Like most hardware vendors that make Windows-based tablets, Microsoft still has not graced the world with the sales numbers for Surface slates. But that is not stopping market research firms from jumping in to help.
New data published by research firm Strategy Analytics shows that Microsoft has seized 7.5 of the tablet market this first quarter of the year — largely helped by both Windows 8 and Windows RT. Nevertheless, the report cites several factors that have pegged the numbers back:
“Very limited distribution, a shortage of top tier apps, and confusion in the market, are all holding back shipments.”
One thing that is not very clear is how the market researcher classifies a Windows tablet, considering the amount of hybrid and convertible Windows devices currently available.
Apple iPads managed to grab 48.2 percent of the market during the quarter, but this figure is several leagues behind the 63.1 percent share it enjoyed in the same period in 2012.
Android-based tablets accounted for 17.6 million units during the first three months of the year, and this helped the platform lay claim to 43.4 percent of the total market. However, this figure rises significantly to 52 percent if low-budget Android models are added to the mix.
And iOS-based slates further slip to 41 percent in this particular case.
On the whole, however, Windows-powered slates (from Microsoft and other hardware vendors) are estimated to have moved 3 million units this quarter. Total tablet shipments are said to be in the range of 40.6 million units in the first quarter of 2013.
Surface RT was the first to launch back in October 2012, and the Pro version of Microsoft’s tablet saw daylight earlier this year. Estimates put sales of Surface units in the 1.5 million range — a clean half of the overall Windows tablets figure revealed in the above study.