Apple Expected To Lead The 2011 Tablet Market

Apple should have the majority of the tablet market for at least all of 2011, JP Morgan analyst Mark Moskowitz said on Friday. Starting from an estimated 83.3 percent of the market this fall, the iPad would drop but still hold on to 61.7 percent in 2011. Most of the drop would only come in the summer, when Android 3.0 tablets would ship in earnest.

The iPad would see a steep drop off at the end of 2011, but Moskowitz estimated that Apple would still have the largest individual share for a manufacturer in 2012 at 44.3 percent. He didn’t say how much of the share would be divided by operating systems, where Android would still be the main rival. HTC, LG, Motorola, Samsung and numerous others are planning models with Android 3.0, but with the exception of Samsung, most have held off since they didn’t feel Google’s OS was ready for tablets.

Much of the continued grip would come from the tablet market inherently playing into Apple’s strengths, the analyst explained. While an app-heavy model was relatively simple to replicate, Apple had a movie and TV service ecosystem that weren’t likely to have equivalents from competitors for a while. The physical design itself and the OS “robustness” also played a role, Moskowitz wrote.

The remakes conspicuously omitted RIM‘s BlackBerry PlayBook as a significant factor from the sales and suggested that RIM wouldn’t repeat its early smartphone lead in the tablet arena. The company in its results call on Thursday hinted that it wouldn’t sell the PlayBook until March, just before a second-generation iPad is expected and possibly as the earliest Android 3.0 tablets arrive.


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