Global Tablet Market Faces Decline Amidst Economic Downturn and Changing Consumer Preferences

In the second quarter of 2023, the worldwide tablet market experienced a significant decline of 29.9% year over year, with a total of 28.3 million units shipped. This drop in demand can be attributed to weak consumer confidence and purchasing power, resulting in most top vendors recording double-digit declines, according to IDC. Elevated levels of channel inventory acted as headwinds for new tablet shipments, although this issue is expected to improve in the coming months.

Company2Q23 Unit ShipmentsQ2’23 Market ShareQ2′22 Unit ShipmentsQ2′22 Market ShareYear-Over-Year Growth
1. Apple10.537.0%12.631.2%-16.8%
2. Samsung5.820.6%7.117.7%-18.3%
3. Lenovo2.17.6%3.58.7%-38.8%
4. Huawei1.75.9%2.15.3%-22.9%
5. Xiaomi1.03.6%0.71.8%41.6%
Top five tablet companies, worldwide shipments, market share, and YoY growth, Q2’23 (preliminary results, combined company view for the current quarter only, shipments in millions). (Source: IDC)

Chromebook shipments also contracted in Q2’23, with a year-over-year (YoY) decline of 1.8%, totaling 5.8 million units. This decline was relatively minimal, as there were pull-in orders from 2H23 due to an anticipated increase in Chrome OS licensing costs in the latter half of the year.

CompanyQ2′23 Unit ShipmentsQ2′23 Market ShareQ2′22 Unit ShipmentsQ2′22 Market ShareYear-Over Year Growth
1. HP Inc.1.626.9%0.915.6%69.2%
2. Lenovo1.322.8%1.321.7%3.1%
3. Dell Technologies1.322.2%1.525.6%-14.9%
4. Acer Group1.118.3%1.322.7%-20.7%
5. ASUS0.23.8%0.34.9%-24.7%
Top five Chromebook companies, worldwide shipments, market share, and YoY growth, Q2’23 (preliminary results, combined company view for the current quarter only, shipments in millions). (Source: IDC)

Apple maintained its lead in the tablet market, shipping 10.5 million units, but still saw a YoY decline of 16.8%. Despite this decline, Apple’s focus on a more affluent user base may have contributed to its relatively stronger position in the market during the economic downturn.

Samsung ranked second overall, shipping 5.8 million units, but recorded an 18.3% YoY decline in demand. The company aims to boost demand in the high-end segment, including premium and large-screen products, in the second half of 2023. Lenovo moved up in rank to the third position, shipping 2.1 million units in Q2’23. Although the company experienced a significant YoY decline of 38.8%, it showed growth of 12.9% quarter over quarter (QoQ) due to increased marketing efforts in several promotional events.

Chinese vendors Huawei and Xiaomi secured the fourth and fifth positions, respectively. Huawei shipped 1.7 million units, facing a decline of 22.9% YoY, mainly due to weak consumer demand in China. Xiaomi, on the other hand, marked its debut in the top 5, shipping 1.0 million units, with a substantial YoY increase of 41.6%. Xiaomi’s success can be attributed to strategic model launches with early bird discounts and exchange offers, coupled with a well-established channel presence in the Asian market.

The economic conditions of recent years have paved the way for various tablet deployments. Consumers in emerging markets have shown a preference for economically priced products with enhanced features, leading to relatively better growth rates in these regions compared to mature markets. Several new players have entered the market, catering to this demand in emerging markets.