It should come as no surprise that Apple is currently dominating the tablet computer market given how early it beat out the competition, most of which is still dragging its feet. Compared to 3.5 million tablets sold in the second quarter of 2010, sales rose 26 percent to 4.4 million tablets in the third quarter. The iPad accounted for 95.5 percent with 4.19 million units sold, according to Strategy Analytics
. Android fell from 2.9 percent to 2.3 percent, while Windows and other platforms made up the rest.
The Samsung Galaxy Tab is expected to give the iPad a run for its money, though it's only coming out this month. There are also cheap alternatives like the $100 tablet being sold at Walgreens.
Other Android options, as well as Windows and MeeGo tablets have gotten a lot of press in recent months but most are only expected to ship in early 2011. The same goes for the BlackBerry PlayBook from Research in Motion. In other words, Apple has an opportunity to extend its lead during this holiday, before the competition heats up next year.
"The tablet wars are up and running," Strategy Analytics analyst Niel Mawston said in a statement. "Apple has quickly leveraged its famous brand, an extensive retail presence and user-friendly design to develop the tablet segment into a multi-billion-dollar global business."