As numerous industry analysts have long predicted, tablets continue to expand in popularity even as PC sales hit an all-time slump. ABI Research is the latest firm to lend its voice to the chorus singing of tablet growth, forecasting a 28 percent bump in tablet sales for 2013. Consequently, worldwide tablet revenues are expected to increase to a healthy $64 billion.
"The convenience and mobility benefits afforded by tablet computers are showing no signs of slowing interest after record unit shipments and revenues were reported by device vendors in 2012," ABI Research noted.
In addition to a revenue and sales boon for 2013, shipments are expected to increase by 38 percent to 250 million.
According to ABI, about 60 percent of last year's tablet shipments were iDevices while 37 percent housed some form of Android. Only three percent were some flavor of Windows or BlackBerry OS.
Meanwhile, Android-based tablets continue to gain on Apple's iPad line-up. Other analysts have also echoed this sentiment while some believe Android could finally overtake iOS later this year.
"The tide is definitely turning," said mobile devices senior practice director Jeff Orr in favor of Android tablets. However, he doesn't suspect that Apple will rest on its laurels while its market share continues to be chipped away.
ABI also warns that strong sales of the iPad Mini may be cannibalizing a significant portion of Apple's sales, particularly for its larger and more profitable (per unit) iPad. The firm believes 2013 will be the year in which industry analysts can determine just how significant that overlap is.
The Samsung Galaxy Note 8.0 is the latest tablet from Samsung's Note family. It runs Android 4.1.2 and packs an 8-inch display with 1,280 by 800 pixels. The Note is powered by a 1.6GHz quad-core Exynos chip and 2GB of RAM, it also includes a 5-megapixel rear camera, 1.3-megapixel front-facing shooter and a 4,600mAh battery.
The Google Nexus 7 is the first Google tablet and is manufactured in partnership with Asus. It features a 7-inch 1280 x 800 display and a Tegra 3 SoC which itself comprises a quad-core CPU and twelve-core GPU. Connectivity options include Wi-Fi and Bluetooth, also you get a front-facing camera and ships with Android 4.1 Jelly Bean operating system.
The iPad mini is a smaller version of the iPad and it’s much more than just a shrunken-down iPad. The iPad Mini packs a dual-core A5 processor, dual-band 802.11a/b/g/n Wi-Fi, a FaceTime HD camera, 5-megapixel rear iSight camera with 1080p recording and an optional LTE radio. The Mini sports a 7.9-inch display and 1,024 x 768 resolution. Battery life is estimated at 10 hours.
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.
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