Framingham, Mass.—International Data Corp. revised its tablet market forecast, predicting a surge in smaller, lower-priced devices will drive more tablet shipments than previously expected. The company increased its forecast for this year to 190.9 million units, up from its previous forecast of 172.4 million. Tablet shipments worldwide are expected to total more than 350 million by the end of 2017, the company said.
“One in every two tablets shipped this quarter was below eight inches in screen size. And in terms of shipments, we expect smaller tablets to continue growing in 2013 and beyond,” said Jitesh Ubrani, research analyst for IDC's quarterly “Tablet Tracker” forecast, in a statement.
Android-based tablets' share of the market is forecast to reach a peak of 48.8% in 2013, the company said, and Apple's iOS is expected to slip from 51% of the market in 2012 to 46% in 2013. Longer term, both iOS and Android will lose some market share to Windows-based tablets, with Windows 8 predicted to grow from 1% of the market in 2012 to 7.4% in 2017. IDC expects Windows RT growth to remain below 3% during the forecast period.