International Data Corporation (IDC) yesterday lowered its 2014 worldwide tablet plus 2-in-1 forecast to 245.4 million units. The main cause of the slow down are customers are using the older devices longer than expected and phablets are trying to replace the low-end of the tablet market as consumers are trying to own a single device that can serve both as tablet and a phone.
“Two major issues are causing the tablet market to slow down. First, consumers are keeping their tablets, especially higher-cost models from major vendors, far longer than originally anticipated. And when they do buy a new one they are often passing their existing tablet off to another member of the family,” said Tom Mainelli, Program Vice President, Devices & Displays at IDC. “Second, the rise of phablets – smartphones with 5.5-inch and larger screens – are causing many people to second-guess tablet purchases as the larger screens on these phones are often adequate for tasks once reserved for tablets.”
IDC also predicts that products with larger screens–like Microsoft’s new 2-in-1, the 12-inch Surface Pro 3— are expected to play a greater role in the market going forward.
“The shift back toward larger screens will mark a welcome sea change for most vendors as the average selling price for these devices will remain roughly 50 percent higher than the average sub-8-inch device,” said Jitesh Ubrani, Research Analyst, Worldwide Quarterly Tablet Tracker. “Microsoft is also expected to benefit from this shift as the share for Windows-based devices is expected to double between now and 2018.”