All Over For Tablets Or Just A Maturing, Evolving Market?

CNN’s David Goldman weighs in on tablet sector doom and gloom, asking rhetorically: “Is this the beginning of the end for the tablet?”

Answering that, he contends that hysteria and panic are unwarrented, with tablets still popular and sales overall growing 11 percent last quarter according to market analysts at IDC.

That said, he notes that 11 percent is indeed dramatically lower than the 60 percent growth of two years ago, especially for Apple’s iPad, which posted negative sales growth of $16 percent and nine percent over the last two quarters respectively.

What happened? Well besides 60 percent annual growth should have obviously been way beyond sustainable, Goldman observes that a “perfect storm” confluence of three major factors impacting tablet demand. 1) Smartphones are getting bigger; 2) tablets (I would say especially iPads) are proving more durable than smartphones and people aren’t obsessively upgrading to newer machines, and 3) businesses aren’t buying tablets like they do Smartphones and PCs.

However, the latter point also olds out one bright Ray of hope penetrating the gloom in bein a potentially huge growth opportunity. He notes the Apple / IBM alliance announced last month which will see the two heavyweight partners joining forces to develop business software for iOS devices and promote Apple mobile devices to the enterprise, with IDC’s research director for tablets commenting “We believe that stronger commercial demand for tablets in the second half of 2014 will help the market grow.”

Way too soon to be composing the tablet’s epitaph.

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