And it's this lot who might raise an interested eyebrow in hearing news that tablet shipments in Q1 actually fell nearly 30% – well, until you reason things through, that is.
Part of the problem for the tablet scene, of course, is that it remains so spectacularly dominated by the iPad. So when the iPad has a sales dip, the whole market suffers. And guess what happened in Q1...
According to IDC, a total of 7.2 million tablets were sold from January to March, versus 10.1 million shifted in Q4 of last year. The majority of those were iPads of course, though the Android opposition now holds a respectable 34% worldwide market share... well, semi-respectable considering how many there are now ganging up on Apple's wonder-slab.
Add to that the fact that Q1 is always the slowest quarter and Q4 always the highest, plus the fact that most prospective iPad buyers were waiting for the iPad 2, and not only do Apple's sales actually start to look quite good, but so by extension do the whole tablet market's too.
Says IDC analyst Jennifer Song: “Although media tablet sales were not as high as expected in the first quarter of 2011 due to slower consumer demand, overall economic conditions and supply-chain constraints, we believe with the entrance of competitive new devices in the second half of 2011, the market will sell close to 53 million units for the year and continue to grow long-term.” Yes, that was all one sentence.
So bad news after all for the tablet haters – the slate bandwagon rolls on.