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The latest worldwide tablet market report from research firm IDC shows that the category as a whole is seeing slowed growth. Perhaps more interesting, however, is that Apple’s dominance seems to be dwindling at a pretty significant pace.
According to the report, Cupertino’s market share fell more than 15 percent during the third quarter. Consumer, commercial and educational shipments all declined as rumors of the iPad mini gained traction.
IDC research director for tablets Tom Mainelli believes a lot of consumers sat out the third quarter to see what Apple would deliver next. Now that the iPad mini and fourth generation iPad are here, he expects Apple to have a very solid fourth quarter.
At the same time, however, the iPad mini’s comparatively high entry price of $329 leaves plenty of room for budget-minded Android tablet makers to build on the success they garnered during Q3.
Jumping back to the data, Apple’s market share fell to 50.4 percent during the past three months. Apple’s loss translated into healthy gains for other manufacturers. For example, Samsung’s total market share jumped to 18.4 percent but was overshadowed by the impressive 325 percent year-over-year growth.
Amazon managed to capture 9 percent of the overall tablet market during Q3. The company didn’t offer a tablet during the same time period a year ago so there’s no data to compare it with. Asus saw growth increase by 242.9 percent since last year which was good for 8.6 percent of the Q3 share. Lenovo rounded out the top five with 1.4 percent of the quarterly catch.
The Apple iPad (3rd-gen) includes a Retina Display operating at a resolution of 2,048 x 1,536. Powering the new iPad is a dual-core A5X processor with quad-core graphics, it also gets upgraded optics in the form of a 5MP backside illuminated sensor that features a 5-element lens, IR filter and ISP built into the A5X chip. Apple claims The new iPad is good for 10 hours of battery life and nine hours when using 4G LTE.
Amazon sent a wave crashing through the mobile industry when it announced its Kindle Fire would land with a price of $199. This is likely the best value in a tablet on the market, and will make tablet computing accessible to many people that either couldn't afford an iPad or couldn't tolerate Honeycomb tablets.
Lenovo's ThinkPad Tablet is powered by an Nvidia Tegra 2 dual-core 1GHz processor, 32GB of internal storage, 1GB of DDR2 system memory, front and rear cameras, 8.02.11 b/g/n/ Wi-Fi connectivity and a 10.1-inch WXGA (1280 x 800) IPS display with Corning Gorilla Glass.
The Google Nexus 7 has the distinction of being the first device to run the Android 4.1 "Jelly Bean" operating system. It measures 198.5mm x 120mm x 10.45mm in size, weighs 340g, and features a 7-inch IPS display that is protected by scratch-resistant glass. The Nexus sports a 1280 x 800 pixel display. It runs a quad-core Tegra 3 processor and 1GB of RAM, it also comes in 2 versions: 8GB and 16GB capacities.
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