54.7% of the total tablet market.
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