Regardless of iPad 5 and iPad Mini 2 release date hype, it’s looking like 2013 could be the year in which Android tablets overtake Apple’s for the first time in the history of the market. And perhaps more worrying still for the Cupertino company, it could be a case of kissing goodbye to the global market lead once and for all.
According to research firm IDC, the vast growth in numbers of smaller and more affordable Android tablet PCs on the market has led to a situation where the iPad is losing enormous ground at a rocketing rate. From the Google Nexus 7 to the Amazon Kindle Fire and dozens of pocket-sized tabs from smaller brands, Apple is well on course to see its iPad fall behind the Android tablet PC market for the first time since its introduction in 2010.
The good news however is that shipments of both iPads and iPhones are expected to continue growing over the coming years, though at nowhere near the same pace as Android devices. And rather than a simple case of consumer focus shifting, it is more one of Android’s rollout across thousands of new devices each year covering every single price range and thus appealing to almost every global market, developed or otherwise.
Tomorrow will see the introduction of the Samsung Galaxy S4 – the 2013 flagship Smartphone for the company which is 100% guaranteed to at least temporarily wipe the floor with the current iPhone in terms of demand, sales and overall prowess. What’s more, various other contenders like the HTC one and the Sony Xperia Z are all out for blood this year, meaning that for once Apple’s iPhone will face the mother of all battles in making a name for itself.
Dramatic as it may sound, some critics have even gone so far as to compare Apple with BlackBerry, suggesting that the iPhone maker has over the course of the past 12-months done a complete U-turn and ended up moving from offence to defense in response to overwhelming competition.