In the tablet market, there was strong growth in the Middle East (100%), Greater China (74%) and Central and Eastern Europe (47%), and while more modest, there was positive growth in all other regions with the exception of North America. The US market was adversely affected by a drop in Apple iPad shipments, which fell 40%. This was offset somewhat by 20% growth in China, Apple’s second largest market. Worldwide, iPad shipments in Q1 fell 16% year on year to 16.4 million and accounted for 80% of Apple’s total PC shipments. Despite this, Apple continued to lead the global PC market. Its share fell both sequentially and year on year from 20% to 17%, due chiefly to the increasingly competitive tablet market.
"The fall in iPad shipments in Q1 was the sharpest ever," said Canalys Senior Analyst Tim Coulling. "Apple took action during the quarter to run down its iPad inventory, a smart move as tablet stock in the channel rose due to strong seasonal shipments in the previous quarter. Longer term, we do not believe Apple’s Q1 performance points to a decline in the tablet category, despite growing pressure from larger-screen smart phones. Consumers, and increasingly businesses, are continuing to adapt, with tablets acting as disruptors and finding their place as desktop and notebook replacements. Apple’s ecosystem and the recent launch of Office for iPad should ensure it is well placed to remain a leader for some time."
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