Kindle Fire and Nook Color take 11% tablet market share in 2011, reckons IHS

Global market estimated at 65.2 million devices

Kindle Fire and Nook Color take 11% tablet market share in 2011, reckons IHS
Suggestions that budget tablets such as the Kindle Fire and the Nook Color could dent iPad sales figures have proven to be false.

According to research from iHS, despite picking up significant share themselves, those two tablets have not affected Apple tablet sales.

In fact, it's traditional Android devices which have been impacted, with Amazon and Barnes & Noble's forked Android tablets collectively accounted for 11 percent of the market.

Samsung picked up 9 percent of the market with its Tab range, while Apple accounted for the (mountain) lion's share of 62 percent.

Own worst enemy

Apple's main competitor of its tablets turned out to be its own iPhone 4S smartphone, with IHS' Rhoda Alexander highlighting the effect of the new devices launch.

"Shipments of the iPad line fell short of IHS estimates in the fourth quarter as many loyal Apple customers devoted their dollars to shiny new alternatives," said Alexander.

"However, the primary alternative wasn't the Kindle Fire - which debuted to solid sales in the fourth quarter - but Apple's own iPhone 4S smartphone.

"The rollout of the iPhone 4S in October generated intense competition for Apple purchasers' disposable income, doing more to limit iPad shipment growth than competition from the Kindle Fire and other media tablets."

Fire sale

Amazon has seen a good start to life for its Kindle Fire, meeting IHS's sales expectations, though the research firm sees the tablet as risky business.

"Kindle Fire shipments in the fourth quarter came right in line with the IHS early December forecast of 3.9 million units, representing a respectable start for the Fire," Alexander noted.

"However, the long-term viability of the product will hinge on the success of Amazon's business gamble, which depends on tablet sales driving substantial new online merchandise sales at in order to attain profitability."

IHS reckons 2011 total tablet shipments were 65.2 million.

[source: IHS]

When Matt was 7 years old he didn't write to Santa like the other little boys and girls. He wrote to Mario. When the rotund plumber replied, Matt's dedication to a life of gaming was established. Like an otaku David Carradine, he wandered the planet until becoming a writer at Pocket Gamer.